I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Lauren Jordan

This is the twentieth 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 the 4-time Salesforce Certified Leader of the Raleigh, NC, Women in Technology Group & Salesforce MVP, Lauren Jordan.

Lauren Jordan

What’s your job title? Senior BSA, Red Hat (EFD – For the record, BSA = Business Systems Analyst, right?)

What does that mean you do? I just started on 1.4.16, but I am working on a team to improve the internal user experience as well as work on other internal projects.  (EFD – Ooo….a Shiny, Brand New Job, that for the readers benefit you hadn’t even started working at the time this post was written. Oh, hey!  That gives me an idea for another blog series…sorry, I’m not telling anything more about that idea now. Give me a couple of months to get those thoughts in order and create the new blog series.)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? I’ve been on the Salesforce platform for 6.5 years.  (EFD – That’s about the same length as my Salesforce lifespan.)

Bacon or sausage?  Can’t I have both? Don’t make me decide.

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  Both – in a perfect world what you know, but its not realistic to think knowing someone doesn’t help 🙂 (EFD – Uhhh…so that’s a “What” or is it a “Who”?  I might be slightly confused here.)

How did our relationship start, and when? I’m pretty sure it was the Success Community, and in the fall of 2014. (EFD – “Pretty sure”?  I guess I really made a great impression on you! {That’s sarcasm, in case you couldn’t tell}  Seriously, I’m not sure I really remember either!  We are both pretty active on Twitter and in the Success Community, but I think the first time I met you in person might have been at Dreamforce 2015! )

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I have my cosmetologist license – Yes I used to do hair and nails.  I did say that in a community feed one day – not sure who picked up on it though. (EFD – I wonder if you can do anything with my hair…so my children will realize I still have some left!)

You can find Lauren on Twitter.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Elna Miller

This is the eighteenth 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 the force behind the Salesforce Goodie List, Elna Miller.
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What’s your job title? Customer Success Strategy Senior Manager, Salesforce.

What does that mean you do? I help produce and run a global, interactive, community-integrated webinar extravaganza. I also like to hang out in the Success Community where I serve as a moderator for several groups and share my pet project, the Goodie List. (EFD – I love the Goodie List.  It’s always full of great things! And the Webinar series is loaded with awesomeness too. **Links to the webinar series and a few other “Goodies” are at the bottom of this post. )

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? Since 2009. I started as customer, as an admin/BA for a new implementation, then took a break to move cross country and have a set of twin girls before starting at Salesforce a little over four and a half  years ago. (EFD – Hmm, you took a break to move and have twins, and then you go back to work. I suppose now you work to get a break from the twins??)

Bacon or sausage?  Can’t I have both?  Don’t make me decide!

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  What you know prepares you to impress who you know. (EFD – I knew the who and the what were connected, but I never thought about it that way before.)

How did our relationship start, and when? I believe we met at the first MVP Summit in 2014 and then we were lucky enough to recruit you as a guest host on one of our Premier Adoption webinars. Examples you contributed remain in the webinar presentation to this day! (EFD – I think we met virtually before the MVP Summit in 2014, but it was great to meet you in person at the Summit, and a total blast to help out with the webinar!)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I am not allowed to give blood here in the US because I lived in the UK for more than 6 months during the “mad cow” era. (EFD – Uh…Moo?)

Here’s the scoop on the webinar series and some of Elna’s favorite groups on the Success Community:

New to Salesforce:
Intermediate/Advanced:
*exclusively for Premier customers
Community Groups and Hot Spots:

You can find Elna on Twitter.

I always give my featured community members a chance to review and comment on the blog post before I publish it (Yeah, I’m nice like that!) and in response to my “Twins” comment, here’s what Elna shared, and I can personally relate to that, living in a house with three teen-aged girls! (No offense to women intended at all…and if you are offended, I’m sorry. I’m expressing my opinion, and you are welcome to share yours!)

kids no-kids

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Kelly Bentubo

This is the fifteenth 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 & the 5X Salesforce Certified Leader of the Charlotte (North Carolina) Salesforce User Group, Kelly Bentubo.

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What’s your job title? Salesforce Administrator, BlackArch Partners.

