I know, I know, everyone else is posting their Dreamforce 2018 recap. And I’ll be doing that too in a bit. But right now I am LONG overdue in sharing my recap of Forcelandia, and I’m tired of seeing my reminder to myself to write this post. So here goes.
Back in August I went to Denver to attend the 2nd annual WITness Success conference (you can read my recap of that wonderful event here). At WITness success I co-presented a session with Charly Prinsloo about the #JourneytoCTA, and it went so well that she invited me to co-present with her again at Forcelandia. I’d never been to Portland, and I really enjoyed my first community event experience, so I immediately started scheming on how I could fit this trip in. Luckily, I was going to end up being on the west coast for a work meeting earlier in the week, so it wasn’t too much farther to fly up the coast.
The day before the conference, as I was waiting for my Uber to take me to LAX to fly to Portland, I got a call from Charly. I knew something was up immediately, and she told me that she was sick and wouldn’t be able to make it to Forcelandia. Eek!
I decided to go forward as a solo presenter, rather than cancel our session. But I had to think through how I would make our duo presentation a solo talk. I had time to think, because my flight was delayed. I landed in Portland just after midnight and headed straight to the Airbnb I was sharing with the amazing Kristi Campbell, who met for the first time at WITness Success.
Forcelandia is one of the only, if not the only, Salesforce community event focused on curating top notch developer-centric content. It’s in it’s 4th year, and is held at Mcmenamins Kennedy School, a former elementary school turned eccentric hotel. It reminded me a lot Hogwarts, but with a more confusing floor plan.
The event itself was fantastic. Tons of brilliant Salesforce folks were presenting and/or in attendance, including Kevin Poorman, David Liu, Steven Herod, Carolyn Grabill, Zayne Turner and Irena Miziolek, just to name a few.
Highlights included Leslie Gestautas singing the Forcelandia Fight Song, Zayne Turner making an epic entrance during the Opening Keynote, the Women in Tech breakfast featuring CTA Irena Miziolek, and learning a ton from Melissa Hansen during her amazing presentation on Lightning Component Communication.
My session went well, but it was a lot different than the WITness Success presentation. It was a smaller room, and my energy alone is quite different from the energy Charly and I had together. That said, a lot of people came up to me after I was finished and told me that they enjoyed my session a lot, and that it felt like a safe space. On way back to Boston I decided that I needed back-up for the 40 minute breakout session I would be doing at Dreamforce. Luckily, two of my favorite Arch Ladies agreed to join me. Stay tuned to hear about how Ladies Be Architects took Dreamforce!
Susannah Kate St-Germain is a 17x certified Colombian-American Salesforce nerd, travel fanatic, and aspiring Certified Technical Architect.