#MVPbuzzChat with Kevin Crossman

Image result for kevin crossmanFor Episode 24 of the #MVPbuzzChat interview series, I sat down to talk with fellow Office Servers & Services MVP Kevin Crossman (@kevincrossman), Manager of IT Collaboration (Office 365 Content Collaboration Service Owner) at Juniper Networks, based in Sunnyvale, California (near where I grew up, btw). Kevin has had his MVP for a couple years, and entered the program with a focus on Yammer, but like many of us in the collaboration space, he works across SharePoint, Yammer, Teams, and other community-management related topics and technologies.

In the video, Kevin share’s his passion for describing use cases where Microsoft Teams and Yammer can and should co-exist, despite the superficial similarities with individual messages on each platform (see his blog post and related PPT slides), and I shared my own recent presentation on SharePoint and Teams, in which I also discuss Yammer with my audiences. One topic we’ve discussed in past conversations, and which came up again during this session, was the need to keep things positive and talk about the benefits of each, rather than tearing the individual products/workloads down for their real/perceived shortcomings, marketing baggage, etc.

As a side note — there are a few MVPs who have made it well known that they are not fans of Yammer, but as we discuss, it is a powerful solution that is often the best tool to solve some business needs. I tend to refer to this issue within the MVP community as a “religious battle” with zealots on both sides. However, the reality is that no single tool or platform can meet all requirements, and there are clear cases for using SharePoint, Teams, or Yammer — and Microsoft has shifted their own messaging and positioning to this view. Honestly, this hot point within the community is diminishing as new MVPs enter the program, and as Microsoft provides deeper integrations via the Microsoft Graph.

Of course, most of our discussion was not about MVP community issues, but more around the differences and scenarios between Teams and Yammer, and how to leverage the best of both — especially n the topic of discovery, which is an essential aspect of developing engagement. For organizations who use one solution but not the other, I would encourage you to explore how the two solutions together can provide additional flexibility in how you collaborate…..and ping Kevin with your questions 🙂

If you would like to connect with Kevin directly, you can find him on the Microsoft Tech Community, Twitter, LinkedIn, and on his blog.

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.