fallbackcg

Why Company Culture Matter

By Phil Walton

 

I have been lucky to work in some pretty awful jobs..! 

Some interesting jobs…

Some unusual jobs…

Lucky, because I have survived them, moved on from them, and learned from them.

 

The Tough Lessons

At 18 I left home, I worked in the fields of Norfolk, England, picking fruit, grading veg, and packing trucks. It was physically tough, but I worked with people I liked, in the fresh air and the sun.

Also, I once took a job in Canada – often working 100 hour weeks – for minimal wages. But I did it for a friend, and had great fun travelling. i.e. the culture was right.

For my first entrepreneurial business, I converted an old Mill into 20 arts and music studios in Manchester, England. I did my 8 hour day at my paid job, then travelled 30 minutes to work evenings and weekends labouring – as I had no cash to pay someone else to do it…

 

What’s my point?

Sometimes we don’t get to choose what job we do.

When you need some income you take whatever job you can get. But thankfully many of us in this Salesforce Community are in a better position. We are building skills and experience, in a growing and in-demand marketplace. So we can be more choosy about where we work, who we work for, and what they stand for. 

Let’s be honest here, we often work in sandboxes but this isn’t always playtime. We still do challenging jobs, sometimes have to caffeine our way through tough tasks and handhold clients though long go-live events. But there is (hopefully) a big difference between doing this in a safe and friendly environment, where your colleagues appreciate your hard work and celebrate your successes – rather than somewhere you feel undervalued and unloved. 

 

What do Cloud Galacticos stand for? 

A couple of years back we got together and did an exercise, where everyone listed characteristics of Cloud Galacticos, and the characteristics they wanted to avoid. We then looked at similarities and trends, and found a set of beliefs/values/ideals that seemed core to us all. With a bit of clever organising we summarised it as :

 

“H-E-R-O-E-S”

Honesty

Expertise

Respectfulness

Ownership

Enjoyment

Salesforce

Cloud Galacticos Christmas Meal 2021

I am proud of what we have achieved at Cloud Galacticos so far. We know we can do more. And I know the growing team will lead this as much as I will!

 

ABOUT CLOUD GALACTICOS

Cloud Galacticos is a  Salesforce Gold Consulting Partner with an all-star team. We are user and developer group leaders, bloggers, MVPs and all round Salesforce nerds. Our Salesforce consultancy has people all over the UK including Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Sheffield, and London. If you are looking for a Salesforce partner with experience who can help you make the most of your org, why not give us a call?

fallbackcg

Phil Walton, CEO – Meet the Galacticos

In our Meet the Galacticos series so far this year, we’ve met project managers, COOs, Senior Salesforce Consultants, and Developers. And as 2020 draws to a close, we meet the man behind the magic at Cloud Galacticos, our CEO, Phil Walton. I caught up with Phil via email to find out more about him and his experiences.

 

Phil Walton, CEO

Hi Phil, thanks for finding a few minutes in your busy schedule to help people learn a bit more about you. Can you give us a bit of background about yourself and your history with Salesforce?

I started using Salesforce back in 2004. It was simple back then. There were help files and a 250 page ‘Salesforce for Dummies’ book which covered EVERYTHING! So I see myself as rather fortunate, that I got to experience Salesforce early, and learn in steps as Salesforce grew. 

After attending Cloudforce events and User Group events in London, I kept asking why there weren’t similar events happening elsewhere in the UK. One day someone called my bluff and said I should set one up in my home city of Manchester, so I did. I also spent a lot of time on the Answers forum, working with Appexchange, writing my Salesforce blog, and because of this was first awarded as Salesforce MVP in Christmas 2013. I am now in the MVP Hall of Fame as ‘MVP for life’.

 

Cloud Galacticos at Salesforce World Tour London 2019

What made you decide to set up Cloud Galacticos?

I had been a freelance Salesforce Consultant since 2005, so the company has been going since then. But with a few rebrands and updates, we re-launched as Cloud Galacticos in 2017. I wanted a brand that reflected the high skillset of the team. The term ‘Galacticos’ can be used as superstar, or in the football/rugby world as an exceptionally skilled and celebrated player. A bit over the top, but it made a point. 

It was also a great chance to work together with like-minded people. When you have a small team like this, you can work a lot faster, and smoother, and in a friendly and respectful environment.

