Category Archives: Social

5 #DF14 Resources (my short – and in no way comprehensive – list)

What 5 resources should I have in my digital back pocket as #DF14 gets underway?Give Back at Dreamforce 14

I thought you’d never ask! Here are 5 things I’d recommend to anyone (especially my nonprofit and higher ed brethren) interested in staying looped in at Dreamforce 14.

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Filed under Community, DF14, Higher Ed, Nonprofit, Social

Keeping up on Ze Twitters @Dreamforce

Yes, there are a TON of Dreamforce-related Twitter hashtags and handles…

…but these are the biggies. If you keep up with these hashtags and handles, you will MORE than stay in the know!

CommunityConvCloud

  • @CRMjen:  (Yep, this is my Twitter handle) Not that my handle is necessarily a top ‘Twitter @Dreamforce’ resource, BUT I’d love to connect with you @Dreamforce and Twitter is a GREAT way to make that connection happen!
  • #DF14: THE official Dreamforce 14 hashtag
  • #DFGivesTHE official hashtag of the One Million Meals Dreamforce Community food drive
  • #DFCoS: Official Dreamforce Circles of Success tweetstakes hashtag.You can win some pretty snazzy prizes  (right up to a premium #DF14 pass) just for sharing packing tips. I mean, why even think about it? Tweet to win? Yes, please.  
  • #DF14NGO: For all things Nonprofit at Dreamforce 14, use this hashtag!
  • #DFHED: Stay in touch with the Higher Ed crowd at Dreamforce 14 by searching for and Tweeting with this hashtag.
  • @Dreamforce: Official Dreamforce Tweets
  • @SFDCFoundation: Official Salesforce Foundation handle.
  • @Salesforce: Official Salesforce handle for the host of this shindig
  • @ExacttargetOfficial ExactTarget Marketing Cloud handle

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Filed under Community, DF14, Higher Ed, Nonprofit, Social

The New Way to Socialize at Dreamforce 2014

You know what? I’m with Mr. Mark Ross AND Harvard on this one. The (un)official greeting of Dreamforce 2014 *should* be the Fist Bump!

The Swamps of Salesforce-Dagobah

Influenza. Enterovirus. Ebola.

Ok, come back, it’s alright. Just reading the names won’t make you sick, alright?

It’s no secret that 2014 has been a bit of a banner year for infectious disease. And, not to scare anybody, but a LOT of us are about to all gather in a location with 150,000 other people from around the world, all at the same time. I don’t know about you, but that gives me just a liiiiittle pause.

But there is a solution! And it is a good one. Recently, the Harvard Medical School published its findings on the nature of hand-to-hand communications, and the likelihood of transmission of diseases in its different forms. The short version: fist bumps are a safer and cleaner alternative to handshakes.

That’s right, you read correctly. Harvard has officially stated that we should all be fist bumping.

fistbumpforhealth

Absurd as it sounds, there is a very…

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I would rather …

I would rather die of passion than of boredom — Vincent van Gogh

March 30, 2014 marks Vincent van Gogh’s 161 birthday. March 29 marks my considerable lower number birthday. I

Vincent van Gogh, Self Portrait, 1889, Oil on canvas

Vincent van Gogh, Self Portrait, 1889, Oil on canvas

didn’t know that van Gogh was also a “March Baby” until I was doing a bit of research about him after being taken with the quote which prompted me to write this post. But the timing, coupled with the inspiration, seemed an appropriate opportunity to write.

Dear readers, if you’re still there for me, know that in my absence I have been working hard to come up to speed in my newest endeavor. For those of you who may not know, I’m honored to be working with the Salesforce Foundation supporting the world’s best nonprofits and higher educators with their digital and social media programs. My only purpose at the Foundation is to help organizations – amazing, inspiring, and excellent organizations – be even more amazing, inspiring, and excellent.

I’ve had many “I can’t believe this is my life” moments in the short time I’ve been working with the Foundation, and the promise of many more to come. But here’s the thing, I am also getting to feed my customers’ thoughts, challenges, and feedback to the incredible product team who is equally up for the challenge of building the future. It’s a thrill ride. It is the junction of my passion and my skills.

