The Salesforce World Tour London took place on 19th May 2016, in London of all places. Typically World Tour week is a big week involving multiple events, at the end of a number of long weeks to get everything ready for the show.
The clock is ticking
At BrightGen, we had a couple of items that were going to be premiered at the World Tour.
- Our new business accelerator for non-profits — BrightGiving. Luckily for me, my role in this is pretty much oversight — making sure the solution will scale and is future-proof, as well as ensuring that we can manage the development and delivery across multiple customers once it takes off. I say luckily for me, as I was building …
- A proof of concept booking page for our BrightMedia business accelerator using Lightning Components and the Lightning Experience. This topic deserves a post all to itself, if not more than one. Our existing booking page is based on Visualforce, which means that there is an overarching page and controller managing all user interactions. Re-engineering this as independent components that can be easily swapped in and out presents more than a few challenges. For example, how do you know that validation is complete when you don’t know how many components need validating, as they are independent from the component doing the validating. Lets just say that the first couple of weeks were pretty much creating the scaffolding — getting ready to build the functional components if you will. Its great fun, but with a hard deadline pragmatism has to rear it’s ugly head from time to time.
This completely ignores all the effort that was going on behind the scenes to get the stand, collateral and the various events we were hosting organised, but as I’m a techie I just had to make sure my side of things was done and rock up on the day. Before that though, there were a couple of other events.
Developing Wave Apps with Skip Sauls
In the run up to a World Tour event there are usually some Product Manager types from Salesforce over with time on their hands, who are kind enough to give us some of their time for a meetup. This year it was the turn of Skip Sauls, who many people will know from the Lightning Components side of things, who gave up his Tuesday evening to tell us what is coming to Wave development in the next couple of releases. I’m not going to go into any detail here, as we now record all our meetups for our Youtube channel, so if you subscribe to that and enable notifications you’ll get an email as soon as the video is available. Or you can keep an eye on my twitter feed.
One day down, two to go.
Salesforce Partner Forum
This is now an established event the day before the World Tour — originally called S-P-A-R-K and with us all fitting into a relatively small room (I have the T-shirt from my first one, which must have been six or seven years ago) it’s now grown into a 500 attendee event with an Executive Track demarcated by the sought after Salesforce white lanyard.
The day starts with a keynote with various luminaries of the Salesforce EMEA organisation closed out by Peter Coffee. I always enjoy watching Peter speak as not only is his content thought provoking, but he’s also an excellent speaker which reminds me how poor I am at it and how much I need to keep working at it.
There are separate tracks for SI and ISV partners and in one of the SI track sessions (Win Stories) Martin Tyte, COO of BrightGen, showcased our success to date with our BrightMedia business accelerator.
The day closes out with a Q&A with the EMEA partner team followed by a networking reception. I always find the reception useful, as its a great opportunity to catch up with other partners that I am working with and many old friends from the Salesforce ecosystem.
After an hour or so of networking, it was time for me to move on to the next event — a pre-World Tour MVP/Speaker dinner in the basement of Pizza East, crammed full of MVPs, Developer Evangelists and other members of the Salesforce community.
Several hours networking later I was on the train home, gearing up for the main event. And making sure I was on top of my presentation for the following day.
Salesforce World Tour London
For the third day in a row my alarm woke me up well before six o’clock and I packed my various devices and chargers and started the journey to the eXcel. As always seems to be the case, I’d pulled the first shift on stand duty and had to be show-ready by 07:45. Luckily the trains played ball for once and we were locked and loaded on time.
At 9:15 it was time to leave the stand and head to the keynote hall to watch Polly Sumner become the first woman to keynote the London Event.
The keynote saw the return of Anne-Marie Imafidon and the Stemettes, who I first encountered at the Ladies Who Salesforce event in May, as well as some great success stories from the likes of Aston Martin (who brought along a beautiful DB11 which distracted me for some time).
After the keynote it was a mixture of stand duty and networking, sometimes with legends
Until 15:30 when it was time for my talk in the Trailhead Dev Theatre on Responsive App Design with the Salesforce Lightning Design System.
Not long after this it was time for YANR (Yet Another Networking Reception!) which gave me a chance to catch up with other old friends who had been as busy as me during the day. This was by no means the end of the day, as then it was onwards and upwards to the BrightGen cocktail party. This was a couple of hundred yards from the Expo Hall, but it took about 25 minutes as I kept bumping into people that I knew and hadn’t seen during the day — turns out that if you’ve been in this space for nigh on 8 years, you’ll make a lot of friends.
Obviously I was a sober and calming influence at the cocktail party, limiting myself to a celebratory cupcake to commemorate BrightGen’s 10th birthday
And that was pretty much that, bar a trip into central London and a few more beers at the BrightGen after party. When I finally got home a blast from my past was on the TV — Vic Reeves Big Night Out, which gave me an idea for the title of a post.
Friday was a much quieter affair, but no less busy as I was well overdue to start work on the Salesforce Summer 16 Release Webinar that myself and Clive Platt will be presenting to our customers and prospects in June — stay tuned on twitter for more details if your are interested in attending.
I’m better known in the Salesforce community as Bob Buzzard — 10 x Certified, including Technical Architect, 5 x MVP and CTO of BrightGen, a Platinum Cloud Alliance Partner in the United Kingdom.
You can find my (usually) more technical thoughts at the Bob Buzzard Blog