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Why I’m Prioritizing Nonprofit Dreamin’ over Dreamforce

Dreamforce 23 Calling all Trailblazers

If Only Time and Money Were Infinite…Prioritizing Purpose Over Hype

In an ideal world, where time and money were infinite resources, I would have eagerly packed my bags and headed to San Francisco for Dreamforce this week. But the reality is, these resources are finite, and choices must be made. Instead of joining the ‘greatest’ Salesforce event of the year, I have decided to prioritize attending Nonprofit Dreamin’ and participating in an Open Commons Community Sprint in Chicago at the end of October and the beginning of November.

Timing vs. Priorities: Balancing Work and Passion

Some might argue that my choice is solely based on timing, with a major project go-live scheduled for the end of this week. However, it’s about more than just schedules; it’s about priorities. If time and money were limitless, Dreamforce would be a no-brainer. I’ve yearned to attend since my introduction to the Salesforce ecosystem. But as an independent professional, I must consider the practicality of such a decision.

Moreover, my recent return from family vacations and international travel makes it infeasible to take another extended break. Realistically, my clients would find it hard to be forgiving if I disappeared again so soon.

Time with the family
Prioritising time with the family...

Community vs. Sales: Choosing Authentic Connections Over Sales Pitches

Dreamforce, at its core, is a sales event. While I’d relish the opportunity to rub shoulders with fellow trailblazers, I believe it’s more valuable to invest my finite time and money in community events. These events are led by trailblazers who share real-world insights and discuss tangible ways we can make a difference for our clients. It’s a departure from the typical Dreamforce fare, which focuses on the latest and greatest innovation for enterprise customers, with this years focus being AI.

My Dreamforce Experience: Maximizing Remote Participation

So, what will I be doing during Dreamforce this year?

I won’t physically attend, but thanks to Salesforce+, I can still immerse myself in the experience. Many key events are broadcast live or available for later viewing. I’ve highlighted a few key events on my schedule:

  • True to the Core: On Thursday at 2:30 PM EDT/7:30 PM UK, I’ll be watching this must-see event where Salesforce’s top executives answer questions and unveil significant updates. It’s where real gems like flow error messages and API integration user licenses have been revealed in the past.
  • Admin Preview for the Winter ’24 Release: Right after True to the Core, I’ll be diving into the Admin Preview to stay updated on the upcoming Salesforce release.
  • Admin Keynote and Dreamforce Keynote: If time allows, I’ll catch these keynotes. If not, I’ll rely on the numerous Salesforce community blogs that will summarize the key takeaways.
Dreamforce '23 on Salesforce+
Watching Dreamforce '23 via Salesforce+

Joining Watch Parties: Fostering Connections from Afar

I’m not alone in opting for remote Dreamforce participation. I plan to attend at least one Dreamforce ‘watch’ party, a fantastic way to bond with fellow trailblazers who also can’t be there in person. My choice is the Nonprofit and Education Virtual Dreamfest, hosted by the remarkable Barbara Christensen at the Salesforce Nonprofit User Group, Fort Wayne, on Thursday, September 14th, at 3 PM EDT/8 PM London time.

The FOMO Factor: Embracing FOMO with a Purpose

Am I missing out by not attending Dreamforce? Most probably. The fear of missing out (FOMO) will undoubtedly creep in this week. However, I am comforted by the knowledge that I’ll be actively contributing to a non-profit’s success through Salesforce and preparing for my trip in October. The sacrifice of Dreamforce attendance is a conscious choice to prioritize purpose over hype.

A Thoughtful Decision

In a world where resources are finite, making choices is a necessity. While I may not experience the grandeur of Dreamforce this year, my decision to focus on Nonprofit Dreamin’ and community events aligns with my values and professional priorities. To everyone who is attending Dreamforce, have an amazing trip, post lots on social media, and I hope to see many of you in Chicago!

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