The 2018 PDMA Annual Conference was held at the Swissotel in Chicago this past week.  Our firm, Design Integrity, has supported the Chicago chapter of the Product Development and Management Association (PDMA) in recent years, but this was the first annual conference that a representative of our firm attended (not just the cocktail party!).

The conference was thoroughly professional, the content was expansive and applicable to our industry, and we met and shared perspectives with several product development, product management, and innovation experts across various fields and industries. It was a rewarding experience that was well worth the time and investment.

The range of speakers was diverse, and each breakout session time slot offered multiple choices of topics to allow attendees to focus their time on subjects of interest. Overall, it was a positive experience that triggered a wide variety of insights, thoughts on future plans, and connections with dozens of talented individuals and subject matter experts.

Jim Craig, the goalie on the 1980 US Olympic hockey team, was the keynote speaker. His presentation was more than a motivational speech. He touched on several important values and life lessons that are universal across all fields – not just athletics. He was inspirational, and he shared his thoughts on dreams, goals and team dynamics.

The headline sessions, including Stephen Wendel’s presentation on the business of behavioral change, were interesting and thought provoking. Each breakout session attended shared new insights on applicable subjects related to those who design, develop, and manage products, software, and systems.

A big thanks and kudos to the PDMA and event organizers!  Our team is looking forward to future PDMA events and the 2019 PDMA Annual Conference in Orlando.