 

You’ve worked on a lot of Salesforce projects through the years, can you tell us about some of your favourite or memorable ones?

I have lost count of the hundreds of Orgs I have looked at and worked upon, the number of Clients, Users, and industries. There’s been so many great people and experiences. But I feel you only learn from the difficult situations – the easy wins are a bonus, but don’t help you to grow. I look back at some global rollouts where a year of work all hinged on a go-live in an evening/weekend. Where the deadline was tight but we all piled in to make it happen. Or where a mis-communication could nearly have ruined a project and a working relationship. These things happen in business! But it is how you react to a potential issue that marks you out. And having an experienced team that has battled through the tough times, makes us ready and prepared for whatever lies ahead.

 

Phil at Punta Dreamin

Looks like you’ve done a lot of travelling and have been to a few Salesforce events around the world, can you tell us some of your highlights?

Yes, I have been very lucky to speak at Salesforce events on five continents in the last few years. Some of the team went to India Dreamin in 2018 and 2019. It was a fantastic experience to travel with friends and colleagues, meet people in person that we had ‘e-met’ on social media and Trailblazer Communities, and spend time with some of our extended team. I travelled to Uruguay and Argentina for Punta Dreamin in 2018, my first trip to South America. Everyone was so welcoming, and the steaks and red wine were amazing.

Closer to home, I am looking forward to the chance in 2021 to get back to in-person meetings with the local Salesforce Communities. You can’t beat them!

 

Aside from Salesforce and running Cloud Galacticos, what else do you enjoy doing?

Normally I enjoy running. When the first lockdown happened, it didn’t feel enjoyable anymore, so I tried weight training. I am not sure if it will last, but I have already had to buy new t-shirts to fit! 

I enjoy spending time with my family (my wife and two young sons). There is always something going on. Last month on a bike ride we ‘discovered’ the remains of a 5th century Saxon defensive fortification.

 

Cloud Galacticos Christmas Zoom 2020

What tips would you have in working with clients remotely, or working remotely in general?

The ‘new norm’ has been just ‘norm’ to me and most of Cloud Galacticos for the past 10 years. I think the key is communication. You don’t get those visual signs that you get from being sat next to someone in an office – verbalise them. If you need something, be prepared to ask. When you have done something amazing, be prepared to tell people. If you are unavailable, feel free to show a notification. Reinvent the water-cooler/coffee break moments. 

While I believe 90% remote is great, 100% is not so great. We all need that in-person catch up, with clients, colleagues, friends, and family. For those hospitality businesses that can survive Covid, I think they will be very busy when the coast is clear and we can all meet in person. See you at the party! 

 

ABOUT CLOUD GALACTICOS

Cloud Galacticos is a Salesforce Consulting Partner with an all-star team. We are user and developer group leaders, bloggers, MVPs and all round Salesforce nerds. We have people all over the UK including Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Sheffield and London. If you are looking for a Salesforce partner with experience who can help you make the most of your org, why not give us a call?

fallbackcg

Cloud Galacticos 2020 Highlights

There’s no denying that 2020 has been a strange and difficult year for many people. So as this year comes to a close, the team at Cloud Galacticos tell us their highlights, and what they’ve been grateful for this year. Why not join in the conversation on Twitter using #SalesforceGratitude?

 

Val Southern, Senior Salesforce Consultant

“My first work related highlight would be passing both the Salesforce Platform Developer I (PDI), and the Sharing and Visibility Designer certifications on the first attempt. It felt particularly good to have studied successfully to a structured plan. I did not leave school with great results, so it probably was something of a ‘see if I can do it for myself’ situation. It was a great confidence booster!

Finishing the Cloud Nine implementation was another highlight this year. I had to overcome some significant challenges and this project was a learning process for me. Not my first implementation by far but it was different from any other. I really enjoyed working with the Cloud Nine team and took away a lot of satisfaction from helping them. I also enjoyed mentoring Katie in the first few weeks of working at Cloud Nine.

On a personal note, I’m grateful for witnessing my partner’s success in her new writing career. For most of 2020, Jen has been going through the (surprisingly complex) process of getting her new book series ready to be published. I’ve been lucky enough to have done some beta-reading, and loved brainstorming funny ideas for story ideas and illustrations. I could not be prouder!”

