BILT NA from an Aussie non-Revit users perspective

BILT’s inaugural North American event was held in Toronto, Canada earlier this month, and based on the feedback I heard walking around the event, the change from RTC to BILT has also been a success in North America. The North American event is probably the most Revit specific of all  four BILT events across the globe, but there were a reasonable number of sessions that I could attend as a non Revit user.

RTC Events Week North America includes three side events – Building Content Summit (BCS), Data Day, Design Technology Summit (DTS) in the lead up to the three day BILT event. For more information on these events I recommend that you look at the website links at the top right of the BILT NA website.

BILT NA started with Chairman R. Robert Bell opening the event with an interesting innovation. A ‘RTC’ swear jar for presenters that referred to RTC, in lieu of BILT. A jar I found myself contributing to due to my RTC comment during my introduction of Jon Mirtschin. We were also fortunate to have Dave Rendall present ‘Freak Factor’ as the keynote. (RTC ANZ  and ARCHICON 2016 keynote presenter).

This year at BILT NA a new session format which used in a style of a round table and I believe this is something that could be adopted at BILT ANZ 2018. These structured and presenter led sessions include a high level of attendee participation and work really well. In my opinion, the round table presentation format provides greater opportunity for outcomes than the ANZ favoured panel discussion.

There were a few stand out sessions for me that gave me a great insight into the cultural differences and focuses of the different regions. As a typical attendee of BILT ANZ, it was refreshing to see sessions with such a strong focus on personal skills and personalities. A session delivered by Sarah Causey on in house training demonstrated the level of thinking that goes into the preparation and delivery of training to staff, focusing to the level of pedagogical thinking of different ways people learn and different technologies that can be leveraged.

Scott Brown and Darick Browak chaired a round table discussion on how personality can effect the communication differently. Going to the extreme length of suggesting all people within their practice undertake the Briggs Myer Personality Test, or similar. This intimate session with only 25 people made the session highly interactive and meant that attendees contributed to the direction of the discussion. These interactions enabled BILT attendees to walk away with information that responded more directly to their needs. If anyone is considering submitting a round table style presentation feel free to touch base with me to hear more about my experiences this year at BILT NA round table discussions.

As one of the most vocal OpenBIM advocates I must give a shout out to James Vandezande on his presentation of IFC from Revit. It is a topic that we are now familiar with in ANZ, but at the NA event, there is very little knowledge or discussion on the topic.

And finally, from a technical perspective, it was exciting to see HVE running with zero clients in the Labs. This change will hopefully make the experience in Labs, at future events, run even smoother than before.

Thanks to the BILT North American committee for having me in Toronto. It was a great experience attending my first BILT NA and I recommend to other attendees to make a trip to another event around the globe. It provides you with a different perspective on the ways that different regions work, and opens your eyes to conflicting concepts which enables you to question the way you work. For our potential BILT ANZ 2018 speakers, I would love to see some round table abstracts. It would be great to see these abstracts focus on industry wide issues, not software based ones. With abstract submissions for BILT ANZ 2018 about to open it is time to start thinking about what you want to share with industry and your peers.

I look forward to seeing you at BILT ANZ 2018.

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