What does that mean you do? Anything and everything you’d expect from an Admin and Declarative Developer! I handle data imports, optimize page layouts, marketing messaging, and increasing efficiency through formulas and process builder automation. I’m currently working through some Visualforce enhancements and testing some Apex triggers (thank you Trailhead!) (EFD – Another shoutout to Trailhead! If you didn’t see my post introducing Chris Duarte, check it out. She’s the reason Trailhead is so awesome!)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? I’ve been a Salesforce Administrator since 2007. (EFD – That just about puts you at the “mid-life” crisis time period…in Salesforce Years.  Just kidding!  With the speed at which Salesforce evolves, there isn’t time for a mid-life crisis!)

Bacon or sausage?  Can’t I have both?  Don’t make me decide!

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  Although I think it’s important to build credibility with what you know, I think Salesforce is ever so quickly changing and it’s even more important to share who you know.  I think all of us struggle to keep up with the latest and greatest, often times struggling to fit in cert maintenance at the final hour!  It’s a great feeling to be able to connect resources in our community when someone asks a question on a product/service that you’ve never used before.  I’ve learned a lot through those connections and it’s led me to innovation that I may not have thought up without that initial connection trigger! (EFD – Connection trigger – love that expression. I wonder how many connection triggers will be written as a result of this post.)

How did our relationship start, and when? I first connected with Eric in Success Community years ago, did a DF13 session together on Community and then dropped some sic beats during the Awesome People Party and AppBash during DF14! (EFD – I think we first got connected as a result of us both leading user groups, and I’m thinking we first met in person at a User Group Leader function at DF11.  What’s the Awesome People Party?  Check out the full, hour-long, recording here.  If you are really only interested in the “sic beats” from the legendary group App X Chainz, that’s here.

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I love ALL types of crafting.  Drawing, painting, sculpture, scrapbooking, wood burning…you name it, I’ve probably tried it or am interested in trying it!  I’ve taken classes on cake decorating and Chinese calligraphy.  I just bought supplies to make resin jewelry and am hoping to take a glass blowing class next!. (EFD – I’m married to a “crafter” who makes, or has made Christmas ornaments; wire-wrapped jewelry, decorated sugar cookies, and I’m sure there’s more that I’m forgetting!  I’d love to see some blown glass once you’ve made some. )

You can find Kelly on Twitter, and be sure to take a look at Kelly’s blog: Geeking Out.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Tami Esling

This is the fourteenth 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 Tami Esling.

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What’s your job title? Senior Salesforce Consultant, SaaS Consulting Group.

What does that mean you do? I perform a variety of tasks from directing clients and colleagues towards Salesforce education (Trailhead is a must!) to full Salesforce implementations.  I receive so much joy in watching others grow and learn or completing an implementation that makes my client’s life easier.  There is never an end to learning or helping others in the Salesforce world!. (EFD – Trailhead rocks! If you didn’t see my post introducing Chris Duarte, check it out. She’s the reason Trailhead is so awesome!)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? Five years. (EFD – That’s a decent amount of time…in Salesforce Years!)

Bacon or sausage?  Its bacon or nothing!

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  I think it’s a bit of both.  Connections are so important, but I also think you have to have the knowledge (or a strong desire to learn) to best help others and meet your goals. (EFD – I love how you worded that: you have to have the knowledge…to best help other and meet your goals. Very interesting that you put helping others ahead of meeting your goals!)

How did our relationship start, and when? If you’re on the Salesforce Community, then you probably “know” Eric Dreshfield.  That is how it all began.  Then I had the privilege to meet you in person at the MVP Summit in 2015. (EFD –                         <- see that? You rendered me speechless. It was truly my honor and privilege to meet you…and our online relationship started when I joined the Certification study group you facilitated. I must admit, I wasn’t the best student. I didn’t keep up with the homework, and in the end, that’s probably part of why I’m still “un-certified” today.)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I have skydived and plan to take another jump in 2016. (EFD – I’ve jumped out of plenty of airplanes…but they were all sitting on the ground when I did it. I’m guessing you did it at somewhere near 10,000 feet!)

You can find Tami on Twitter.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Ryan Headley

This is the twelfth 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 musician, Ryan Headley.

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What’s your job title? Senior IT Consultant, Radial Web, Inc.