 

SalesforceGratitude Phil Walton

Phil’s #SalesforceGratitude

Phil Walton, CEO

“I think my highlight of 2020 is seeing how adaptable we all are. It is easy to get used to the status quo (not the band!). Big changes or events can really shake things up and enforce change. When life throws you lemons, make lemonade!

Also, it wasn’t a choice to stay in the house for months on end, but I’ve been grateful for the chance to spend more time with my family. In the last couple of years I have spoken at Salesforce events on five continents. This year I am not sure I have gone 5 miles away from my house.

I have also enjoyed reading books. I got out of the habit, but this year have read a mix of fiction (including some 1970’s science fiction that I found in a skip!?), and non-fiction (including Paul’s book, Ines’ book, The Barcelona Way, Range, Factfulness).”

 

Emma with one of her paintings

Emma with one of her paintings

Emma Frost, Project Manager

“I’m grateful for the fact that we now have a second person, Pippa, to work on project management. It has been great to share the workload with her. Also having someone else to bounce ideas off and discuss what we can do to improve our project management offering.

This year I managed to launch a new website for my landscape painting. With opportunities for art fairs and exhibitions completely at a stand still, I knew it was time to sort out my online offering in order to continue selling work and reach new audiences. It was a lot of work and I’m very proud of the final result.

Finally, I’ve managed to give out over 100 bikes through my charity, Bikes in Need. During lockdown I have given pool bikes to be used by asylum seekers staying in a hotel on the outskirts of York. This took me over the magic 100 which has been a personal goal since I started.”

 

Rhi McCorkindale, Lead Developer

“My work-related highlights for 2020 would be getting the Salesforce Certified Service Cloud (SP20), and Salesforce Certified Nonprofit Cloud Consultant (SP20) Certification. These were areas that I have done a lot of work in but so far hadn’t taken any certifications for, so it is nice to be able to back up my experience with the relevant certifications. I hope to make some inroads into the Integration Architecture Designer Certification too this year as part of the journey towards becoming a Certified Systems Architect.

Outside work, it would be moving house. We were lucky enough to move just before the first lockdown happened. The new house has much more space for myself and my partner. We both work from home full time, along with my partner’s children who also spent half the time in lockdown here. With the extra time on our hands, we were able to do a lot of work renovating the house and garden. Looking forward to being able to have visitors in 2021!”

 

Learning Salesforce Development with Apex by Paul Battisson

Paul’s first book, ‘Learning Salesforce Development with Apex’

Paul Battisson, COO

“I think my main highlight for 2020 has been getting my first two books published!

I’ve always had an itch to write a book, but this year thanks to lots of time indoors and a lack of travel options I managed to get not one but two books on Apex programming written. It has been great to have the physical copies of the books in my hand and to finally share some of the practices and tips I have learned over the past 12 odd years with the rest of the Salesforce Ohana.”

 

Nkosi Ncube, Developer

“Amazingly, I managed to run a total of 200 miles during the first lockdown with my wife. We’ve been married 18 years and never thought this day would come. And a work highlight would be having two go-lives on projects!”

 

Sales Cloud Consultant Certification Luke Menzfeld

Luke’s Sales Cloud Consultant Certification

Luke Menzfeld, Salesforce Consultant

“ It has been a turbulent year for all with a very real requirement to adapt to day-to-day life in many different ways. My ‘highlights’ would be surviving and thriving in lockdown, changing jobs/starting at Cloud Galactico, hosting a number of events for the Newcastle User Group, mastering domestic project management (a.k.a home improvements), lawn management and gaining three Salesforce certifications.”

 

About Cloud Galacticos

Cloud Galacticos is a Salesforce Consulting Partner with an all-star team. We are user and developer group leaders, bloggers, MVPs and all round Salesforce nerds. We have people all over the UK including Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Sheffield and London. If you are looking for a Salesforce partner with experience who can help you make the most of your org, why not give us a call?

fallbackcg

Luke Menzfeld, Salesforce Consultant – Meet the Galacticos

Continuing in our series in which you get to meet and learn more about the Cloud Galacticos team, say ‘hello’ to Luke Menzfeld, one of our newest team members, and a Salesforce Consultant. I caught up with Luke via email to find out more about him and his experiences.

 

Luke Menzfeld, Salesforce Consultant

Hi Luke, thanks for finding a few minutes to help people learn a bit more about you. Can you give us a bit of background about yourself and your history with Salesforce?

