Minimum Viable Product?*

Picture the scene, it was an average Tuesday morning on the last day of February. I was up slightly earlier than normal as I was traveling to our Birmingham office.

I was nearly ready to kiss my still sleeping husband goodbye and leave the house when I picked up my phone and quickly scanned my notifications.

What's that? Received at 3am from one Holly Firestone with a subject line of Congratulations!
My finger has never moved so fast, open open open email now.

Ohhhh Myyyyy..... cue a rather loud scream as I ran into the bedroom to tell my now very alarmed husband that I wasn't being murdered but was instead an MVP.

A Salesforce MVP. A most valuable professional in the Salesforce ecosystem. Me.

Mind blown.

I did what I later found out several of my fellow Winter 17 class did, which was to reply to check that Holly wasn't channelling Warren Beatty in opening the wrong envelope... I then had 9 hours before the award was made public.
How would I last that time without being sectioned as a mad grinning woman? I had a day full of meetings and an interview to conduct, no one was going to believe that I found any of these tasks that joyous. How would I keep from dancing a jig or breaking out in a stupid smile? I managed the former but failed terribly at the latter.

4pm (GMT) eventually came around and I was still in a meeting but my watch started to vibrate, telling me that the news was public and so as I jumped into a taxi back to the station, I grabbed my phone and triple checked that it was real, I was not going to have to hand back the award, I was indeed publicly and officially named as one of the 19 new MVPs.

I can't express how much this means to me.

I am of course immensely proud of my work co-leading the Women in Tech group. As have I been overwhelmed by the audience responses to my presentations at both London's Callings, at London World Tour, Surf Force, various use Groups, and of course my two Dreamforce sessions. Each and every person who has thanked me and contacted me to say that​ I have helped them has made my heart soar and has made the required preparation and mandatory nerves worthwhile 100 times over. My journey from 'brave billy no mates' walking into my first user group in 2014, to someone who tries to be on the look out for any UG virgins to show them that they have come to the right place, is about returning the favour, I love meeting the first timers and giving them a friendly welcome. I also take great pride when someone says that they have read a blog of mine on training, or on presentation skills, it makes me want to write another.

Yet still I am bowled over to find that any of this has been recognised in this way. I love our community, I look forward to every user group and event. I take so much away from each interaction, whether it is with someone I met at my first UG, or someone I met that evening. I am proud when people seek me out with their questions and even more proud when I know the answers! That all this makes me worthy of the title 'MVP' is very special.

Thank you to everyone who has congratulated me and to my now fellow MVPs who have welcomed me.

But most importantly, THANK YOU to everyone in the community who has created this amazing place that we can join and immediately feel supported, and encouraged to be the best possible version of ourselves.

*and yes, I was asked by a colleague whether it meant minimum viable product 🤔🙄


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