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What was your Dreamforce take-away?

November 26, 2013 | Justin Gray | 1 Comment |

Whew! What a week!  As we all wind down from the whirlwind that is Dreamforce, let us reflect on all of its amazing take-aways. I cannot overstate that I got all there is to get from this event. I don’t believe anyone could. That’s why I’ve decided to pull together a list of favorites from the LeadMD staff who attended; most valuable lessons learned, extra special client interactions, and most insightful sessions.

“I had the privilege of meeting a former client. Although she hasn’t converted her new company into a LeadMD client YET, she gushed about the work Andrea and our team did. Seeing that she had enough confidence in what we do to sing our praises to her CEO and one of their top investors was inspiring.”

Jessica Miller
Marketing Services Manager


“Client experiences were really wonderful. It wasn’t just getting to put faces to names or seeing people I haven’t seen for months or even years, it was how eagerly current and even past clients took the time to share their success stories with LeadMD with others and introduce us to new marketers that can use our help. The best advocates are happy clients and it was so exciting to see that in action at Dreamforce.”

Andrea Lechner-Becker
VP – Marketing Services


“Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In” keynote had a lasting effect on my mind well after the speech. In particular, her point on male-to-female performance reviews is often guarded. Having managed multiple team members in different capacities, I know the importance of open & consistent communication to achieve key company milestones. I reflected deeply on interactions I had with my teams in the framework of one-on-one performance reviews. In earlier stages of my career, I believe I had been guilty of being more forthcoming and direct to male employees, as opposed to female team members. This was a disservice to the hard working and ambitious females who were eager to progress in their careers. Honest criticism is one of the single best tools I used in my professional development to strengthen areas of weakness; but I was reluctant on how it might be received.

As I matured, I altered my approach and experienced great success. While maintaining a constructive format, I found myself sugarcoating less and providing more direct advice. This had a positive effect; instead of pushing the individual employee further away, it brought us closer. Suddenly, the women leaders of the team were asking more advice on topics, pushing for instrumental change in the team, and progressively rounding out their previous weaknesses. I credit many of my greatest career highlights to the integral roles those strong women played in achieving hard fought team wins.”

Michael McEuen
Director of Marketing


“Dreamforce is great because you have three days of pure insanity filled with sessions, technology introduction, smart people running ragged and inspiring keynotes – and then Dreamforce rests on the fourth day. Thursday is always a day of focusing on something a little bit different and Doctors Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer and David Agus certainly filled that bill. If you didn’t have a chance to see this session, I truly believe it was the most important at Dreamforce, and they will be available soon online @ http://dreamforce.com. The overall message of this session was to know yourself – in other words, “self actualization.” You have to identify each day, what you want and what will enable happiness in your life – and you have to be prescriptive in this notion. If you’re showing up, doing the work, and going home – you’re doing it wrong. You absolutely MUST carve a path to happiness in your life and simply physiologically responding to life is not enough.

LeadMD is a company where you can literally choose your own destiny and if you are treating it like a “job” you simply aren’t leveraging this tool to its fullest. I truly believe that the careers that allow you to dream are the pinnacle of a search that many people participate in, but in which they rarely find a happy end. The amount of time you spend on that pinnacle is offset by the amount of value you add in contributing to that dream. For me, that comes in the form of production and responsibilities. There is no dream without doing and we attempt to find an intersection of dreaming (doing what you love) and doing (providing that dream to others) in everyone’s daily work life here. There are things this company needs, right now, that could be enhanced by your dreams and your happiness. We want you to feel open to achieving both – in fact, we need that. My biggest takeaway was that happiness isn’t earned (once I make $X or once I achieve Y). Happiness actually enables the successful journey.”

Justin Gray


As for me?  Well, I had lunch with a client who I had only conversed with over the phone until that day. As we sat chatting over lunch and cocktails, we talked about many things; the shortest part of the conversation was about business and the opportunity for new business. The bulk of the conversation was about each of us as people. Where we came from, who our family is and stories about our lives and past experiences…

So my take-away? An event like Dreamforce is meant to bring people together not only to learn about the latest and greatest in sales and marketing technologies, but also to learn more about each other and more from each other.  After all, we do business with people, not technology.


What was your Dreamforce take-away?

1 Comment

  1. Justin Gray Justin Gray on November 27, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    Great post Shauna! People are always the driving force in change and SFDC is certainly pitching a lot of it. There’s a great related Matt Heinz post about this as well: http://www.heinzmarketing.com/2013/11/what-b2b-experts-thought-dreamforce/

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