I’m a self-certified super-fan of the Salesforce platform with a keen interest in technology, business and digital innovation. I was born and raised in the East Midlands before moving to the North East to attend university many years ago. My working career prior to joining Cloud Galacticos has taken me worldwide and allowed me to work in the USA, Paris and Norway in the private sector of both the automotive and oil & gas industries. 

I was first introduced to Salesforce in 2007. I worked briefly as an end user in the USA before working full time with the platform in 2017. I’m also a co-lead of the Newcastle Community Group. I’m keen to spread awareness, encouragement and learning potential to my local community and beyond!

 

Salesforce TrailheaDX Global Gathering August 2020

What’s your story behind meeting Phil and joining the Cloud Galacticos team?

I first met Phil as part of a shared North England Community Group Event that we were planning for TrailheaDX. Over subsequent meetings I also got to know Paul, and was impressed with the work and engagement coming from the Cloud Galacticos pair/team. Those initial meets sparked a conversation and it went from there.

 

What will your role be at the company, and what are you looking forward to most?

I’m joining Cloud Galacticos as a Salesforce Consultant.  I will be engaging with clients and delivering projects to make the best of their Salesforce system solutions. I’m most looking forward to the variety of projects that consultancy offers and working with organisations who are looking to create & deliver value with Salesforce.

 

Luke playing rugby for Novocastrians RFC

Aside from Salesforce and working at Cloud Galacticos, what else do you enjoy doing?

I’m a huge fan of Rugby Union and actively play for my local side Novocastrians RFC in Newcastle. This might be a career limiting statement at Cloud Galacticos but I’d argue there’s no better team sport . . ha! I also like to travel, and keep active outdoors.

 

What tips would you have on working remotely during the current Covid-19 situation?

Stay connected to your colleagues, be focused on what you need to achieve and dedicate your energy to one key task at a time. Listen to your body/mind and if you need some time out, get out for some fresh air or take an exercise break.

 

ABOUT CLOUD GALACTICOS

Cloud Galacticos is a Salesforce Consulting Partner with an all-star team. We are user and developer group leaders, bloggers, MVPs and all round Salesforce nerds. We have people all over the UK including Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Sheffield, and London. If you are looking for a Salesforce partner with experience who can help you make the most of your org, why not give us a call?

fallbackcg

Dreamforce 2020: Things We’ll Miss and Things That We Won’t

Dreamforce, for many in the Salesforce ecosystem, is the highlight of their events calendar. Though with the Covid-19 situation affecting people globally, the conference this year will be re-imagined. Say ‘hello’ to Dreamforce To You 2020: ‘instead of everyone coming to Dreamforce, Dreamforce is coming to you — to your kitchen, to your living room, even to your own backyard.’

A few of us at Cloud Galacticos have been lucky enough to attend in previous years. This blog is about what we will miss, and not miss, about Dreamforce…

 

Paul Battisson Presenting at Dreamforce 2018

Paul Battisson, CEO

What I miss about Dreamforce:

The thing I will miss most is speaking and talking to other speakers. I love going to Dreamforce to share the things I have been working on over the past year, best practices I have found to work, as well as push the envelope with some strange and crazy ideas (I have spoken about VR in Salesforce and did the first talk on Machine Learning at a Dreamforce). I will miss learning from people and having these great conversations.

What I won’t miss about Dreamforce:

The flight. As lovely as a 12 hour flight, plus a connecting flight, and lots of time in an airport is, I will not be missing that part. I do like having some uninterrupted reading time, but the meal is never as good as food made nearer ground level.

 

Salesforce Conference in San Francisco

Trailhead at Dreamforce

Neel Meghani, CTO

What I miss about Dreamforce:

I have only done one Dreamforce trip so far. I had heard how big it is but experiencing it for myself it far far exceeded expectations. The biggest thing I miss is the atmosphere itself. The atmosphere can be felt as soon as you arrive in San Francisco. The coming together of so many people with a common interest just gives the whole town a big community feel making you feel at home! Obviously being there presents a big opportunity to learn, gain knowledge and ideas, but most importantly it’s the social side part that I’ll miss.

What I won’t miss about Dreamforce:

The travel, plus the fact it’s all go – full steam ahead as soon as you arrive. You have to ignore the jet lag and just keep going. This all means the sheer exhaustion you feel when you leave lasts a good week after you return. I needed loads of R&R when I got back. That feeling I will not miss. So Dreamforce To You sounds awesome to me!

