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Making active connections and strong teams in KaggleDays meetups.

Networking and Teaming-up

Paras Varshney Data Scientist Author LinkedIn Profile
3 weeks, 5 days ago · 5 min read Kaggle Days
Table of contents

Introduction

KaggleDays x Z by HP championship is a series of events that are conducted in collaboration with Z by HP as the sponsors with LogicAI and Kaggle as the organizers. The Championship consists of 12 online meetups held across the globe every 3 to 4 weeks with a final in-person event in Barcelona, Spain.

The 3 winning teams from every online meetup will be invited to participate in the in-person final and get a chance to become the ultimate Kaggle Days champion and win Z by HP workstations.

KaggleDays is a community of more than 7 Million Data Scientists from all across the globe with diverse cultures and demographics with access to worldwide reach, accessible from anywhere through the meetups.

Average top 10 teams on Leaderboard

Teaming up is one of the most important aspects that affect the performance of a team in a KaggleDays Championship. On average most of the top teams, in any competition, tend to utilize all the positions of the teams and fill up all the 4 positions with their teammates. This opens up opportunities for beginners or newcomers to find teammates and network with experienced data scientists to work together in the 4-hour competition. We have analyzed that most of these teams, once made, make stronger connections with their team members and tend to maintain their integrity for future meetups as well.

This is justified by the analysis that on average the top teams are always 4 members with rarely any team having less than 4 members and placed in the top 10 on the leaderboard.

Teaming up Leverages Performance

The performance of a team is directly correlated with the number of team members and the experience they bring with them to the table. We have observed teams splitting up the task with different sections of the work to be done parallel with each member developing each section which boosts their efficiency working together and training different models all at the same time.

Slack channel for Networking

Most of the time new members join individually without any team member. So it becomes super necessary for them to hunt for the best teammates and form a stronger team that would let them stand out on the leaderboard. The slack channel to find the teammates is one of the best resources where team members can share their public profile and their experiences and find people with similar interests and profiles. Participants utilize the slack channel to network with other data scientists and develop connections for not just being a teammate in the competition but that last outside the competition as well in professional life.

Since the start of the very first meetup the slack channel has helped a lot of newcomers as well as proficient data scientists to find compatible teammates and in some cases, who have even helped them even win the competitions.

In addition to the Slack community channels, participants have the privilege to network on the Live meetup chat on ClickMeeting where the meetups are hosted.

Participants learn teaming up and leadership spirits.

Each and every competition is designed in such a way that they leave the participants with a curiosity to explore more and research deeper about the competition topic. These competitions not only develop skills that require participants to solve quick time-based competitions that strengthen their technical skills but also teach them some very important skills such as time management, team building, and leadership skills. 

During a meetup competition, participants have to manage their time very precisely and not waste their time experimenting a lot and testing new ideas and instead focus more on trying to develop the best solutions in a short duration based on their experience and skills. Within the same duration of 4 hours, they have to build a stronger team and in some cases, they have to even lead the entire team to bring the best outcome on the Leaderboard.

Kaggle Community Engagement (Post meetup)

Participants do not restrict themselves to engaging with others only during the competition but also actively participate in discussions, slack channels as well as the Kaggle community forum. Participants actively share their solutions on how they were able to score some positions on the leaderboard and what was their approaches and ideas. Others participants learn from their techniques and discuss different code blocks which can be incorporated into their pipelines.

For some competitions, We have even seen participants discussing even after a few weeks from the deadline of the competition to discuss new techniques that can be incorporated into their solutions to develop much stronger models to generate better results on the leaderboard for the next meetup.

Post-meetup discussion on Kaggle

Everyone including the students who learn from these discussions or the working professionals who incorporate these techniques into their real-world projects actively shares their feedback and experiences in the forum with others. 

New connections were made during the meetup.

Generally, participants highly appreciate KaggleDays events and share their feedback, One such feedback that we keep getting from the participants was they were able to network and meet new data scientists in every meetup and were able to develop better connections on a personal level.

Participants’ commitment to the community has been analyzed and it is observed that after every meetup participants feel super excited to contribute to the open-source Kaggle community and share their work with the world. KaggleDays meetup helps participants to develop better connections and become more active in the global Kaggle community.

The following chart shows the feedback provided by the participants regarding how much they are connected to the Kaggle community on a scale of 1 to 5 after they have attended a meetup. A very significant number of participants experience their connections with the community getting stronger and better after every meeting they attend.

Live interaction with the Ambassadors

Participants are not only restricted to meeting other participants but also get the chance to attend a live presentation from a top Grandmaster who is generally the ambassador with the partner company and who has been consistently performing well on the Kaggle platform and has cracked the techniques to win Kaggle Competitions. These live presentations are filled with tremendous knowledge and the experiences of these grandmasters which are always very detailed and help a lot of participants to learn state-of-the-art new techniques and approaches to solve real-world problems.

The mentored QnA section during this live presentation is a one-stop solution for the participants to ask questions directly to the Grandmasters and get their questions answered right at the very moment.

Mentoring booths from Grandmasters and Masters

It is well understood that competitions like these (which are time-bound) can sometimes be super hectic and stressful, and participants might need some support or guidance. To solve this problem, we have an exclusive mentoring both where participants can take mentorship on a 1:1 basis with the top Grandmasters and Masters helping the participants actively during the entire duration of the competition.

In the mentoring boot, participants have the freedom to discuss any section of their approach or take tips and tricks on how they can solve the problem in a better way. Not just limited to the competition topic, participants can discuss technical things which are outside the scope of the competition as well.

Participants Thoughts!

Our client’s feedback means a lot to us. Based on the feedback we receive we always keep thriving towards getting better at what we do. Here are a few comments from the feedback that we received from our participants at the end of every meetup.

“Abhishek Thakur — Topic was well chosen and well explained. Though I might not have been able to follow every bit of what he said, it sets the direction on what i should look-out for upskilling myself -Abdou
“I partcpaints for fun and get out of life pressure , i dont know how i write the code from 4am to 8am none sleep and cant see screen making font size extra-large, hehe but i love it! -Almamon

 

Paras Varshney Data Scientist Author LinkedIn Profile
3 weeks, 5 days ago · 5 min read Kaggle Days

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