I started the new year with a big change! I left my role at Altium, where I’ve been an architect for just shy of 5 years, and have started a new journey as a consultant for Slalom. I’m really excited about the potential for acting in various roles on many projects with many customers to really hone my architect skills and be the best professional me I can be. And while I’m excited about many things on this new journey, one of the biggest changes is going from a Salesforce Customer to a Salesforce Partner. I’ve often wondered what the differences would be, and so I’m sure others have too. I’m going to try and document various stages of my journey in hopes that it might help someone else on their Salesforce journey and choose the path that works best for them!
I’ve done some freelance work in the past, so consulting is not completely new to me, but doing it full time certainly is. So, here’s what I’ve done in my first week as a consultant, and probably what you could expect anywhere if you choose the partner path.
Onboarding and Meeting New People
Of course there are your typical onboarding activities. You need to be provisioned in systems, you need to learn what each of those systems is for, and then you need to learn how to use all those systems. My biggest trip up during onboarding activities was re-learning all the Microsoft products. I’ve been an all Google all the time person forever, so moving to platforms like Outlook and Teams took some remembering. I even watched some YouTube videos on the best productivity tips for each of the systems to make sure I was setting them up in the best way. I recommend doing that for any new system! There’s always someone out there to learn from!
A key difference with consulting on this topic I think is that while I’m learning all about the core values of Slalom and their business processes, etc… I will also need to learn these things for any customers that I work with. In fact, my biggest worry so far with the consulting world is how do you work for two teams at once? If I’m full time on a project and embedded with a client, I essentially work for them and spend all my time with them, so how can I also live and breathe Slalom and have visibility and be part of the team at Slalom? I’ll keep you posted on this as I go on. So far, I’ve introduced myself to a bunch of people and have joined several internal groups. I think it will be key to just try and plug myself into the community as much as possible. And really, that’s no different than how I live and breathe in the Salesforce ecosystem. I plug myself into communities, volunteer where I can, and offer my skills to those who need them! I’m gonna be a pro at this, right?
What I haven’t done in my first week as a consultant
The biggest change from working as a customer so far? I haven’t had any project work yet! My last several companies I was knee deep in projects nearly from day 1. You are shadowing someone or playing in a sandbox or being assigned tickets already, depending on the role, etc. It’s always been a jump right in and get going mentality. I’ve actually spent this first week trying desperately to find things to do. Its a HUGE change of pace for me! I mean, there aren’t enough onboarding activities in the world to keep you busy for 40 hours a week, right? So, I’ve taken advantage of the Workday platform and done lots of learning modules. I earned 10 new Trailhead badges. I started studying for a new certification. This is all about to change, as starting Monday I’ll be full time with a new customer. Even though its a big change of pace for me, I’m enjoying the break and the opportunity to learn, stretch my legs, and not stressing over all the things that could be going wrong while I’m not looking. Once I start actual project work, I’m sure I won’t have as much free time, but also maybe this is a great time for me to introduce some work/life balance into my life? I’ll keep you posted on that too!
Learning about Consulting
If you are thinking about making a switch to consulting or are new in the ecosystem and wondering which path you should take, I recommend doing some learning first. (Of course!) Trailhead actually has some really great content about how to be a great Salesforce Partner:
There’s actually a ton though… I would just search “partner” and see what comes up and then start doing them all, one by one.
I’m super looking forward to this new journey and also looking forward to creating some content that will help others on their own journeys. I’m shooting for my next update to be around the one month mark. Until then…