 

Salesforce Ohana Golden Gate Bridge Walk Dreamforce 2019

Ben Duong, Head of Marketing

What I miss about Dreamforce:

Dreamforce is a unique beast. Bigger and brasher in real life than you can ever imagine – you have to be there to understand. What I will miss about Dreamforce 2020 going virtual this year is being in San Francisco itself. I have been countless times (due to my dad and family living there), but ‘The City’ never fails to amaze. From the skyline (Salesforce Tower joins the Golden Gate Bridge in iconic terms) to the diverse range of cuisines available, to the many cool venues, Dreamforce was made for San Francisco.

What I won’t miss about Dreamforce:

Having to travel over from the UK, with it’s 8 hour time difference, the jet lag is something I won’t miss. Even with the great coffee and sessions on offer, it always takes a few days to adjust. Dreamforce 2020 going virtual may take away the jet lag, but I’d be happy with the disorientation if it meant being back in San Francisco!

 

Baldforce at Dreamforce 2018

Phil Walton, CEO

What I miss about Dreamforce:

There is a real and constant ‘buzz’ at Dreamforce. Maybe it is just the warm weather, jetlag, and strong coffee? But it feels like there is ALWAYS something going on. It’s not just the sessions, the learning, the parties, it is often the bits in between. The conversation in a shared Uber, the chat in a lift, the friend you make whilst lost in one of the venues.

As well as bumping into friends, & colleagues, you always have your eyes peeled for ‘celebrity spotting’. Whether it is ‘Salesforce celebrity’, the VPs, the Community team, your AEs, or if you are lucky, Marc or Parker. But also (queue name dropping, sorry) I had a chance chat with David Blaine (who now follows me on Twitter!?), breakfast with Billy Connelly, and nearly knocked over Iggy Pop. You don’t get that on a Virtual presentation!

What I won’t miss about Dreamforce:

The downside of the great things, is that there is so much you can not possibly see. There are 1,000+ sessions, last time I think I managed to go to one! So I always have regrets about missed opportunities, missed learnings. I guess I will still have that, but I can sleep in my own bed when it is all virtual. 

 

Fleetwood Mac at Dreamforce 2019

ABOUT CLOUD GALACTICOS

Cloud Galacticos is a Salesforce consultancy, and a Salesforce Consulting Partner with an all-star team. We are user and developer group leaders, bloggers, MVPs and all round Salesforce nerds. We have people all over the UK including Manchester, Leeds, York, Sheffield, and London. If you are looking for a Salesforce partner with experience who can help you make the most of your org, why not give us a call?

 

fallbackcg

Team Galacticos Salesforce Event Highlights

Anyone in the Salesforce ecosystem will know, we’re one big ohana. And before the Covid-19 situation affected us all, events and conferences were a big part of what we do (from local user groups and community Dreamin’ events, to large scale World Tours and of course, Dreamforce).

With all Salesforce events for 2020 now being re-imagined, some of the team members at Cloud Galacticos tell us their event highlights from previous years.

 

Neel Meghani CTO – India Dreamin 2018

Neel at India Dreamin

“My second time attending India Dreamin was back in December 2018. Representing Cloud Galacticos was Phil Walton (CEO) and our new (at the time) COO Paul Battisson, along with myself. This was also a very memorable event for me as it was the first time speaking at such an event.

From my experience of Salesforce related events, India Dreamin stands out above and beyond all others. There seems to be much more passion for learning about the platform. The entire two days had the feel of something special happening and that the Salesforce community should take notice!” 

 

 

Paul Battisson, COO – Dreamforce 2014

Paul presenting at Dreamforce

“This was my second Dreamforce, so I had learned a few of the newbie lessons from my first Dreamforce and was much better prepared for the craziness. The reason this is my favourite Dreamforce is that I did my favourite ever talk for the first time – ‘Building Machine Learning Systems With Apex’ with my then colleague Jen Wyher.

Why is this my favourite talk? Firstly, it took a tremendous amount of effort to get the system working. Secondly, this means Jen and I hold the record for being the first people to discuss doing AI/Machine Learning on Salesforce, years before Einstein. We got such great feedback from the talk. It started so many conversations with people that changed how I spent the rest of the event.”