It is – simply – a #DREAMjob.

My involvement with my customers has already profoundly changed the way I view time. I’ve never had more to do – never – and yet I feel more invigorated than ever. Somehow, I’m also finding the time to give back to my community more than ever, taking up hobbies, learning a language, and enjoying my family deeply. Time has expanded in this even more deeply passion-driven version of my life.

In previous (and also awesome) roles, I was always busy. Hell, anyone who knows me knows I prefer to be at least a bit over-committed in my professional life. But this is a different level of busy, this is the kind of busy that is impossible, but worth trying. Worth really, really going for it. Why? Because I get to work with the people who are literally building the future.

I am honored. I am challenged. I am up for it.

Happy Birthday, Mr. van Gogh. And to you, whoever you are, may your day shine brightly and your talents expand to reach the challenges in front of you.

Learn more about the Salesforce Foundation, their 1/1/1 philanthropic model, and how their customers rock it out. And then spread the word. 

Have a thought, feedback, inspiration, or comment? Do tell!

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March 26, 2014 · 7:13 am

It’s About You and Me and the Newness [MiniPost]

Meeting new people is a gift.

Figuring out the ways you connect, your similarities, detecting differences, and considering how your future may change as a result of this catalyst can be exhilarating. In those same initial moments, you may also be confronted with your own shortcomings from a completely new perspective. This mirror-view is made possible by the unique chemistry created by the newness of the connection in front of you.  These new connections tend to shed light on the best parts of yourself as well as your opportunities for improvement.

Why the MiniPost?

Well, recently I’ve been lucky enough to get to hang with an entirely new bunch of people. Because I’m a consultant, I do get to meet new people pretty frequently, but it’s rare to have any significant amount of time with the people I meet to simply ‘hang’. So, when given the opportunity to connect in real life to new people, I’ll take it  – with a vengeance!

We started out a group of strangers, and over the course of just a few days working, eating, and socializing together we came to genuinely know each other. And – for my part – I really liked the lot of them.  But just as fascinating as it was to meet a completely new bunch of people who I respected and enjoyed, it was almost as if I was “re-meeting” myself. It got me to thinking:

novelty breeds clarity.

In this clarity, I remember things about myself I’d forgotten. Good and Bad. It’s in those moments of newness that each of us have the opportunity to reflect and refine who we are. As individuals and as organizations, we should take it.

Even though some of the realizations this clarity brings may be unpleasant, or less than flattering, isn’t it our responsibility to ourselves to relentlessly pursue the very best version of ourselves? By setting this pursuit as an unflappable goal, we then remove shame as an option when realizing there’s an area ripe for improvement. In fact, it makes that discovery rather exciting!

Thank you to my new colleagues and friends for reminding me that life is evolutionary. And that I still have plenty of room to evolve. May you find your own evolution just as exhilarating a proposition.

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Filed under life-work balance, Social

This is very exciting [real edition]

Photo Credit: BeautifulPeopleATX [Flickr]This week marks a milestone for me. One year ago, I officially moved from being an “internal resource” and became “A Consultant”. Those that know me well know that I agonized over this decision before taking the plunge.

My previous gig was awesome. I had cool puzzles to solve, an expectation to be creative and the trust of leadership to do my things my way. Mostly, that’s a rare and beautiful thing, especially when you get all the best tools to play with. Add to that the fact that I was lucky enough to have some really passionate and dedicated folks on my team and, well, you’re in a post that is (if you’re like me) hard to abandon.

Esteban Kolsky was right

But I went for it anyway. And here I stand one year later absolutely certain that it was the best career move I’ve ever made. I love consulting. I love my clients. I love the insane deadlines and my new-found ability to rock a presentation that didn’t exist like 15 minutes ago. I love having (even more) of an inside scoop on what’s going on in the industry. I adore working with the analysts, bloggers, and product developers who are – literally – shaping tomorrow for the rest of us.

