Salesforce Admins Podcast Retro

Today on the Salesforce Admins Podcast, we’ve got the Monthly Retro for May.

Join us as we talk about the latest and greatest Salesforce content from May and reflect on an amazing, in-person TrailblazerDX. 

You should subscribe for the full episode, but here are a few takeaways from our conversation from our Monthly Retro.

TrailblazerDX

The April Retro dropped in the midst of TDX, so we wanted to take a moment to reflect on the amazing experience of being in person again. Many selfies were taken. We also launched the Salesforce Admin Skills Kit, a blueprint for the skills that help make a successful Salesforce Admin. It brings together all the skills beyond technical training that you need to succeed. There were so many great things going on at TDX, so be sure to consult the wrap-up and listen to our reflections on this episode.

Blog highlights from May

One of our favorite blog posts from the month happens to be a part of our new blog series, “Skills for Succes”—it’s directly tied to the Salesforce Admin Skills Kit. This particular post highlights what goes into Business Analysis, and why it’s an essential skill for any admin to cultivate.

Video highlights from May

Jennifer Lee has been a force of nature on the Admin Evangelist team. She’s doing a YouTube Live series where she uses automation and Flow to solve problems right in front of your very eyes. She stops and answers questions, too, so make sure to tune in and don’t miss this unique learning opportunity. Also, if you haven’t yet caught up on Release Readiness for Summer ‘22, make sure to hop on that. 

Podcast highlights from May

Gillian wanted to highlight two great pods from May. We got to meet Andrew Russo, a true #AwesomeAdmin who broke down how he created a user management super app that does all that and a bag of chips. We also had Khushwant Singh on to demystify Experience Cloud. His team is up to all sorts of great work bringing dynamic forms to standard objects and improving performance all over the platform.

Podcast swag

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Full show transcript

Mike:
Welcome to the Salesforce Admins Podcast in the May Monthly Retro for 2022. I’m your host Mike Gerholdt. And in this episode, we will review or cover the top product, community and careers content for the month of May. And to help me do that, boy, I think I know the familiar voice of Gillian Bruce.

Gillian:
Hey it’s May.

Mike:
Haha. Oh, that only works in May.

Gillian:
I couldn’t help it. I had to do that. I had to do it.

Mike:
Hey October. Nope. Doesn’t work.

Gillian:
Nope, Nope. Nope. Well, Mike it’s been quite a month. It flew by, it feels like, especially after TrailblazerDX. I mean, it’s just like the pace of everything just is BA boom, BA boom, BA boom. Here we go.

Mike:
There was TrailblazerDX, come back, sleep, wake up. Hey its Memorial day. Let’s grill a hot dog.

Gillian:
I actually… I think in our house we do a lot of long smoked meats. So there’ll probably be some sort of pulled pork or ribs or something happening.

Mike:
You know, people like it when we talk about food on the podcast.

Gillian:
Oh, Well we should get Dave and my husband on the podcast. You could talk for hours about smoking meat on the Weber grill.

Mike:
Of course.

Gillian:
Yes. But that’s another, that’s another theme.

Mike:
I’m sure there’s a food podcast for that.

Gillian:
I’m sure there is. We’ll have an offshoot. We’ll have a spoof series.

Mike:
Right.

Gillian:
So first [inaudible 00:01:28] avenues who eat everything podcast.

Mike:
Well that’s all of us. So the April retro, we actually had come out and then TDX was happening. So we couldn’t wrap TDX in that. I figured we’d do that this month.

Gillian:
Yeah. Well, I mean, there was a lot that happened. There was the physical event experience of seeing everyone, which was so great. And just to kind of have that.

Mike:
Selfies.

Gillian:
Selfies.

Mike:
Again, this is the first time I got to do an outside of DC. I got to do a selfie.

Gillian:
I yeah, well again, one of my favorite things is when people come up to us and say, oh my gosh, I’ve been listening to your podcast forever. Or this episode help me do this thing. And now I got this different career. I had so many people tell me that they listen to the podcast. So thank you for listening. Thank you for coming up and making it a point to tell me that you listen to the podcast. It makes us feel really good and really happy to always know that people are listening and that the content we share is valuable. So thank you for doing that. If you ever see us at any event, please make it a point to come up and say hi and introduce yourself because…

Mike:
Yeah, there’s no shame in that game, have at it.

Gillian:
I love that.

Mike:
I like it. So we did a few things at TDX.

Gillian:
Just a few, just a few.

Mike:
You launched something.

