In my previous blogs, I introduced you to different tools that can make your life easier as a Salesforce Admin/Developer but after attending the ever so awesome Midwest Dreamin’ conference in Chicago, I realized that there is another tool out there (geared toward women) that not everyone is aware of, Girly Geeks. At this years Midwest Dreamin’, there was a booth set up by the Girly Geek leaders from Wisconsin (Kelly Leslie), Chicago (Jocelyn Fennewald and Machell Enke) and St. Louis(Erin Gilbert). The booth was showcasing the newly formed Midwest Girly Geeks webinar series, Thirsty Thursday. The leaders reached out to the Girly Geek members to see if anyone was interested in helping man the booth so the leaders could hit some sessions too.
I decided to pick up a couple of shifts and was able to meet women from all over, some of which had no idea what Girly Geeks even was or what they were about. I thought it was important to try and help spread the word, while I can’t speak for everyone, I can tell you what it is for me. First, I must admit I am anything but girly, in fact I just spent the last 30 minutes trying to figure out how to fishtail braid my daughter’s hair, thank goodness for Wiki How! I am, however, very proud to say I am definitely a Geek and love to geek out about Salesforce with absolutely anyone who will listen.
The first Wisconsin Chapter meeting was held on February 6th, 2014 at the Great Dane Pub in Madison and has been helping me grow both professionally and personally since. The group constantly encourages me to step outside of my comfort zone and do things that I would have never thought I was capable of.
A prime example of where I was a few years ago, was when my boss asked me to present to the Sales Reps on how to create List Views in Salesforce; not too difficult of a topic, but when it was my turn to talk, I stumbled, stuttered, but somehow managed to make my way through it (although, not sure if they actually learned anything). The funny part is, they weren’t even in the room, they were dialed in on a conference call. Fast forward to the present, where I have been volunteering to present at the Wisconsin User Group (another fantastic supporting group of people), I will also be part of a discussion panel at Dreamforce and I am currently co-leading a virtual study group! I still have a ton of anxiety but I’ve been able to get past it thanks to the support of all of our Girly Geek members along with additional friends and mentors in my life.
Girly Geeks is a group of Women in Technology, with a focus on the Salesforce.com platform, but it is more than that. It is also a support system, a place where you can feel comfortable asking questions that you might be too shy to ask elsewhere. Recently, we have been meeting up for dinner in Lake Mills then moving over to the library to go over the Force.com workbook and other topics of interest. The best way to get to know Girly Geeks is to join in on one of the Thirsty Thursday webinars, you get to be in the comfort of your own home potentially drinking wine and learning about amazing topics, like Communities, Imposter Syndrome, Networking, Negotiations, etc. After you see how awesome these Girly Geeks are, you will want to attend your next local chapter’s meet up. Bring a friend if you are shy, trust me it helps! If there isn’t a group in your area, don’t let that stop you either, you can start your own!
For those of you that were wondering, the braid actually turned out pretty decent for my first attempt…