While at a Social CRM conference in Silicon Valley last year, I asked Esteban Kolsky how I’d know if “Going Consultant” was the right move for me. I was feeling very fragile as this was in the first weeks of having made the move. I probably looked like a human version of a newly hatched bird experimenting with its wings for the first time. Sad. Uncertain. Needy. Gross.

Anyhoo, Mr. Kolsky looked into my eyes and said (essentially): Give it a year. You’ll never look back.

On Going For It

I’ve given it a year and I’m not looking back. I love the velocity of the SCRM industry. I an thrilled to know and to meet and to work alongside the incredible people who are making magic happen every single day. I love that this community is so connected that in almost any city in almost any country I can reach out to folks I’ve connected with through our shared passion and have lunch, dinner, or coffee with a friend.

I’d wager Mr. Kolsky doesn’t remember this exchange. However, I won’t forget it. His (probably polite) encouragement coupled with my desire to strike out into new frontiers and the support of a truly amazing mentor all helped me to quiet the monsters of doubt. These monsters were the voices in my head who derided me for walking away from the Corporate America sure thing on the fast path to VP-dom. They’re silent now.

Have I been too busy this year? You bet! Have I (still) been a workaholic struggling with work-life balance? Absolutely. But I’m working on it. I really am. And in the meantime, I just love this stuff and I  can’t wait to see what the next 365 days holds.

Next Stop: The Hat Store

To those who are on this ride with me: thank you. For your support and encouragement and patience. You know who you are (and if you don’t, I’m taking the next week or so to let all of you know!). Without you, I’m nothing. Really.

So, what do the next 365 days hold? Who knows! I can wager, and I know what I’m excited to work on…but the industry is accelerating and life just isn’t guaranteed. My goal: hang on to my hat and swing for the bleachers. 

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July 9, 2012 · 9:03 am

Yeah, I Love This.

This weekend we held our third Annual Florida Salesforce.com User Group Event, “Dreamforce to YOU – Florida“. It was our most ambitious effort to date, with 12 sessions spanning from Project methodologies to a highly attended Developer Deep Dive session. We had two guest speakers this year, and with them onsite, it brought our Salesforce.com MVP count up to 4 – I speculated that meant we were likely the highest MVP count per capita on Saturday ( I could be wrong, but it was fun to think so!).

But the BEST thing – the most exciting moment – for me was when attendees stopped me in the hall and said things like, I can’t WAIT to try the new formula I just learned! or I think I may have just found a job!. That’s what this whole Community thing is about, really.

How did this happen?

I started attending the Salesforce.com Orlando User Group over 4 years ago out of desperation – I needed to find employees who were creative, passionate, and really really into Cloud Computing. I was having NO luck through traditional methods. Cloud computing was then (as it is now) a hot profession, and talented folks weren’t just sitting about hoping someone would call. So after trying to get my HR department fired up to help me (no luck at the time) and then outsourcing through local headhunters, I faced the hard reality that it. Just. Wasn’t. Happening.

My last ditch effort IMMEDIATELY paid off. I met my first hire at that first meeting. He was a super star (still is!) looking for his next new challenge. He was just the guy I was looking for: smart as a whip, creative as hell, and looking for a tough puzzle to solve. I had a really tough puzzle and we made it official as fast as I could get the paperwork pushed through. That was the beginning of a great era: the era of getting things done.

I credit the Salesforce.com User Groups for making that year ‘happen’. I know I’d never have been able to push the ball as far down-field without the Community.

From there, the User Group and the extended Community has personally brought me friends, new skills, creative ways to attack my org’s issues, camaraderie, and the constant drive to do better. I’ve connected to some of the smartest people I’ve ever met (and that, my friends, is saying something!) through this Community. I was happy to become a co-leader of the Orlando User Group when there was a need shortly after I joined the User Group. Since then, we’ve had three Dreamforce to YOU events, many local User Group meetings, socials, and impromptu meetups. It’s been a fabulous ride!

