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Birmingham SharePoint User’s Group

SharePoint Saturday Birmingham

Wow, so there’s been quite a bit of buzz in the SharePoint community here in Birmingham.  I have been here and there and everywhere.  Nevertheless, I wanted to post a quick update about the SharePoint Saturday in Birmingham on November 21, 2009.

Due to some circumstances, I will no longer be involved in the SharePoint Saturday event in Birmingham, AL in November.  This also means that this will not be am official Birmingham SharePoint User’s Group event.

I think that the SharePoint Saturdays are a great opportunity for the community and I continue to be involved in them as well as encourage everyone to attend so as to network and continue to expand their knowledge about SharePoint.  While the SharePoint Saturdays are free to individuals and wholly sponsored, the information presented is some of the richest available to the community, providing real world scenarios and solution approaches.  Not to mention the opportunities to meet others in your area who are working with SharePoint or interested in SharePoint.

There is considerable amount of work and coordination that goes into planning one of these events and the people who host them are working tirelessly to make sure the event does well and that attendees leave with something that they can apply to their every day work.

If you are still interested and want more information about the Birmingham SharePoint Saturday November 2009 event, please visit the website at: www.sharepointsaturday.org

Finding my Place in the SharePoint Community

For a while now, I have been trying to find my place in both my company and the SharePoint community.  At times it has seemed like more of a Mt. Everest than a small hill to find a spot where I would fit. There isn’t really a logical place for a graphic designer in the world of SharePoint.  I was not technical in my background. Although I did grow up with a Computer Science professor for a father. I guess I come by a desire to continue to learn and expand my horizons honestly. So where would I fit.  I kind of got thrown into the SharePoint world without a life preserver.  I was told to help brand our site and a client’s site, with no prior SharePoint work to go by.  So into the fray I jumped and I have tried really hard to not look back.

It was somewhat of a shock to me how much once I started learning this thing that people call SharePoint how much I found myself wanting to learn more and more.  So it was no big surprise to my company when I told them that I might want to do more SharePoint.

They were a little taken aback when I decided to start a SharePoint User Group in Birmingham and went about this without them.  Because as we all know, the only successful user groups are the ones who are run by people who are passionate about what they are running and when the group isn’t affiliated with a services company that only wants to use it as a sales pitch.  This has been more of a challenge than I thought.  It is hard to explain to management why I am unwilling to share all of my attendees information with them and why I won’t press people to do work with us. They are slowly coming around. It just takes some time.

Our user group has been slowly growing and we are starting to get more and more people intrested in speaking and sponsoring the group.  I will admit that it is one of the hardest things that I do in trying to get it all organized each month. I have a ton of out of the office on my own time work that I need to do each month and I find that I have to put the user group as more of a priority at times.

And now I am branching out and expanding my SharePoint boundaries once again.  In joining Twitter I have found a large group of like minded people who share a passion for what we do. The advent of the SharePoint Babes is great.  I think that this group of women have an important point of view that we will be able to share with our Community.  And having the opportunity to work with these SharePoint Babes to present a keynote/discussion group at SharePoint Saturday in the Ozarks is great!  I am looking forward to all the new people that I am going to meet in the next month at all the SharePoint Saturdays that I am going to attend.  I appreciate the opportunity that is being given to our community to share and present ideas and topics that we are each passionate about.

Thanks for taking me in and welcoming me to this great Community.  I am honored to be a part of it.

What a Busy Week Already

Wow, this week has been a whirlwind and it is only Tuesday night.  So far this week, I have travelled to Atlanta for the Atlanta SharePoint Users Group meeting and taught a SharePoint Designer Level 1 class at New Horizons training center.  It has been a SharePoint full week.

The drive to Atlanta was easy yesterday afternoon and much tougher on the way back to Birmingham.  There were some pretty nasty storms on the way back. I thought for a minute that I was going to get blown off the road.  But, I just kept on going and made it back. There was quite a bit of lightning and at one point I enjoyed quite a strobe light style show with the lightning and my windshield wipers.

Today’s class on SharePoint Designer was a really good one.  I had a great group of people who were attending the class. I was quite happy to mix a little more of some of my presentations in with the materials for the class.  It is also always a good time for me to promote the Bham SPUG.  I am always on the lookout for new recruits for my user group.

Let’s see, I am also working on some other projects at home this week.  I am working on a baby quilt for a friend. I am also working on an invitation design for one of my charity groups.  This one is for the VSA Arts of Alabama Art Partners event in August. My other big charity meeting for this week is my board meeting for the Children’s Dance Foundation.