Gillian:
The Salesforce, Admins Skills Kit. It is out there in the wild. Yeah, we, this is something we’ve been working on for quite a while, about a year and a half of research and focus groups and surveys and all kinds of stuff. And now we’ve got a great resource that is on admin.salesforce.com/skillskit. This is basically 14 core admin skills that we… I mean, 14 we know is a lot. So these are basically all just… It’s a framework, it’s a blueprint so that you can identify the skills that help make a successful Salesforce Administrator. You don’t have to have all 14 of them, but I guarantee if you look at the list, you can already identify that you have quite a few of them. The great part about the skills kit is that it’s for net new, brand new admins. It’s for admins who are experienced and looking to up level their careers.

Gillian:
And it’s for people who are looking to hire admins. So for employers and it shows sample language of what it looks like to represent the skill, let’s say problem solving within the context of the work that you have done, within the work that you hope to do. And then if you’re looking to hire an admin, who’s really good at problem solving. We give you some language for that as well, as well as resources to help you either further develop that skill or learn more about it. And it’s a quite a robust resource and yeah, I mean, Mike, you saw some of the reactions, how do you think people are thinking about This?

Mike:
So it’s so cool. I was actually, while you’re talking about it, clicking through on the site, because yes, I was a part of the meetings and I paid attention, but clicking through on the site is fun. This is so I think in people’s heads, it’s existed for a long time. Right. And I think it’s part of why you see such momentum behind being a Salesforce Admin, because like we knew in our heart communication and problem solving and data management and business analysis, I’m just using a few, were things that we did, were skills that we have. This kind of put it all together.

Mike:
Right. It’s the perfect concoction of, okay, now I know why I’m so ambitious about this or why I’m so good at talking with my users, because I have good communication skills. Right. That’s what I thought about it. I also just… It was so neat to see people talk about it and to see the reaction as you went through the presentation of really feeling like this thing that I’m pursuing and doing is real. And now I have a common way to talk to my manager or perspective company with them about what I want to do and how I’ll revolutionize their business.

Gillian:
Yep. And that’s the whole point, Mike, I think this is what we really want to do with this kit, is empower everyone to capture the work that they’re doing and represent it in a way that demonstrates that skill set within the context of the Salesforce ecosystem. Right. And even connecting it with product and it’s pretty great. You know, we’re really good at giving you all the technical training you could want, between Trailhead and getting certifications, but this is kind of those business skills that you can’t just, go learn how to, customize a lightning page.

Mike:
Yeah.

Gillian:
Yes, that is part of thinking like a user design right. Designer… My designer’s mindset is actually what we call that skill, but you know, kind of connecting the dots there is really important. And yeah, we really… We’re excited that people seem to have a very, are very eager to dig into this. And we actually have already seen people on Twitter or LinkedIn say, Hey, after looking at this, it made me want to redo my resume. And here’s my new resume based on what I found in the skills kit. And it’s like, yes, this is the whole point. So yeah. If you’ve got feedback, let us know. There’s a way to provide feedback right there on the skills kit site. So we want to know this is a living resource. We’re going to continue to iterate on it based on feedback from the community. So check it out.

Mike:
The other thing I’m looking at… We had a really cool low code called super session. I suppose that’s built fast with the Salesforce platform and Leanne also hosted, I’m going to call it an after party, because that’s what it should have been called, but an after party live Q and A, ask the expert session about it.

Mike:
And I see familiar faces, Diana Jaffy is there, but shout out to Cheryl Feldman. So I know Cheryl does a lot for our team. I think the admin relations team knows that, but if you’re listening to the podcast, Cheryl’s just been such a rockstar since she came on at Salesforce and never lost that true north star of I’m in it for admins and I’m paying attention to what admins want. And she was on this panel. I just sent a personal email to Cheryl today asking for a favor from TDX and she immediately responded. I think it’s really cool as a former customer to see another former customer be at Salesforce and keep that north star and just know that you have somebody just fiercely advocating for you on the inside. So little bit of a tangent, but also it was a really cool super session.

Gillian:
It was a really great super session. Well, and to your point, I think what we, every single one of the product managers who is in that panel that Leanne hosted, is truly an admin advocate. And I think that’s one of the things that is really great as we’ve seen over the years, Cheryl Feldman clearly has an… She was an admin, now she is advocating for admins from within the product organization, which is an incredibly powerful thing for us.

Gillian:
But you know, we have so many product managers and people within our product leadership who really understand the importance of admins. And so it’s really great to get them, on camera, in front of audiences, talking about that, talking about how admins help guide all the product decisions that they make and how they’re always really thinking about them. And admins out there, if you feel like you’ve got feedback for product, guess what they really want that feedback. So it’s really great to know that, you know, as large as the platform continues to grow admins were really still at the heart of it, which is nice.