Why is Community #AWESOME?

The idea for Dreamforce to YOU was simply to bring a day of content and collaboration to our Orlando User Group members. Co-leader Joshua Hoskins and I had just returned from Dreamforce 2009 and were totally

out of our minds with enthusiasm. What struck us then (and still gets me now) was how quickly things were accelerating in this space. We thought our members would probably take a Saturday to get together to talk about it. We were right! The first Dreamforce to YOU has very little resemblance to the event we put on this year – but the bottom line is the same.

It’s GREAT to have the camaraderie, connections, creativity, and collaboration an active Community brings. If you have a passion, and want to surround yourself with the people who can help you become the best version of yourself in that space, search for an organized community. There are Communities for just about everything now … and thanks to the little ol’ interwebs, a quick search gets you all details you need to jump in.

Find YOUR Community. Then Jump In. If you do it with a vengeance, it’ll pay off in spades (for you and for the group). I promise.

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Filed under CRM Evangelization, Service, Social, User Group

I’ll be reblogging all #DF2UFL posts to my site & hope to see you there (http://df2ufl.eventbrite.com/) on Saturday, March 31, 2012

Dreamforce to You - Florida!

We love our Sponsors!

It’s true. We just simply couldn’t do this without them. We’re bringing Salesforce.com users together for an entire day of content, best practice, learning what’s new and how to use it in your company. We’re custom building the agenda based on the attendee preferences, AND we’re not charging people to attend. So, without the funding the Sponsors provide, we literally wouldn’t be able to make this event happen. Most of these Sponsors are active with our User Groups already, and all of these Sponsors are dedicated to helping to promote the event so we can meet our Event Team goal of building up the core User Group community which benefits us all.

Thank you from the Dreamforce to YOU – Florida Event Team to our 2012 Sponsors for supporting the Florida Salesforce.com Community!

Take a minute to get to know our dedicated 2012 Sponsors

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Filed under Service, Social, User Group

Fast and FABULOUS

Well, I can’t tell you how much time I’ve been devoting to all the amazing twists and turns happening in the SCRM (see that? I’ve even adopted the ‘S’!) world since last we met on these virtual pages.

Some undeniable truths:

  • Social is the new black. Got that?
  • Another thing…Analytics that used to take me 6 months of hard work, mental gymnastics, and sleepless nights now happens in an instant. Prettier than I could have ever done it back in the day.
  • I have to say things like ‘back in the day’ more and more.
  • The Cloud is ubiquitous.
  • Mobile and Touch are just ‘how we do it’ now.
  • Your Mom is on Facebook. Your Mom (it turns out) is likely an early Pinterest adopter.
  • Business is struggling to keep up, to make sense of it, and to use their budget wisely.
  • Shiny-Thing Syndrome is rampant. RAMPANT! It is one of my least favorite corporate maladies. Of course, ‘That’s Simple-itis‘ is worse, but I really want to stay on track so I’ll just move on.
  • This post is meant to serve as my quick but exciting (to me) return to my blog as well as to let you know where I’ve been.

Exciting stuff indeed, this is!Hi. I’ve been reading, thinking, talking, implementing, and researching in the middle of this incredible time. At least once a day I feel so excited that I either pick up the phone, compose a tweet, start a chat, or – if I have to – craft an email to let another colleague know how AWESOME it is to do what we do. They know it already, of course, and are very likely kind of getting sick of these interruptions but I just can’t help it. This is hands down the most fun I’ve ever had doing my job. That’s coming from a person (read: nerd) who lists her professional pursuit as a hobby lo these many years.

At any rate, the customer is getting heard. The constituency and community is being recognized. Why? Because we created the equalizing tools that foster this channel. As a result, business needs to LISTEN (and that is just about the MOST exciting opportunity to amaze and delight there is). As I dive into some of the more effective ways to weave listening into traditional Sales, Service, and Community efforts, I just get more blown away. We are really starting to be able to connect with our customers and colleagues and fans and detractors. We’ve got lots to learn from each of these connections and can finally dive into the Big Data (another shiny thing? Not a chance.) with elegance and speed.