What does that mean you do? Radial Web does custom Salesforce development, implementations and integrations. My job is mainly all things development, but there are times when I do admin stuff as well. (EFD – So you start with customer requirements, do your magic and build a solution that meets their needs. Smoke & mirrors, that’s your secret, isn’t it?)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? Just over 2 years. (EFD – Wow, dude! Only two years in the ecosystem and you’re already an MVP and you have been on stage at Dreamforce? What’s left to do? I know…plenty, right?)

Bacon or sausage?  Can’t I have both? Don’t make me decide!

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  Who. My old boss used to say: I don’t know, but I know YOU know. That’s all I need to know. (EFD – But what do you do if you don’t know anyone who knows what you need to know, you know? I know! Enter the Salesforce Success Community! There’s ALWAYS someone there in the know!)

How did our relationship start, and when? I think we first started following each other on Twitter sometime during early 2014. Then we met in person at the Community Keynote at Dreamforce 2014. (EFD – Ah yes, loved Erica Kuhl’s state of the community address.)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I travelled the country as a young child while my parents toured in a bluegrass gospel band called The Pathfinders (EFD – That’s cool! So your musical abilities came naturally!)

You can find Ryan on Twitter and be sure to check out his blog: Sudo Vi.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Taylor Grimes

This is the tenth 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 Taylor Grimes.

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What’s your job title? Salesforce Consultant, Cheshire Impact

What does that mean you do?  I help clients engineer the lead to revenue lifecycle through Salesforce architecture and Marketing Automation enablement.  I help with marketing and sales processes during Salesforce implementations, managed services and custom projects tackling unique pain points. (EFD – I have some unique pain points, but that might just be from being old!)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? Five years. (EFD – So in ‘Salesforce years’ you are a relative rookie, but have seen some incredible improvements!)

Bacon or sausage?  Can’t I have both? Don’t make me decide!

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  Who you know, every leg up I’ve gotten throughout my career in Salesforce is because someone smarter than me took the time to explain an answer which then became knowledge I helped share too. It’s a grassroots community empowering everyone who has a desire to learn 🙂 (EFD – Ahhh…the community in action. That’s awesome!)

How did our relationship start, and when? I started following you when I read your blog on becoming an MVP.  (EFD – so that would have been in April, 2013. I found out that I became an MVP the day after my birthday. What a present, huh? Oh…and in case anyone missed that blog, here it is!

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I went to a college prep boarding school for athletes in Faribault, MN right outside the Twin Cities.  Shattuck St. Mary’s focused on building a competitive environment for nurturing student athletes.  Alumnus include the great Marlon Brando, Sydney Crosby from the Penguins, Johnny Toews of the Blackhawks, Derek Stephan of the NY Rangers, or the countless AMAZING women on Team USA and many more. (If the Shattuck St. Mary’s google alerts find this article, my apologies for those left out who are worthy of a shout out 😉 ).  I used to think the highlight of my life would be saying I went to high school with the best of the best as I humbly cheer on my friends while they made it to Olympic levels, until I found my Salesforce network.  Now I’m a part of a group so powerful and exciting that I don’t have to just look back fondly at my time in high school, I’m excited for my future and what I can do for Women in Technology paving my own trail.  It may not be as glorious as a Gold Medal or Stanley Cup, but for me the growth in my career with Salesforce is more than I could have ever hoped for as a girl from Nebraska with a dream to find my calling. (EFD – There are some people who will be more impressed at what this girl from Nebraska has done, compared to winning an Olympic Gold Medal or the Stanley Cup….I’m one of those people.)

You can find Taylor on Twitter.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Lori Witzel

This is the ninth 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, Lori Witzel.

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What’s your job title? Senior Product Marketing Manager, Spanning Cloud Apps.
What does that mean you do?  I listen to and learn from Admins so we build SaaS data protection products that delight them, and I do educational outreach on SaaS data protection. (EFD – I love that statement…not just listen to, but also learn from…and then delight them!)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? I’ve been a customer of Salesforce.com since 2005, a Salesforce admin from 2011-2014, and have worked for AppExchange ISV partners for more than 7 years.  (EFD – So what’s more enjoyable – being a customer or working for an ISV partner?  That’s a rhetorical question…you really don’t need to answer it!)

