Was it just me, or did the Gaylord Opryland by some means appear to be a lot more tolerable this year?
As I am composing this, I am sitting down on a aircraft, obtaining just taken off from Nashville after attending my 11th Clio Cloud Meeting. I am, it turns out, a member of smaller club of less than 10 folks who have attended each individual ClioCon given that the 1st – a somewhat modest affair of about 200 folks who collected in Chicago in 2016 for an party developed by a relatively compact legal tech upstart that was proselytizing for legal professionals to go to the cloud.
Fast ahead from that humble beginning and ClioCon has developed to around 4,500 attendees, like 3,500 in person and a further 1,000 virtual the enterprise at the rear of it, Clio, has turn out to be one particular of the greatest and most influential companies in authorized tech and Jack Newton, its founder and CEO, has grow to be considerably of an field icon, whose ClioCon keynote is normally a seminal occasion of the convention – one that filled a full two hrs this year.
Oh and, by the way, lawyers have, indeed, moved to the cloud.
(See my related posts about the meeting: Clio Goes All Out with Important Solution Announcements, Together with A Personal Injuries Include-On, E-Filing, and (Of Course) Generative AI and In Addition to Important Products Bulletins, Clio Rolls Out Slew of Item Updates.)
Around my years of attending this conference, I have been an unabashed admirer, as I reiterated just last week in a put up in which I mentioned I consider it the greatest conference in lawful tech.
We could go off on a tangent listed here about what it indicates to be the finest legal tech convention, due to the fact what I genuinely indicate is that ClioCon is greatest for its concentrate on viewers – solo and lesser agency legal professionals who are interested in studying about the newest traits in technological know-how and innovation. If, as a substitute, you are the main lawful officer at a Fortune 500 business or the taking care of lover of a 2,000-lawyer company, then this meeting is not for you.
But that would be beside the place, due to the fact, merely put, there is no other meeting in legal tech, no matter of target audience, that has the power and vibe of ClioCon.
Even so, in my critique last yr of ClioCon, I tempered my normal praise, sensation that the convention had been a bit off its A game. Because publishing that evaluation, I have listened to from quite a few attendees who agreed with me – and, frankly, even from a lot of inside of Clio who agreed with me. In truth, Newton and many others explained to me that numerous alterations had been made this calendar year specially to tackle the problems that I and other individuals elevated.
Which brings me back to the Gaylord. ClioCon rotates on two-yr cycles to diverse host metropolitan areas, and final 12 months was its initially 12 months in Nashville, at the Gaylord Opry resort. I hated the venue past yr, and I know I was not alone in that, and I blamed the location as section of the explanation the meeting felt off. I described it as “a sprawling, byzantine facility that appears to have been developed by a team impressed by the drawings of graphic artist MC Escher.”
So I was astonished to return this year and find that it felt considerably less terrible – in actuality, it felt properly tolerable. It will never ever be my favorite resort, but it wasn’t as dreadful as I remembered it.
Clio gets a whole lot of the credit for that. The enterprise went out of its way to present navigational guidance of all sorts. There was each an in-application map and a print map. Clio staffers had been strategically positioned all over the elaborate to serve as guides and signage was also superior. In addition – insider suggestion – I uncovered there is a Gaylord application that delivers stay going for walks directions in the design of Google Maps.
In my interview with Newton just before the clearly show, he talked about the tick-tock cycle of transferring the conference each and every two decades, with the to start with “tick” calendar year in a new venue sure to have some hiccups, but the 2nd “tock” 12 months the one that really should get everything quite-a lot suitable.
Very well, get it proper it did. In my feeling, this was the finest ClioCon yet, and when you have the best calendar year of what was previously the finest convention, that provides up to a superlative expertise.
Just after the 2019 convention (you don’t forget, the beforetimes), I explained the atmosphere at this conference as like a cult – not a cult in the unfavorable perception, but relatively what I referred to as a cult of innovation – a shared enthusiasm and excitement amongst pretty much everyone there for enhancing the apply of legislation and developing a far more just lawful method.
I wouldn’t have employed that phrase again this 12 months if not for the simple fact that other individuals did. A lot more than as soon as, unprovoked by me, other individuals I spoke to utilised the term in describing their sense of the conference. It is easy to recognize why. There is no other meeting in legal tech or maybe even lawful typically the place you can sit in a space of 2,500 individuals – most of them performing attorneys and lawful industry experts – and palpably experience their collective energy.
