Dreamforce 2014 – Are You Ready Higher Ed Colleagues?
By: Nicholas Zinser
We’re less than a week away from the start of Dreamforce 2014, and the higher education sector is going to offer numerous activities for you to learn, network, and collaborate over the course of the week. Whether you’re new to Dreamforce or a multi-year veteran of the event, this is the perfect time to review the key events and preparation guidelines you’ll need to succeed. Here is Top 5 Opportunities list for higher ed:
1. Make sure you’re connected.
The Higher Education Kickoff should energize you with several success stories from leaders in Higher Education focused on the theme of The Connected Campus. Join everyone at the Marriott Marquis on Monday afternoon from 3:00-4:00 PM to learn more and network with other institutions. Follow @SFDCFoundation and use #DF14HED to join the conversation on Twitter.
2. Show your spirit!
Wear your school t-shirt (or hat or scarf) on Monday, October 13 to the Higher Ed Kickoff to show your school spirit! I have yet to decide if I’ll wear official University flip-flops to the event on Monday. You’ll have to attend to find out!
3. Chart the future.
Did you know that Higher Education has its own User Group? Come share and learn from the co-leads at the Higher Ed User Group Meetup on Tuesday. Dave Perry and I will talk about our plans for the upcoming year and want to hear your feedback on what programming will make this a successful experience for you. You can join the User Group by going to the Success Community and selecting User Groups from the “More” menu. Make sure to have a profile photo and the name of your institution updated in your profile!
This year, there are over two dozen Circles Of Success targeted to the Non-Profit and Higher Ed sectors in the Foundation Zone. These sessions are smaller than a normal breakout session and will be moderated by Foundation staff as well as your industry colleagues. Topics will include everything from using Chatter to make your organization social to how you as an Administrator can assist your institution in developing a long-term plan for the Salesforce1 Platform. With only a few seats available at each session, these will be sure to fill up quickly.
5. Meeting people is easy.
If you want to attend keynotes or other sessions with fellow colleagues, check out the Sector: Higher Education group at the Power of Us Hub. In addition to normal Chatter discussion there, you can find a signup form for a group messaging app we’ll use during the conference. Our goal is to make sure nobody misses an opportunity for networking.
If you’re still looking for some lists of what to bring, thoughts on Agenda Builder and other activities, I recommend these two blog posts from my fellow Salesforce MVPs. Brent Downey’s blog over at Admin Hero has a great post from August – 30 Insider Dreamforce Tips & Tricks – which lists good things to pack as well as an excellent tip at the very end. I also enjoyed Geraldine Gray’s post from last month – Top 5 Dreamforce Tips for the Newbie – as a great introduction to Dreamforce. Though 2014 marks my sixth Dreamforce, I know I can always learn something new each year.
Here’s to a successful event for everyone in Higher Ed. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me on the Power of Us Hub, the Success Community, or on Twitter @nzinser. See you in San Francisco!
About the Author
Nicholas Zinser has worked in higher education for over 17 years, focusing on technology and enrollment management. Nick was recognized as a Salesforce MVP in the Spring of 2014, and is a member of the Salesforce Higher Education Advisory Council.
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