Bacon or sausage? Is this a trick question? (Bacon, of course!)

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  It’s all about who you know. Everything I’ve learned, I’ve learned with and from other people. I may only know that person from what they wrote, but there’s still a person behind the “what I know.”  (EFD – And isn’t it a blast when you meet those people in real life?)

How did our relationship start, and when? We e-met through the Salesforce Success Community in 2014, when I was new to Spanning and was preparing myself for Dreamforce. I saw the Newbie Breakfast Group in my Chatter feed, and the #bacon theme, and it was the start of a beautiful friendship.  (EFD – They say that relationships started over pork products are the relationships that last a lifetime!  –  OK…I just made that up, but it sure sounds good, right?)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I was in Richard Linklaters’s first movie, “Slacker” (he went on to direct “School of Rock” among other things), and I play a very disturbed woman in a coffee shop about halfway through the movie. (EFD – That might explain a few things…)

You can find Lori on Twitter.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Bonny Hinners

This is the seventh 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 Bonny Hinners, the leader of the Bay Area Salesforce Nonprofit User Group.

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What’s your job title? Independent Consultant.  (EFD – So how’s that relationship with your boss?)

What does that mean you do?  I work with nonprofits and for-profits to build out custom solutions in Salesforce that are unique to their business needs from clicks to code, primarily groups that want a local resource here in the San Francisco Bay Area.  I am fortunate to have worked on some terrific projects including a resource management application with a children’s museum and a clienteling solution with a for-profit service provider.   (EFD – All that, and you also lead the Bay Area Nonprofit User Group…kudos to you!)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? Since 2004, that’s when I got my very first developer org and started learning about the capabilities.  I have continued using it for creating and testing customized business solutions.  Everyone should have a free developer org to explore new features and to try out new customizations and code.  (EFD – 2004, that would have been the 2nd year for Dreamforce, if I’m not mistaken.)

Bacon or sausage? Can’t I have both? Don’t make me decide.

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  Who you know–it’s all about the users and how well you know them. You have to understand users’ needs to provide them with the best solutions.  You also have to know the Salesforce community and how to turn to them for inspiration and feedback.  The community can really help you to learn new skills so you can provide better solutions for the end users.  (EFD – Users, users, users….why is it always all about the users? It’s NOT!  It’s all about the community!)

How did our relationship start, and when?  I had the pleasure of meeting you shortly after you became an MVP and was delighted to work with you on a Dreamforce 2013 session! That session was all about encouraging administrators to join their local user groups and showing them how to make good use of the Success Community and Power of Us Hub.  (EFD – So that would have been Spring, 2013, and my very first time presenting at Dreamforce was that session with you!)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I have a degree in Computer Science and I do trapeze! (EFD – Computer Science? That’s not too surprising, but trapeze? Do you mean swinging and flying high above the ground?)

You can find Bonny on Twitter, and please read her blog too!

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Melissa VanDyke

This is the sixth 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 Melissa VanDyke, the creator of the Admin to Admin Academy and the host of the Admin to Admin Academy Video Podcast.

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What’s your job title? Manager, Salesforce.  (EFD – So you manage a team of Sales people?)  MVD: No! I manage a team of Awesome Salesforce Admins at Orbitz Worldwide, the online travel agency.

What does that mean you do?   Lead Salesforce solution architect for the Global Hotel Strategy instance of Salesforce (~300 users); Management responsibilities for the Salesforce team (2 direct reports on my team); I oversee the Hotel Strategy Salesforce deliverables for all stakeholders; Full end-to-end project management responsibilities for all SFDC projects. From requirement gathering, documentation and development to implementation, training and roll-out/change management.

(EFD – Uh, wow. That’s a lot. How do you have time for anything else, like your Admin to Admin Academy and podcast?)  MVD: I use all of my free time thinking about ways to bring value to the community and creating content. I listen to every podcast I can find that helps empower me, so I stop being my own worst enemy (for example, I try not to say “I am too busy” and instead think about ways to find the time — like how I can watch 1 hour less of TV and write a post instead! LOL!). If interested in this type of thing, check out The Life Coach School Podcast by Brooke Castillo she is definitely one of my major heroes (along with Tony Robbins and Stephen R. Covey of course :))!!