I’ve said it in advance of and I’ll say it once again: It is the folks who make ClioCon the superlative convention that it is. Clio describes its mission as to “transform the authorized practical experience for all,” and men and women come to ClioCon for the reason that they believe that in that mission – not automatically Clio’s firm mission, per se, but the mission of constructing a transformatively better lawful method.
Of class, none of these individuals would be there and none of that power would get introduced if Clio did not set on a wonderful meeting. If the attendees provide the fuel of their enthusiasm, Clio presents the auto that converts that enthusiasm into a memorable two-working day journey. Key options of the convention incorporated:
- A combine of educational classes and speakers that coated an array of topics each functional and imagined-provoking. Regrettably, mainly because I invested so much of ClioCon’s two times recording podcasts and in conferences, I created it to only a few periods, but the types I attended have been pretty fantastic.
- Robust keynote speakers. As noted above, the seminal occasion of ClioCon is always Newton’s opening keynote, where by he lays out his imagined on the point out and potential of the legal business and walks by means of Clio’s new product or service releases and enhancements. But other keynote speakers this calendar year ended up Mel Robbins, the previous lawyer who is now a very best-advertising author and best-rated podcaster Brian Banks, who was an NFL hopeful when he was arrested at age 16 and wrongfully convicted of sexual assault and who is now a speaker, lifestyle coach and author and Chris Voss, a previous FBI worldwide hostage negotiator, a Wall Avenue Journal bestselling creator, and CEO of The Black Swan Group.
- A buzzing show hall. I really do not know the quantities, but my perception was that this was ClioCon’s biggest exhibit corridor ever. It certainly felt that way, at the very least. Once again this calendar year, Clio stored to its practice of democratizing the exhibit hall by offering just about every seller the identical little booth, a exceptional solution that, I imagine, places bigger emphasis on the item and allows it communicate for alone.
- Functions. As it did past yr, ClioCon had an opening night time social gathering at the Grand Ole Opry and a 2nd-evening social gathering in a downtown Nashville honky tonk, entire with mechanical bull. The next night time occasion was a blow-out, lasting extensive into the evening and then spilling above into neighboring bars.
All of that explained, there was at minimum just one glitch from final 12 months that repeated this calendar year. I wrote last 12 months about the lengthy food stuff strains at the opening night time reception at the Opry that experienced men and women waiting around 30 minutes or a lot more just to get a little plate of food stuff and then anther 30 minutes to get a consume. Though the drink part obtained set this calendar year, the extensive meals lines have been again. I understood of several persons who gave up and returned to the hotel to try to eat. The trick turned out to be to wait right until the Opry clearly show began, when most all people went inside of to just take a seat. People of us still outdoors out of the blue had the food stuff trucks to ourselves.
One other slight recommendation I’d make for subsequent yr is to incorporate an choice in the app for observing the whole every day routine. Until I missed a little something, the only way to view the schedule in the application was primarily based on tracks. So you experienced to click just about every tab for every monitor to see what was coming up. I would have had a further tab for almost everything.
Insofar as I go to conferences as media, I take pleasure in the truth that many authorized tech conferences make an energy to accommodate the needs of the media. Numerous conferences present press rooms, for example, so we can have a quitter spot to publish and carry out interviews.
For numerous a long time now, Clio has taken the tactic of putting the media front and centre as a part of the meeting. It reserved a cordoned-off spot in the key registration location in which we all experienced sections for our specifics publications or podcasts, and those people of us who podcast each and every had our very own table to set up and record interviews. Clio also reserves media searing at keynotes ideal up entrance, so we can not only be near to the speaker, but get great images and videos.
A distinctive shout out to Clio’s media crew, which may well just be the greatest in the company, led by Pamela Smith, who is the Radar O’Reilly of PR men and women, anticipating reporters’ every single dilemma and need to have.
In the time it’s taken me to compose this, my airplane has created it from Nashville to New York, wherever I’m off to a different conference.
And, of system, now that I’ve last but not least modified to the Gaylord, ClioCon is going on to a new locale. The excellent information, that locale is Austin, Texas. I have previously got it reserved on my calendar, and I propose you do the exact same.