So if this is interesting in the least, keep reading! I’ve got a few of my favorite sources below to get your motor running!

  • Paul Greenberg on ZDNet. I’ve said it before but this guy just GETS it. In a big way. Kind of my Yoda, he is.
  • Radian6 Providing TONS of really useful strategic and tactical content via many channels. Like everything they do: AWESOME
  • Kelly Craft Blogs on Social CRM, Gadgetry, and getting it done. Very sharp lady.
  • Christopher Barger MAY be the Yoda of Social Business planning?! Read his blog on Forbes, you should.
  • Salesforce.com Blog They’re taking a ton of big guns’ ammo and making it available to you. Really pretty and very actionable.
  • HubSpot puts a TON of content out for your consideration. I highly recommend their Webinars as well.

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Filed under CRM Evangelization, Social

Occupy Wall Street = Corporate Spring?

WelcomeToTheSocialEnterprise (Dreamforce 2011)

No matter which side of the issue you’re on, Occupy Wall Street is empowered by the same technology that sparked the Arab Spring. It was just August when Marc Benioff stood on the keynote stage at Dreamforce 11 and said onstage: “The technology is creating the change and the transformation…It’s not so long from now that we’ll start to hear about a Corporate Spring…an Enterprise Spring…When will the first CEO fall for the same reason?… I think about that myself every day… It is more important to listen than ever before…That’s the Social Revolution.”

Yesterday we lost a legend in our time, one of the visionaries truly responsible for pushing the development of the technology that facilitates these movements. While watching the inimitable Steve Jobs’ commencement address of the 2005 Stanford University graduating class last night, it hit me: Occupy Wall Street has the potential to make change happen and its spine is Social.

Source: Occupy Wall Street… is [a] leaderless resistance movement with people of many colors, genders and political persuasions. The one thing we all have in common is that We Are The 99% that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1%. We are using the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic to achieve our ends and encourage the use of nonviolence to maximize the safety of all participants.

Strangely, a fair bit of the social sentiment last night regarding Occupy Wall Street (#OccupyWallStreet) focused on losing a “member of the 1%” as a scene-stealer to the press coverage of the movement. Indeed, to say Steve Jobs was remarkably successful is a huge understatement. As a result (and rightly so), his passing garnered tremendous press. But the Occupy Wall Street movement is fueled by technology sprung from Steve Jobs’  imagination and the imagination of the people inspired by the possibility of “what’s next”.

As my today begins, I redouble my dedication to being a virtuoso implementor of Social technology for business and non-profits, because people deserve the transparency. That’s all people. The 99% and the 1%. Let’s face it, for the 1% dead set on believing that Social is about “kids on Facebook”, the Corporate Spring may just be devastating.

Source: OccupyWallStreet.org

Every organization should be absolutely clamoring to understand what their advocates love about them and what their detractors don’t. And the impact of both to the health of the organization. Every organization should tap into their most valuable resource (the 99% of the workplace) if they expect to get the real skinny on what’s working and what isn’t. Social insights and collaboration tools not only give you the arena to have that conversation, but the dedication to building that arena tells employees: Your voice is important. Listening and acting on what you think, say, and feel about us helps us become better. That dedication, if backed by honesty, will help to retain your top talent. Even when the unemployment rates begin to fall. In the interim, there is something wonderful about rewarding good people for innovative ideas that drive success. It’s not about sides or percentages. It is about communicating and respect.

Talent is rare, and expensive to acquire (nice, plain-english blog entry here from Jeff Kortes). Not listening to your talented team drives attrition rates up. Quite possibly, your  Customer Service, Sales Efficiency, and product quality rates decline in parallel. Engaged employees, like engaged customers, like an engaged constituency are highly effective marketers of your brand / message.

What does this have to do with Occupy Wall Street? Maybe Everything.

That’s Social. And I like it.

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Filed under Corporate Culturati, CRM Evangelization, LinkedIN, Service, Social