1) What was your first job? In 1992, I had my work experience in BHS doing store administration. Later, after work experience at a solicitor’s office, I ended up getting a job there as an administrator, and continued in that career in Tilbury City (Interserve FM) in 1998.
2) What positives do you see that have come out of the COVID pandemic? Because of the pandemic, I had to look for a new job and wanted to get back into IT after a 15-year gap. A friend showed me Salesforce – he threw me into the deep end and left me to swim in this big ocean. I have to say a big thank you to Trailhead and the Trailblazer Community for helping and mentoring me to move forward.
3) What was your biggest challenge when training into Salesforce and how did you overcome it? My biggest challenge was what to do and how to do it. Likening it to swimming in an ocean, I was diverted many times to do something new. To overcome it, I had to tell myself to keep my mind focused on what I want to achieve, have discipline studying as if I was going to work, and find myself a mentor to guide me when I was struggling. That’s why I am always happy to help new starters.
4) What advice would you give to other individuals starting out in Salesforce? I have a lot of key points for people to follow, for example:
5) Are there any good Salesforce resources (websites, groups, meetups etc) that you would recommend? Salesforce Trailhead, Trailblazer Community Groups, Apex Hours, Salesforce YouTube channels, Admin Focus on Force Q&A, 1000Projects.org and SalesforceBen. You can also join my SalesforceWP groups (Woman Power / Work Power) and connect with me on my socials for more tips.
6) How do you use Salesforce in your job today? I use Salesforce’s many clouds daily to fulfil client requirements whilst working for Fluido, a prestigious Salesforce partner. I also use PLC & Trailhead for learning purposes to update my skills as per requirements and provide demos and solutions to stakeholders and community members.
7) Any advice you can give for people starting out in Salesforce? The advice I always give is “Slow and steady wins the race” and “Be consistent”. Be yourself and be helpful but first focus on your key skills improvements. Empower the community - that’s why I am also known as M.A.D. (Make A Difference).
8) What’s the coolest thing you’ve ever seen Salesforce used for? There are so many things! Slack, Education Cloud and now the Architect community, not forgetting Non Profit Cloud for all the community and of course, Trailblazer.
9) What have you learned through attending Salesforce community events? In very simple terms what I am today - “Application Architect Certified” – this is all thanks to community events, Trailhead and through Trailblazers support. I learned to be confident and a great mentor to other like-minded individuals. My tip is: always be ready to ask questions.
10) What do you think makes a great Salesforce Professional? You have to believe in yourself and be passionate about what you’re doing. Always be ready to learn and implement, accept challenges and complete them. You also need to be a problem solver, a good communicator and use your creativity.
11) What do you wish was better about Salesforce? You need directions when you are starting up as there are so many routes to choose! It would be very helpful to build a structural roadmap of features and support to go with. For people like me, who didn’t purchase courses and only learned through Trailhead and Trail Mixes, I feel we should be recognised and maybe count as a “Trailblazer of today”, get swags and acknowledgement etc. Salesforce could have a starter pack on their home page to facilitate this.
12) Any predictions in relation to the further evolution of Salesforce as a platform? Salesforce evolves every single day, and the way the lightning cloud components and Flows are improving make it simpler for non-coders. It helps to better the performance of the platform and to generate revenue for business and individual growth.
13) What could Salesforce recruiters do better? I feel you have lots of opportunities for the Young Crowd or Mum Returners, but what about people like me who changed their career? They need to look at the opportunities in the mid-age range. It’s also very important to encourage newcomers to join the Trailblazer community. They need to build strong and trustworthy relationships between recruiters and candidates and understand the job role and requirements correctly, not only look for the buzz words in the CV.
14) What tasks drive you mad? I am a perfectionist even when it comes to myself so it drives me mad if I start something and can’t complete it in the time I set for myself – I feel like it’s not up to my standards. I know there are ways to achieve the same goals with more automation and updated tools, but when I don’t get any support, it irritates me.
15) What positives do you see that have come out of the COVID pandemic? Personally, I gained more confidence, built my network and truly realised how much I value myself. I have high observing power to learn from people around me.
Globally, the people in the UK seemed always busy and running around before the pandemic. Then COVID happened and I’ve seen people open to others and willing to help other people from any religion, culture or background. This is a great change! I volunteered and supported the Indians in London Facebook Community Group (regarding Food & Mental support calls) and that gave me a privilege to connect people together in different ways.
16) If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be? I am a city woman and I love London so I will always remain living here, but I’m also known as a traveller – I would love to spend one year backpacking and travelling the world and see as many countries as possible. So far I’ve been to 28 countries out of the 195 countries.
17) What tech content do you consume/follow/listen to? LinkedIn, Twitter & YouTube are my daily go-tos.
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