Wednesday, 19 September 2018

My Road to Dreamforce Part 5: The Final Countdown

Earlier in the year when I started my #AwesomeAdmin journey, I set some goals:

I certainly have been listening to as many podcasts and webinars as I can, I got certified on May 1, and I hit Ranger status on July 1. I'm happy to say that attending Dreamforce is the last thing off my list, and that it was this tweet that really helped me get there.

The wonderful Admin Evangelist, Gillian Bruce, responded asking how she could help me achieve my goals, which lead to meeting other members of the Admin team for world tour in Toronto, which lead to the idea for Empower your Admin and Supercharge your Business.

If you'd had told me when I sent out this tweet on April 6 that not only would I be attending Dreamforce, I'd be speaking at it, I'd have told you you were dreaming! Quite honestly, this is how it feels when it comes up in conversation:  

My co-presenter Michelle and I have spoken pretty much every second day for the last few weeks, but our conversations have progressed from content and design to what we're going to wear and what else we're looking forward to at Dreamforce, which is a welcome progression, but make no mistake - we've both put a lot of work into it.

We had out final run through with Salesforce staff on Monday, in which we were joined by our session manager Susan Smith, and the one and only Mike Gerholdt. After all, it is because of him that this session came to be! He inspired both Michelle and I earlier in the year, and we joined forces to hopefully impart some wisdom on some of our fellow #AwesomeAdmins.

So now it's the final countdown. Four sleeps until I board a plane for the Golden state! Twitter is a buzz with Dreamforce veterans sharing their tips and tricks for getting through the week, and the excitement is palpable!

I can't wait to see some of my favourite people, learn, and well, whatever else is in store for me at my first Dreamforce! (I'm really excited and trying to keep it as toned down as I can...)

Soundtrack: The Final Countdown - Europe

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Road to Dreamforce Part 4: You're Welcome

Are you attending my session, Empower your Admin and Supercharge your Business?

Welcome to this week's Adventures in Salesforcing, or rather, E Komo Mai!

I've only been active in the community since Trailheadx in March, but that is in huge part thanks to Misty Jones and Monica Sandberg, who make it their mission to welcome new members to the Ohana, or as they like to say "E Komo Mai", which means "welcome" or "come on in" in Hawaiian.

Misty and Monica have been performing welcoming duties since they joined the community in 2012 and 2011 respectively. When they attended their first Dreamforces, they knew no one and nothing about what they were getting themselves in to - it can be easy to feel alone amongst a sea of 170,000+ people when you're by yourself. Since then, they've set out to make sure that no one has to go through it alone.

They both know the importance of being integrated into the Ohana as soon as you can as a means of getting the most out of Salesforce events, and what they can do for you. For me, it opened me up to so many new people and new experiences, including attending and speaking at Dreamforce!

They've been arranging dinners and meet ups for a number of years, and took on the phrase of E Komo Mai before this year's Trailheadx. I signed up for as many dinners at Trailheadex as I could, because I too knew nothing and no one. As a matter of fact, it was at the first of these that I actually met my future Dreamforce co-presenter, Michelle! Here is my official E Komo Mai photo with Misty and Monica (and Lacey!).

So now on to E Komo Mai at Dreamforce. Are you flyin' solo, looking to make some new friends, or just want to recognise a few faces in the crowd through the week? Well I have some good news for you! The official E Komo Mai Welcome Party is happening on Monday September 24, 2-4pm. You can register to attend here: E Komo Mai Registration

Misty and Monica have a session at Dreamforce about their Trailblazer journeys, and how the power of the Ohana has helped them - Trailblazer Community 101: Hack Your Career, Life, & Improve the World. They will also be welcoming new members of the Ohana at the Trailblazer Community Cove Gratitude tree on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 12:30pm - 1:00pm.

So whether or not you're brand new to Dreamforce, and/or Salesforce, E Komo Mai. I hope you're able to connect with members of the community, and make your week an unforgettable one - come on in, the water's warm!


Soundtrack: You're Welcome - from "Moana"

Thursday, 6 September 2018

My Road to Dreamforce Part 3: Falling

Have you bookmarked my session, Empower your Admin and Supercharge your Business, yet?

I'm going to level with you. This has not been a good week for me.

I took a break from my Salesforce life this past weekend while I indulged in another favourite past time, attending Fan Expo Canada. This meant two days off work, four days at the convention, and being completely exhausted at the end of each day.

With only a few weeks left to go for Dreamforce, I spent a whole five days not thinking about my session. And then I had the post-con blues REAL bad, and was trying to catch up on work, and thinking about what I have going on outside of work and Salesforce related preparations, and I started to feel really overwhelmed.

Anxiety started to set in, and I started to feel hopeless, like I was falling. How the hell was I going to do this? 

I called my session manager, who put me at ease, and helped me see that it's all going to come together. My wonderful co-presenter helped too - I certainly couldn't do this without her!

I also partook in some self care in the form of my favourite Canadian TV show, Kim's Convenience, as I was lucky enough to meet some of the cast over the weekend. Things started to not seem so bad. I have a very supportive session network in the form of my session manager, co-presenter, and many others in the Ohana, and I know I can do this.

So while I'm no longer feeling overwhelmed, I'm feeling cautiously optimistic - this is a huge deal after all, and I've still got a lot of work to do, but I can't wait!

To all those of you out there working like crazy on your sessions, or even just trying to make sure you have all your work taken care of before Dreamforce - hang in there. You're not alone, and you will get through it. Indulge in some self care, talk to someone about it, and you will be amazing!

All smiles - the author, at FanExpo Canada, dressed as Wonder Woman, with Paul Sun-Hyung Lee and Andrew Phung.

Soundtrack: Falling - The Cat Empire (my all time favourite band)

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