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? 5 years.  (EFD – That’s a pretty good amount of time, in Salesforce years.)  MVD- I actually started with Microsoft Dynamics, so it is technically 8 years’ experience of leveraging CRM as a platform for process improvement projects.

Bacon or sausage? It’s bacon, or nothing..

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  It’s what you know about who you know. Listening and knowing your audience so you can learn from them and help them as necessary  (EFD – Listening?  What?  Oh right, we have 2 ears and only one mouth, so we should listen twice a much as we talk, right?)  MVD– Yes! And the key is to ask awesome questions that make people feel comfortable with you, making it clear that you are there to help them and solve their process pain!

How did our relationship start, and when? Midwest Dreamin’ 2014!!!  (EFD – Midwest Dreamin’?  What’s that?  😉  I know a thing or two about Midwest Dreamin’. If you don’t, check it out! It’s coming back to Chicago this summer!)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I was almost an amateur poker player. (EFD – Almost? Did you lose a bet and have to take a career path that led you to Salesforce instead?) MVD– Ha! I guess I was technically an amateur poker player because I had been playing tournaments and cash games in all of my free time for about eight years, then five years ago I seriously considered packing up and moving to Vegas to pursue my passion full time! In the end I decided instead to try and level up my career, knowing that if that did not work out I could fall back on the poker dream (and I can always retire early to try my hand at becoming a poker pro!). Luckily I found Saleforce shortly after, and have never looked back 🙂 I do miss playing poker tremendously, but now I spend all my free time creating content for the blog and podcast!!

And now for the extra bonus question – Tell me about Admin to Admin Academy and your podcast…what’s it all about and motivated you to start it?  I first started my blog in February 2015. It was something I had been dreaming about for at least 2 years. (EFD – Dreaming about a blog…hmmm.  Tell me more!)  I would talk about it, plan it and think about what I wanted to write.  (EFD – #Teaser  Sorry, readers…you’ll have to watch for another post coming soon that goes into all the details behind Admin to Admin Academy!  I promise, it’s a great story. That’s why I’m going to make it a separate post!)

You can find Melissa on Twitter and be sure to check out her site.

I’m the (Kevin) Bacon of the Salesforce Community – Introducing Steve Molis

This is the fifth 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…since it seems very appropriate for Dreamforce week, I introduce Mr. Answers, SteveMoForce, the one and only, Steve Molis.

                               

What’s your job title? Applications Developer.  (EFD – Where’s the word “Answers” or “Salesforce”?)

What does that mean you do?  I’m your basic IT/MIS Database Admin/Analyst/Developer who “inherited” SFDC back when we first adopted it in 2003.  Prior to that I was basically doing everything I am now, but in Lotus Domino instead of the Force.com Platform.   (EFD – Lotus what?  Didn’t they make something called 1-2-3?)

How long have you been involved with Salesforce.com (as a customer and/or an employee)? I’ve been in the Salesforce ecosystem since September 4, 2003.  (EFD – Come on, Steve, can’t you give me the exact millisecond?)

Bacon or sausage? BACON!!!!! (Said in Benny from LEGO Movie “Spaceship!!” voice)

What’s more important: Who you know, or what you know?  What you know…self-reliance can sometimes be the most valuable tool! No matter the circumstance, one’s brain will always be with them while the “who’s” might not always be available at the drop of a hat.  (EFD – Wait, you mean YOU might not always be out there answering questions in the Salesforce Community?  NOOOOO!!!!  Say it ain’t so!)

How did our relationship start, and when? I’m a gentleman, I never kiss and tell.  (EFD – Ok, Steve.  I’m almost a gentleman, so I might spill the beans.  Too bad I don’t really remember!  I know you helped me out with some answers when I was brand new on Salesforce, and sharing a room with you at Dreamforce 2014 was a blast. Oops…that’s how rumors get started.)

And now the bonus question – What’s one fact about you that few people know, that will surprise me and my blog readers? I was a stand-up comic. (EFD – WAS???  You still are.  But back then, did you have your own “Safe Habbah” statement for explicit language?)

You can find Steve on Twitter.