9 July 2020 - Interview tips

Recently TrailheaDX came to our screens to deliver a load of content rich presentations for the Admins, Developers and Architects of the Salesforce world. The day prior, TrailheaDX provided a careers fair for job seekers hoping to enter into this market and to others wanting to grow into new roles. 

I offered my services to help with the career fair. As a previous manager and recruiting employer I have reviewed many CV's and conducted countless interviews with budding candidates. I thought it my duty to offer my advice to those in need. 

I volunteered to conduct interviews to a selection of candidates. While I only had a short space of time with each person I was able to give some top tips to them. I thought I might be able to reach a wider audience if I wrote some of these tips here. 
Many of the candidates that I interviewed on the day had 'real' interviews with prospective employers later, and their session with me helped them to focus on elements to brush up with. The aim…

11 May 2020 - Exam Anxiety

A few Friday's ago I sat a Salesforce certification. It has taken me about 7 years to subject myself to do this again. 

2013 was the last time I sat any online proctored exam for a Salesforce certification. In that year I passed 2 consultancy exams, Sales Cloud and Service Cloud. Back then, there weren't many exams for a professional to take. It was limited to the Admin and Developer streams, the consultant exams and then the CTA route. 

While the exam paths are broadly the same the number of exams that someone can now take are greatly increased and as Salesforce builds on its portfolio it too is adding to the certification potential. If you're serious about Salesforce then you promote your experience with a certification to match.

So why the long stretch between exams you might ask? Well, the simple answer is, exams make me nervous. I'm not a natural brainiac. I have to study, I have to understand what it is that is being said to me. I'm not just someone who will acc…

10 April 2020 - Firsts and Lasts with Covid-19

28 February: The last time I felt normal and free to live my life when I went on holiday to Finland to go ice driving. 

7 March: The last time I was surrounded by a group of people who were not my close family and gave them hugs at a leaving party in a London pub.

10 March: The first time I felt really paranoid about a slightest cough or sneeze by a fellow commuter.

14 March: The last time I went to a pub for a drink and then to a restaurant for dinner out.

15 March: The first time the battery in one of the cars died as we hadn't driven for a few weeks and needing help from our neighbours to jump start it.

16 March: The last time I put on a dress, commuted on a train and tube and spent the day in an office working.

17 March: The first time the neighbourly WhatsApp group shared pictures of empty shelves in the local supermarket as people panic purchased items. All talk on the group was where people could get provisions.

20 March: The last time I travelled into central London to deliver Lo…

30 March 2020 - London's Calling

Ten days ago we delivered the 5th edition of London's Calling, a Salesforce Community Conference. I'm normally quicker to release post event write-ups but this year's took its toll on me, on all of us. 

As organisers we came back together last August to start planning the 2020 event. It was to be our 5th year and we needed to show some maturity in how we went about delivering. We started by looking at ourselves, how we worked as a team together and this helped to define an Organiser's Charter. The purpose of the Charter was to outline how we engaged with each other in terms of respect, communication, and time and how we would deliver the end product. We all signed up to the Charter. 

The next big milestone was venue. 4 years with Skills Matter had been a firm base to develop the event but we had now outgrown them. We needed extra capacity for attendees, and even with the threat of Brexit and impending doom on the UK economy (remember those heady days) we took a punt and …

5 February 2020 - In Memory of Laura Walker

I first met Laura in November 2012 where we worked together at a Salesforce consultancy, she a Consultant and me a Project Manager. We had both discovered Salesforce as Accidental Admins at previous end user roles and chosen to move into consultancy to develop our skills. I soon ended up on the same project as her, working on a Financial Services client and over the course of the project this colleague became my friend.  We both eventually moved on into other roles, consultancy, end user and contracting. Laura worked again with me for a short contracting stint in the back end of 2016. 
Laura was your classic Awesome Admin. She wore many hats to help an implementation across the line but her most favoured hat was that of a Business Analyst, and she was good at it too. Her feet were firmly planted in both camps. She spoke ‘business’ while translating their needs into technical requirements, having good knowledge of the Salesforce platform (including multiple certifications and reaching qu…

26 January 2020 - I’m going through the change with Prosci ADKAR

I’ve been reading a book about change management by Prosci and they use a term called ADKAR to define the different stages of change.
A = Awareness D = Desire K = Knowledge A = Ability R = Reinforcement
ADKAR can be used for both organisational and individual change management, it’s just the scale that is different.

January is a time of year that many of us consider New Year resolutions, and many can often be health related, to help us work off the excesses we piled on over the Christmas period.
While it wasn't not a personal resolution, I was conscious of my over cake consumption and felt the need to do something about it. I’m going to use Prosci ADKAR to explain how I could manage this individual change.
Awareness is the first element. Like all over indulgence being aware of the problem is the first step. I was aware that my shape had changed over the months and agreed, if I didn’t alter my behaviour, then it would continue to be a problem. If I acted upon this change then I was aware of…