 

Phil Walton, CEO – Punta Dreamin’, Uruguay 2018

Phil at Punta Dreamin

“Salesforce events have taken me around the world! I am proud to say I have spoken at events on five continents, and Punta Dreamin was a great excuse to travel to a whole new continent for me. I had never been to South America, so my trip to Uruguay – via a few days in Buenos Aires, Argentina – was an amazing trip. 

Great food, great wine, and Aldo was a great host. Also I was training for the Manchester marathon at the time, so I running in the heat of Buenos Aires and Punta was amazing. I always say running is a great way to see the sights of a new city.

Phil running in Buenos Aires

I look back on international trips like Uruguay, India, Morocco, USA, and around Europe with fond memories. Hopefully they will be back soon and we’ll meet again!” 

 

Val Southern, Senior Consultant – Salesforce World Tour London 2019

Val at World Tour London

“At Cloud Galacticos, we work remotely so it’s always good when the team gets a chance to meet up at Salesforce events. And for me, one of my annual highlights has been the Salesforce World Tour London in May.

Last year’s conference was great. We held our first ‘Client and Partner Drinks Reception’ the night before. It was at a fabulous rooftop bar near Salesforce’s London office. As one of the  sponsors of the conference, we had a stand which meant our day started at 7am, and didn’t finish till 6pm. But as usual, the day flew by, especially as we had a special guest keeping us company at the stand in the way of Paul Sturgess, Britain’s Tallest Man!

It’s a shame that the event couldn’t happen this year, but fingers crossed for 2021!”

 

Nkosi Ncube, Developer – Mulesoft Connect 2019

Nkosi Ncube at MuleSoft CONNECT 2019

“I have been to a few Salesforce events, the most notable ones being the Salesforce World Tour. Unfortunately due to Covid-19 most events were not to be this year. 

However, I did manage to attend the Mulesoft Connect event in London in October 2019. The main highlight was actually finally meeting a fellow Galacticos, Mike Gill. And of course I can’t forget the swag (very important at events!).

We hope and pray these events will be back soon!”

 

fallbackcg

Cloud Galacticos 2019 Highlights

Being the CEO of a Silver Partner Salesforce Consultancy and managing a UK-wide team of people is no mean feat. So it’s no surprise that Phil Walton, who is also in the Salesforce MVP Hall of Fame, has a rather busy calendar. As we reach the end of another successful year, he reflects back on some of his personal highlights of 2019.

World Tour London and our Client Drinks Reception the night before (May)

Cloud Galacticos at Salesforce London World Tour with paul Sturgess

Team Galacticos with Paul Sturgess at Salesforce World Tour London 2019

 

For most Salesforce-ers Dreamforce is the highlight of the year. But for me, the London World Tour is the big one. OK so we didn’t have Fleetwood Mac or Alicia Keys, but it is a great chance for the UKI and European Salesforce Community to meet up in person.

We had a great day, meeting Clients and Partners old and new at our Gold stand. Plus we were joined by ex-Harlem Globetrotter and Britain’s tallest man Paul Sturgess, who not only attracted a lot of attention, but was a great guy to chat with!

North Africa Dreamin’

Phil Walton speaking at North Africa Dreamin

Phil Walton speaking at North Africa Dreamin

I was very proud to be invited to speak at Africa’s first Salesforce community event – North Africa Dreamin! It was a great trip to Casablanca, where I met some great people, and had some amazing food. It is amazing to see the Salesforce Ohana spreading around the globe.

Team Galacticos

2019 has been a fantastic year for Cloud Galacticos, with excellent growth in revenue and people. We have also picked up a number of new certification skills, and industry expertise. Between the team we have bags of experience in Healthcare & Life Sciences and also Financial Services, so they are now our official specialisms (although we work in many other sectors). 

We were really excited to welcome both Nkosi Ncube and Mike Gill (who you can see below at MuleSoft CONNECT 2019) to our development team. Both are smart, experienced, knowledgeable and great guys – exactly the type of people we want on the team!

Nkosi and Mike who joined the Cloud Galacticos team in 2019

Nkosi and Mike at Mulesoft Connect 2019

We also welcomed Malcolm Heeley to the team towards the end of the year. Malcolm has a lot of experience as a business analyst and project manager which we cannot wait to use!

Nell Meghani and Phil Walton with Malcolm Heeley (centre) who joined Cloud Galacticos at the end of 2019

Salesforce Consultancy

Certificates

Also between the team we have picked up a number of new Consultancy and Architecture certifications, which we are very proud of! We have also begun to deliver training for Salesforce, fantastic recognition of our deep knowledge of the platform.