Mike:
I’m looking at Jay giving a packed session, I’ll call it packed, because I don’t think we did some of the spaces correct, but packed session on configuration kits.

Gillian:
Oh, another amazing resource.

Mike:
Yep, we had a lot of kits at trailblazer DX this year. Didn’t we?

Gillian:
Yeah, we did a lot.

Mike:
You get a kit and you get a kit, some are skills and configuration… That’s funny in my head, funny in my head.

Gillian:
The whole kitten kamboodle. We were kitted out for Trailblazer DX.

Mike:
Yep.

Gillian:
But yeah, the configuration kits are amazing. It’s such a great resource. Again, it’s the other end of the spectrum in terms of guides and resources that we can provide for admins where it’s really kind of technical, how to guides. And I mean…

Mike:
It’s also the stuff I wish I would’ve had when I was an admin.

Gillian:
Yeah.

Mike:
You know, just tell me which way I should be thinking here. So Gillian, what was a favorite moment that stood out for you at TDX?

Gillian:
Oh, there were so many. I think some… One of my more favorite moments is, I got to do a few of the trailblazer interviews for Salesforce Plus on the broadcast. And I got to tell you, the fact that people were excited to meet me and it wasn’t that they were excited to meet me. They were excited to get connected with the people at Salesforce who have made an impact in their lives and really help them in some way, they get inspired to do more for others or help them make a decision in their career trajectory. That made a huge difference. I was like a spewing fountain of tears for basically the whole day and a two days at TDX because I was so happy to see people. I felt so rewarded. Rewarded in terms of getting feedback directly for folks.

Gillian:
I think that’s one of the things we’ve missed quite a bit in the last few years is getting that direct feedback. We are like, Hey, we’re putting this stuff out there. Is it useful? I don’t know. And getting real deal feedback from people. And I do think just that, feeling the impact of the work that the content that our team creates and puts out there is very, very, very rewarding and meeting new people. I mean, Mike, I know we made a new admin friend who was on the podcast. Yeah.

Mike:
Yeah. She was on last week.

Mike:
I will echo all of that in saying, I think a favorite, there was many, but one moment that really stood out for me was the first time going up those moscone escalators and landing at that second floor and just feeling that energy. Right. Like I hadn’t, and yes, I’d been to DC. I hadn’t felt that in a while. And, it’s like the world vibrates different when you’re at an event and just feeling that anxiousness of people getting the rooms or theater sessions or, the thrill of, having gotten something new or, and there are tons of people walking around with the little, Codys and Astros and stuff. And just, you never thought you would miss that. And then when it was gone and then you get it back, you’re like, oh my God, that’s so cool. I had no idea I missed that.

Gillian:
It makes you appreciate things that you never really, that you kind of took for granted in some ways.

Mike:
Absolutely. So that was TDX. We would love… We’re on the Twitters. You could tweet us your favorite moment. That would be fun and I’ll star it or tweet it back in case you’re listening. We put out some blogs and some pods and stuff. Gillian, I highlighted the importance of business analysis skills for success. Let’s just continue the skills talk. I highlighted it because I think business analysis is key for admins, but…

Gillian:
Yeah.

Mike:
I would love your perspective.

Gillian:
So this is a great blog. It’s one of my favorites that we have. It’s part of our whole series of admin skills blogs. Meant to compliment the admin skills kit. So we have, for each of the 14 skills, we have a community expert talking about how to hone and develop and really make yourself shine with this skill within the context of the Salesforce ecosystem. This is an amazing blog. This BA one is so strong. It’s by one of our favorite partners, Vanessa Grant. It’s really helpful. In fact, I was on a phone call. I think you were on the call with me, Mike, just yesterday with another admin working on another project. And he was like, is the BA blog out yet? Is it out yet? I need to send it to my users because I’m having a hard time explaining why they are getting frustrated.

Mike:
Yeah.

Gillian:
So really great resource, read it.

Mike:
Yeah, no, it was good. So the other thing I wanted to highlight and I’ll put this in rarefied air category, is so… The link we’ll put to is the automate this blog post, but it’s actually something a little bit cooler in my opinion, that Jennifer Lee is doing on our team, which is a YouTube live video where she’s walking through with people in the community, doing flow stuff and answering questions. And I happen to catch this on the migrate workflow rules and processes to flow. And I just thought it was so cool. This was just one of those where I think we’re doing something no one else is doing. And I think it’s content that I know if I had my fingers on a keyboard building stuff in Salesforce, I would want to watch. So I put that down because I had a lot of fun watching it and watching them answer questions live, it was bringing TDX to life.

