5 Steps to a Salesforce Career Transition

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copyright Ruth Black

We’re wrapping up another year and it’s time to look forward. I’ve celebrated with friends who have made #Trailhead Ranger just in time for the end of the year, and friends who are setting goals to accomplish new learnings on Salesforce’s free online learning tool – Trailhead.

Want to make a move in 2018 to Step up your Salesforce Career? Here’s my 5 steps.

  1. Assess Thyself.

The best moves start with an intentional goal. What do you love? What are you good at? Where do your passions and talents intersect?

Take this Career Development Online Trail  for a comprehensive overview of Salesforce career paths. Interested in making the move to Consulting? Read this blog on things to think about when transitioning from Admin to Consultant. What about Business Analyst? Here’s a 20-minute Dreamforce presentation on Think Like an Analyst.

2. Ask for Specific Connections

Once you’ve got a specific goal in mind, it’s easier to ask for connections from people in your network. “Can you introduce me to a digital services group in Baltimore that needs a Salesforce admin?” Often people I meet or know will say “I’m interested in anything” but it’s actually counterproductive if you’re looking for an intro from someone. The more specific the ask, the better I can mentally scan my network for a good introduction – and the stronger the case will be to actually make that e-intro.

3. Start Engaging in Community (and Gain Visibility as a bonus)

In today’s connected world, folks want some assurance of a known entity. So once you have goal #1 in mind – try to start dipping your toe into the water in that ecosystem. It might be the Salesforce Trailblazer Community, or Twitter, or LinkedIn. Making a career move is easier once people know who you are. But don’t think you need to reach everyone, and wear yourself out being everywhere all at once! Pick once channel – and choose to engage, comment, post – once a week. That’s enough to get you started.

4. Keep Learning

There are a ton of online resources to meet your next career goal. Start with Trailhead. It’s free, and has trails for both Salesforce technical skills, and soft skills like Manage the Salesforce way and Public Speaking.

5. Get Certified

A young woman I know wants to make the move to full-time consultant from admin. She’s got rock-solid technical skills including Salesforce, but her administrative assistant title doesn’t show it. The quickest way to gain credibility is getting certified. The exams are no joke (there are study groups – including those led by volunteers from Amplify – or start your own!) but they are worth it to quickly underscore your skills.

Megan Himan has over fifteen years experience in the nonprofit sector and over ten years working on the force.com platform. She has a unique combination of deep technical skills paired with an ability to strategically convene groups, coach executives and leadership through transitions, and execute on project deliverables. She is Founder & Principal of BrightStep Partners - solutions with strategy for nonprofit success. In September 2017, she was named a Salesforce MVP.

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