Admin and Developer User Group

MuleSoft speaking at a User Developer Group

Manchester Salesforce Admin User Group

We also attended and helped run a number of user and developer groups in Manchester, Sheffield and Leeds – bringing Salesforce to the North of England! We had a variety of speakers including MulseSoft as you can see in the photo above.

Here’s to 2020!

About Cloud Galacticos

Cloud Galacticos is a Salesforce Silver Consulting Partner with an all star team. We are user and developer group leaders, bloggers, MVPs and all round Salesforce nerds. We have people all over the UK including Manchester, Leeds, York, Sheffield and London. If you are looking for a Salesforce partner with experience who can help you make the most of your org, why not give us a call?

 

fallbackcg

North Africa Dreamin 2019

Last month was the inaugural North Africa Dreamin event in Morocco. Here’s what our CEO, Phil Walton, had to say about his time at this new event…

Phil Walton talking about "The Free Stuff" at North Africa Dreamin

The first African Salesforce community event” was too tempting a tagline to turn down! When fellow MVP Houssam SAOUDY invited me to speak, I was very excited about my first speaking trip to Africa, and being a part of something unique.

A Friendly Welcome

Immediately on arrival, Houssam, Doria, and Abdelhakim, introduced themselves, and I felt welcomed into the local Ohana of a country I had never visited, and a continent I hardly knew. Note, as well the main languages in Morocco being Arabic, Berber, and French, I had zero skills with Arabic and Berber, and my french is pretty awful. Thankfully we all spoke Salesforce, and had the combined skills of friendliness and openness.

Casablanca by night, the location for North African Dreamin

 

Sharing “The Free Stuff”

On the day of the conference, I noticed many of the sessions were in French which made me worry that my session might need some local input… So Mehdi, one of the event volunteers (and Salesforce Consultant & Trailhead Ranger), joined me on stage for the presentation and helped with any translations and also helped chip in with some good content, thanks again Mehdi!

My session ‘The Free Stuff’ was an updated version of a presentation I have given a number of times. This latest update also seemed to be well received I am pleased to share. The most important part of it is that it’s an evolving session. I vary the content depending on the audience, location, and feedback given. I made a point of prompting the audience to share their most useful Salesforce resources – in return for some Manchester United swag – which then helps the audience and helps me for the next version!

Phil Walton presenting "The Free Stuff" at North Africa Dreamin

 

Any mention of North Africa Dreamin would not be complete without a (detailed) review of the food. I think this was my 9th community event in five continents, and it may win the Best Food prize! Lunch was a spectacular spread of Moroccan food! Thankfully it was spread over one and a half hours in two large banqueting rooms to allow me to sample everything. The Moroccan tea in-between sessions was sweet, minty and refreshing. We then went out for an evening meal with some of the speakers, sponsors, and Salesforce visitors, which was immense! Complete with belly dancers – thankfully I managed to avoid being dragged up to join the dance. Others were less lucky, I think all social media evidence has since been deleted..!

North Africa Dreamin Food

Photo Credit Cyril Louis

Dreamin Events Near You!

So why should YOU attend a Dreamin’ event? You don’t need to travel to a different continent (although coinciding an event with a holiday/travels is a great idea!), but check out Dreamin events in and around your home country such as*

Singapore – Singapore Dreamin, 15th January 2020

Japan – Japan Dreamin, 25th January 2020

Canada – Banff Dreamin, 13th March 2020

UK – London’s Calling, 20th March 2020

Spain – DreamOle, 24th April 2020

USA – Texas Dreamin, 16-17th July 2020

France – FrenchTouch Dreamin, 24th September 2020

* There are many many more Dreamin events to choose from, plus new ones all the time, so keep an eye out and give them your #TrailblazerCommunity support! 

In my opinion, these are the events when you can really learn new things. You can easily attend five or six plus sessions in a day, no queuing, no registering for each session in advance and joining a line to get your seat. No long treks against the tide to find the session location. It is also easier to meet people. With the average attendance being 200-300 people, you can easily introduce yourself to people, and get a chance to chat with speakers, Salesforce attendees, community leaders etc., that you struggle to do at a World Tour or Dreamforce. Hope to see you at a Dreamin event soon! 

 

Featured image based upon the following image of Casablanca and the event logo.