In Blog, Salesforce Community

Salesforce without Community: Why Erica Kuhl is so Amazing

Did you go to Dreamforce this year? Attendees would have seen some pretty amazing things. The first floor of Moscone West was dedicated to Admins and Developers in the “Trailhead Zone.” There’s was a keynote dedicated to just Admins. Community User Group leaders and Salesforce MVPs gathered together to hear about the state of the community.

Didn’t go to Dreamforce this year? Have you gone to the Trailblazer Community? Maybe listened to the Salesforce Admin Podcast? Have you participated in your local user group? I know you’ve interacted with Salesforce MVPs because you’re reading this blog (thank you for reading).

Everything above is about the Salesforce community. It’s a place that millions of people participate in helping each other learn, solve problems, and grow their companies & careers. Without the community, what would Salesforce be like?

We might still have user groups, a Salesforce Admin podcast, and perhaps even dedicated zones to Admins. Maybe. I’ve been in the Salesforce ecosystem for over a decade and I can remember no Trailblazer community, no Admin/Trailhead zone, no podcasts for admins. Instead, we huddled masses yearning to learn about Salesforce were gravitating together on places like IRC, various forums, and social media. There wasn’t much of concerted effort to formalize a community within Salesforce.

Erica Kuhl changed that. Erica has been the community’s champion within Salesforce since as long as I remembered. It was her and her team that was instrumental in building the Trailblazer community. It was her team that a “community zone” at Dreamforce which morphed into the Admin & Trailhead zones. It’s been Erica’s and her team being the advocate for us that has led to many of things we take for granted.

So many people that work at Salesforce, help new admin and developers, and continue to fuel the growing ecosystem came out of early community efforts. I can honestly say that without the first community lithium forums, I would not have learned APEX when I did. Sure, I may know it now, but I wouldn’t have nearly ten years of experience of working with it. I would not have learned APEX or Visualforce back then without those community forums and a single – easy to access – way to reach thousands of experts.

I’m willing to bet if you talk to some of the “giants” in the community now they’ll echo similar experiences. Many of us owe our knowledge and our careers to the community that Erica has championed.

The community is continuing to evolve, grow, and improve. The only road block is having enough people to put the work hours in to accomplish all the changes that could happen. I’m sure Erica will get there. Not just because she’s awesome, but because the community has become integral to what Salesforce is as an organization. As a community we help mold the platform. We help new people learn about Salesforce. We support each other to ensure we are all successful.

So thank you Erica for being how Awesome you are! I’m proud to be a Kuhl Kid!

–Erica, seriously thank you… but be careful what you “ask” for:

Salesforce Community History

What did Community look like in 2009. Here’s Erica Kuhl sharing during the Online Community Summit 2009

Hear the History from Erica Kuhl herself at CMX Summit in 2014

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