Gillian:
The fact that Jennifer Lee is doing this live is so cool. It is totally different from anything else that we’re doing. And yeah, this is a really fun way to… I mean, talk about getting direct access to one of the flow experts. This is a very cool opportunity and yeah. Amazing content. You’re… All those automate this sessions. Y’all bookmark them, put them on your calendar.

Mike:
Oh seriously. It’s so fu… How many people do know do live things anymore?

Gillian:
Very few.

Mike:
Like Saturday Night Live…

Gillian:
Even that’s live to tape, right? So…

Mike:
I could… No, I don’t know. That’s a good question. Wow. I have all these questions. We’re live.

Gillian:
We are live. We are live.

Mike:
Speaking of live. So I threw this in because I know the pod comes out after release of [inaudible 00:16:20] Live on May 20th, but [inaudible 00:16:22] Live is on May 20th. And if you didn’t watch it, you need to go back and watch it.

Gillian:
Yep. You do need to watch it. It’s super important. It’s a great way to get quickly up to speed with all the things you need to know about the summer release. There’s a lot as always. And it’s run by, again, one of our most amazing admin evangelist, Jennifer Lee, who is famous for writing and capturing all of the updates into her mega blog, as we call it here at Salesforce for [crosstalk 00:16:50] for admins. And she’s got some great product managers that joined to talk about their updates and this release. So definitely go back and watch it. If you have not already. Again, release notes can be pretty overwhelming. So this is kind of your cliff notes, cliffs notes video version of the release notes.

Mike:
Yeah. And also the fun version, it’s way more fun to watch release readiness than to read release notes.

Gillian:
A Hundred percent. Yes.

Mike:
Gillian. We did some podcasts in May.

Gillian:
We sure did.

Mike:
Well, actually you did more than I did, but can you talk about the two that stood out for you?

Gillian:
Yeah, so kind of real quick, we had two that I really wanted to highlight. Number one is Andrew Russo. Andrew Russo is a really, really super awesome admin. He is… He’s actually, well, he’s… I’m working on making him Salesforce famous because he’s got so much great wisdom to impart and share it with other admins. We had him on the podcast to really go in depth about how he thought about creating this great super app that he has to manage his users, which does everything from help track how much time they’re waiting for users to respond to requests, to coaching users through user, how to create a user story, through actually calculating how much time the work that his team has done has saved the company. So it was really great to kind of get into his head and understand how he thinks about creating a strategy behind creating those kinds of things.

Gillian:
Because I think we should all try and think like Andrew, because he creates incredible solutions. And stay tuned, we’re going to have more from Andrew coming up in the next few months, but that was a really fun one. Another podcast I want to highlight kind of on the other end is we talked to one of our great product leaders here at Salesforce, Kush, who actually is in charge of all things experience at Salesforce. So, that means experience cloud, it means experience services. So things like lightning pages, things like the lightning design system. It was so great to talk to him because he really kind of, told us everything that his team has been working on over the last year in terms of re-architecting, pretty much the whole experience for admin.

Gillian:
Everything from improving the performance, some of the really complex things that he and his team have been trying to solve, also about finishing jobs that we start, right. Hey, we build this thing in lightning experience, why don’t we bring it to the rest of the product. And things like, okay, so we have dynamic lightning pages for custom objects. Well, we’re going to get them to standard. We’re actually going to finish this job. So it was really great to hear from Kush from a product leadership standpoint and kind of an overall vision.

Mike:
I like it.

Gillian:
Yeah. It was really good.

Mike:
Well, we will include links to all of those things just in case you haven’t already clicked them and read them two or three times, go back, listen to a pod again. It’s fun.

Gillian:
It is. It’s a good recap.

Mike:
While you’re out grilling some meat or non meat, maybe veggie burger.

Gillian:
They may or may not be doing that.

Mike:
Right, in May. Hmm. I see what you did there. That’s good. If you want to learn more about all the things we just talked about, minus the veggie burger, probably don’t have any articles on that, you can go to admin.salesforce.com to find links and resources. You can also stay up to date with us on social for all things admin.

Mike:
Shout out to Brittany who does that. She was at TDX. I’m sure a lot of people ran into her. She runs our Twitter handle at Salesforce admins, no I, and of course I’m on Twitter at Mike Gerholdt and Gillian is on Twitter at Gillian K Bruce. So with that, stay safe, stay awesome. And stay tuned for the next episode. We’ll see you in the cloud.

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