October 2015 Content Wrap-Up

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Returning from a 10 day trip to Amsterdam and Barcelona on September 30th, I knew October was going to be another jam-packed month, but I set a goal of writing 30 articles during the month. I fell short of that goal, but with valid reasons: to complete some other major content projects which will roll out later in the year. While it’s always good to be home, for those who work remotely – especially if you work with team on other continents – you tend to put in much longer hours than the typical 9-to-5 job. To kick off the month, I participated in the online Collab365 event, introducing the keynote speaker, Jeremy Thake, and then acting at moderator for Richard Harbridge and Jeff Shuey, as well. My own session on SharePoint adoption was scheduled for 5am on the 8th, which is my birthday. Happy birthday to me. Don’t worry, I napped mid-day. From home, I

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was back on a plane and returning to Amsterdam (twice in 3 weeks!) for UnityConnect where I presented on productivity, and shared some insights into the Beezy team’s planning and design methodology when we work with customers, sharing some best practices on designing a user experience that “fits” your unique corporate culture and requirements.

imageAfter a couple extra days for 2016 planning with my leadership team, I returned home, and joined my compatriots Benjamin Niaulin (@bniaulin), Marc Anderson (@sympmarc), and Naomi Moneypenny (@nmoneypenny) for our monthly CollabTalk show. I had to dial in from the Microsoft Civica offices in downtown Bellevue, and from there immediately headed back to the airport to catch my flight to Raleigh, North Carolina to keynote the inaugural SharePoint Engage event. My session on navigating the evolving social capabilities in SharePoint and Office 365 is linked below – and is a version of the keynote I gave at SPS Barcelona last month. Of course, no rest for the weary. As soon as I returned from the east coast, it was time for SharePoint Saturday Redmond, which had an excellent turnout and solid sponsor support. The photo above is of Microsoft’s Bill Baer (@williambaer) and I as I was about to introduce him for his morning keynote (thanks again Bill for waking up early!). And the photo to the left is Bill in the penultimate SharePoint photo: sitting on a SharePoint bean bag chair, wrapped in the ShareQuilt, holding a still shrink-wrapped copy of SPS2001 that has been signed by CVP Jeff Teper.

And to wrap up the month, I hosted another #CollabTalk tweetjam on the topic of evolving project management workloads, and presented on a webinar with partner Intlock (CardioLog Analytics) on how to get business and IT to work better together.

I predict that November will be much, much quieter. I am home all week, participating in another MVP Summit on Microsoft campus. The best part of this event, for me, is having some of my closest friends in town – people I generally see when we’re traveling the world together – but I get to go home at night and sleep in my own bed, which is awesome. More events here in Seattle, people. I deserve the break Smile

Of course, on Friday I am back out on the road, this time heading to beautiful Stockholm, Sweden for the latest European SharePoint Conference, where my company Beezy is a finalist for Best Office 365 Solution, and where I’ll be giving a full-day workshop on Yammer and Office 365 Productivity, as well as a session on adoption. Oh, and I’m also on a panel with Dan Holme, Chris McNulty and others. It’s going to be a busy couple weeks, but then I’m home for a long stretch, where I’m excited to just work on content, get Beezy’s marketing calendar on track for the rest of Q4 and into Q1, and start planning for SPTechCon Austin and SharePointFest Denver. So much to do, so little time…

At the center of my writing these days are topics around social collaboration and productivity. I have quite a few ideas for content in the pipeline, and will be working with several partners on a large study, including surveys, a whitepaper, and ebooks, which should start to make their way into public view by December.

Of course, the transition to the cloud continues to be a favorite topic:

I had hoped to transfer some of my written notes into articles this month, but just didn’t have the time. I do a ton of reading while I fly (because I don’t sleep) and use the old fashioned method of pen and paper to outline articles while reading, usually Wired or HBR or Inc. This past month, I jotted down a couple ideas that were more or less about the technology culture we live in, and how we struggle with the technology we use:

Many of my posts trend toward business analyst topics, with a focus on governance – of course. I did not disappoint in October:

And what benefit is having a blog if you don’t do some level of blatant self-promotion? Most of this content is around the Intlock webinar, the CollabTalk show on ITUnity.com, and my monthly #CollabTalk tweetjam:

In support of the #CollabTalk tweetjam topic, I also interviewed Project MVP and my good friend Treb Gatte (@tgatte) for SharePoint-Community.net and touched on a topic that is still near and dear to me – project and portfolio management. With Microsoft’s announcements around Office 365 Planner, which includes a kanban-like list management capability and some other project management-lite capabilities, I’m sure I’ll be writing about this more in the future. Of course, my article above on why end users continue to ask for social also touches on the O365 Planner announcement, and Groups in particular, as Microsoft needs to be careful not to overbuild, in my opinion.

And finally, is support of some of the recent changes to the Microsoft MVP program, I penned this post for ITUnity that discusses some of the changes. Overall, the changes were very much accepted within the MVP community, and I’m looking forward to a fantastic Summit this week and closer relations to Microsoft and the Developer Experience (DX) team.

Oh yeah, and I did get a couple mentions this past month:

Ok, need to send off a couple final slides to the ESPC team for a print run tomorrow, and then off to sleep for an early morning start. Flood waters have closed off the lower bridge out of Duvall, making the 10 mile commute to the Microsoft campus slow…so I’m up and out early, and may join some of my compatriots for breakfast in Bellevue before heading over to campus for Summit. Nite!

Christian Buckley

Christian is a Microsoft Regional Director and Office Apps & Services MVP, and the Founder & CEO of CollabTalk LLC, an independent research and technical marketing services firm based in Lehi, Utah, through which he provides fractional-CMO for partners in the Microsoft ecosystem.