I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Jen Nelson

This is the twenty-third post in my blog series in which I will feature people I know from the community: Salesforce employees, MVPs, User Group Leaders, Partners, and honestly, anyone who I’m connected with who is willing to share with me the answers to five simple questions. I hoping that this blog series will help everyone out in the community get better connected to others who are either like them, can help them, are nothing like them, can’t help them, or are simply people they haven’t met yet! After all, a stranger is simply a friend you don’t know yet.

For me, one of the greatest strengths of the Salesforce Ecosystem is its people and the connections that are shared.

So, if you are brave enough, even if you’ve never met me in person, fill out this form and I’ll feature you in an upcoming post. (In case I have confused anyone, the questions on the form about our relationship refers to you, the reader, and me, the author, Eric Dreshfield, and not the featured person in this post.)  Just beware, by completing the form, you are giving me permission to use that information in a future post, as well as allowing me to interject some of my own thoughts into your responses!

And now I introduce Salesforce MVP and co-leader of the Chicago Suburban User Group, Jen Nelson.


What’s your job title? Senior Solutions Architect, Configero (EFD – That sounds pretty impessive. So you build stuff, right?)

What does that mean you do?  I like to say it is part art and part science. Once the customer’s requirements have been collected, my job is to identify and present solutions for the more complex requirements. Solutions may include any combination of code, declarative configuration and or AppExchange apps. I look at factors like Admin experience (how hard will it be to implement AND maintain), User experience (how hard will it be to learn and use), scalability and compatibility with other solutions that they already have, they are currently implementing or they have on their roadmap.  It is great fun and, sometimes a great challenge, because every Salesforce Org really is a snowflake! (EFD – I like that! Every Salesforce org really is a snowflake. Mind if I quote you on that? What you meant by that is every org, every company’s use of the Salesforce platform and ecosystem is beautiful and melts at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, right? I kid…I’m a kidder. What you mean is that every company’s use of the Salesforce platform and ecosystem is unique, which really speaks volumes to the power of the platform.)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)?  I’ve been on the platform for 10 years. (EFD – 10 years? TEN years?!? Wow! You were around to witness the birth of the AppExchange…and a whole lot more.)

Bacon or sausage?  It’s bacon or nothing!

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  Both are import, especially if your goal is collaboration – it is awesome to be able to share knowledge but even cooler to say, I don’t know but let me introduce you to someone who might. (EFD – Let me introduce you to someone who might…hey! That gives me an idea for a blog post. Oh…oops. Nevermind.)

How did our relationship start, and when? Was there ever a time when I didn’t know you?  Seems impossible. I suppose we really got to know one and other planning Midwest Dreamin’ 2014. (EFD  – Ah yes…that little thing in Chicago. I think we knew each other prior to that, but going through such an ordeal gave us both new found respect for each other, the entire Midwest Dreamin’ planning team and everyone at Salesforce who helps organize Dreamforce.)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? One of my college jobs was working 3rd shift in a Pepperidge Farm Bakery – and I totally recreated the Lucy & Ethel conveyor belt scene with a batch of dinner rolls! (EFD – Did you still have that job after “Project Lucy”? And for the younger crowd, this is what Jen was referring to.)

You can find Jen on Twitter.

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