31 December 2018 - Review of 2018

Its time to take a moment and reflect on the year 2018 and my Salesforce world. Its been a good one!

February - London's Calling 
The London Community Conference, London's Calling, came calling again for the 3rd year and I was lucky to be selected to be one of their speakers. This year was different for me as I volunteered to help the team to organise the day, by managing all the catering for the event and keeping the speakers to time. For the food I decided to go for pies. They are a great British institution and very warming on a cold winter's day. Just right for a conference. Bolstered with branded cakes, it was a winning formula. Who knew comfort food would be so popular...

My talk was about How CPQ Gave Visibility, Control and Lessons Learnt for a Business. I had just completed my first CPQ implementation and wanted to share what I had learnt from this journey. CPQ is still quite a specialist field of knowledge and I wanted to highlight how best to tackle a project of this kind so you can achieve successful results and avoid the elephant in the room.

Well I'm pleased to say that for the 2019 event I will be a full co-organiser of London's Calling. I do love this event as it brings together a range of people from all over the world into one place to share their love and knowledge of all things Salesforce. Its by the Community, for the Community and oozes true Ohana spirit. 

May - World Tour Week
Ah, my favourite week in the UK. Its when the Salesforce World Tour machine rolls into town. For London we don't just celebrate for the day but make a week of it. On Monday night we held the London Admins group at Salesforce Tower and kicked off with a huge World Tour Cake to share with everyone. We were joined by Evangelists Gillian and Marc and also got to meet Astro's mum, Domenique and Eric gave us an update on the Summer 18 release with Codey socks swag giveaway. We returned to the Tower the next night for the Developers turn and many of us gathered again in a pub on Wednesday evening for Speaker drinks. 

With such a fun-packed run up, I was all ready for the big day on Thursday for Salesforce World Tour. For some of us Ladies in Tech, it started with a special breakfast session with Tony Prophet. He wanted to hear from us on our issues in the UK Community. 

This year's thoroughly deserved golden hoodie winner was Gemma Emmett and she kindly asked me to be part of her support team for the day. It meant that we got into the keynote room way early so we might have enjoyed a moment on the stage before everyone rolled in. 

This year's World Tour was really special for me in many ways, speaking with Tony, supporting Gemma but also having the opportunity to speak at the event for the first time. I did a version of my CPQ talk from London's Calling, How Salesforce CPQ Brought Visibility and Control to Sales which went down really well and had loads of questions afterwards. CPQ is a hot topic!

June - Legally Not SpaForce 
Suffice to say, it had already been a bit of a year for some of our Ohana so a group of us decided to come together for a day of giving back to ourselves. We called it SpaForce, although legally we're not meant to, but just for the day, and just between ourselves, we did. Normally, we spend much of our time either working hard at our day jobs or out in the community that sometimes we need to remember ourselves and take time to stop. It was such a great day of wellbeing and relaxation. We came home feeling more connected to each other, knowing that others had our back, and we could call on someone if we needed help. Even back then, we didn't really appreciate just how important that would be. We've all learnt that its crucial to let people into your life and share experiences. It can help to unload your personal stresses but also to give advice to others who may also be in the same boat. Its good to talk. 

September - My Blog Anniversary
I started this blog when I was feeling trapped in my role and thought that writing about it would help to manage my feelings and share my experiences with you, my reader. I made a promise to commit 2 entries per month and I'm pleased to say that I have maintained that average, even if occasionally it might be 3 entries in one month to compensate. Inspiration has come from many different angles of my life, mostly a Salesforce leaning but sometimes from other tech based encounters or seminars I have attended. I've received great feedback from my reader base so I know that some of my subjects areas have touched others which gives me motivation to keep going. Lets see where 2019 takes me.

September - Trailhead Double Ranger
I made a promise to myself that I would reach Trailhead Double Ranger in time for Dreamforce 18. I had hit a personal goal of 150 badges for London World Tour in May so I had a 4 month window to attain another 50. My personal learning time is generally confined to weekends and evenings. My work day is usually too hectic to give it my full attention. So, I used my time carefully by grabbing moments at weekends, while delayed at an airport and even cheeky badge attainment at breakfast in the morning to hit my goal. I made it, with about a week to go. Phew!

September - Funding Circle Customer Case Study by Salesforce
Also just in time for Dreamforce 18, the Salesforce Marketing department released a customer case study about how my company, Funding Circle, uses Salesforce in its day to day transactions. It was an honour to work with the Marketing team to put together our story and lovely to see it on Salesforce's website. customer-success-stories-funding-circle

September - Dreamforce
I've been lucky to attend Dreamforce for 3 years in a row. Its such a massive event that really has to be experienced to be believed. This year was another first for me as I had a talk about How the Trailblazer Community Can Act as Your Mentor accepted as a Campfire session. 

The rest of my week was kept busy with another unofficial talk about Change Management, helping out at the Ladies Be Architects session and putting my time into volunteering at the Community Cove and speaking with a range of attendees on where to find their nearest group. I finished the week off with my feet in a hot tub while being interviewed for Trailhead podcast, as you do.

October - Inspire East 
A new Community Conference came into town, called Inspire East. The Cambridge Community Group Leaders noticed that the East of the UK weren't getting the reach of Salesforce that maybe London based customers were familiar with to and wanted to bring the world of Salesforce to Cambridge. I was happy to help them and spoke about the subject of Secrets of Implementing Projects and Managing Change. What was interesting about this inaugural conference was the vibe of the day. It was a more intimate gathering and their keynote speakers focussed on happiness and wellbeing in the workplace.

November - French Touch Dreamin' 
Well, who can say no to a quick trip to Paris as its such a beautiful city, to spend some more quality time with the Ohana. I was delighted to be chosen again, having spoken at the inaugural event 2 years ago. This time my topic was about Managing Change Without Losing Focus on Delivery and sharing my secrets on the #TheoryOfCake as part of my 4C's. Well done to the team for another great conference and hitting the 400 delegate mark. 

Of course, throughout the year I have been a very active leader for the London Admins Community Group. We meet each month and have a regular audience of 70-80 attendees. Its a great group with so many wanting to contribute and sponsor. This year I've really felt the group come closer together. We are sharing more personally, while politically everything seems to be melting, we are standing stronger together. And its not just the Admins but this can be felt in the other groups I'm a member of, the Developers and Women in Tech too.

A packed 2018. I wonder what 2019 brings? Happy New Year.


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