We’ve been introducing you to some of our fantastic women in technology leaders through a regular 'Day in the Salesforce Life' feature. Today, we have a special edition featuring Kristy Merson, Solution Engineer, who has been with Salesforce for over a year now, but wanted to share what a typical day was like when she first started - basically an overview of her on-boarding experience, as she was immersed into the #SalesforceOhana.
Visit our careers site to check out current openings, and to find out more about our culture. But in the meantime, over to you, Kristy...
In the first few of months of my Salesforce career I was encouraged to spend the bulk of my time learning. Salesforce promotes “defending your time to learn” and as such, at least half of every day for my first 3 months was dedicated to study, obtaining certifications and presenting to others in the company until I was ready to work with customers on my own. Here is a typical day from that period:
06:30: The “wake-up phase” begins. I love my sleep and was always prone to hitting snooze a few times too often, so I use an app that wakes me gradually over the course of 30 minutes. I like to take things slowly in the morning and so I spend a few minutes reviewing emails and catching up on the news before getting up.
07:30: I am a huge coffee-lover and although East London offers me a great selection of cafés to choose from, I prefer to buy the beans and grind them myself each day for an ultra-fresh press. Besides, if I’m still feeling a bit groggy, a loud coffee grinder is a surefire way to perk me up!
08:00: I’m very lucky to live a short distance from Salesforce Tower so I walk to and from work. Having only moved to London a few years ago, I still feel like a tourist every so often and I marvel at my favourite places each and every day along my ‘commute’: Columbia Road, Brick Lane, Spitalfields..
08:30: This morning I’ve been invited to shadow one of our Master Architects and Account Executives at a customer meeting. I am encouraged to join my peers and superiors in meetings as often as possible in order to learn firsthand. On the way to the meeting, we review the customer’s specific challenges and discuss how we think Salesforce can best help them accelerate their growth.
10:30: After a great meeting, we head back to the office and formulate our plan to build a prototype based on what the customer has shared with us. As a Solution Engineer, my primary role is to translate business needs into solutions using the Customer Success Platform.
11:30: Our team is growing rapidly and a talented colleague from a different department is preparing to interview to become a Solution Engineer through our internal transfer program. She’s asked a couple of us to watch her rehearsal and provide feedback - we happily oblige. The Ohana Culture at Salesforce is unlike any I’ve experienced before - this is a safe place where colleagues support and promote your endeavours and celebrate your achievements. Giving honest feedback is a key tenet of one of our integral values - ‘Trust’.
12:30: Women in Tech is an extremely important topic for Salesforce and in honour of the talented women in her extended team, one of the Area VP’s hosts a Quarterly lunch. Today just happens to also be a special occasion, so we’ve chosen SushiSamba on the top floor of Salesforce Tower to celebrate. At the lunch, I am thrilled to meet so many new colleagues: Account Executives, other Solution Engineers and Specialists, including one from SteelBrick CPQ, a recent addition to the Salesforce portfolio. It’s such a pleasure to interact with so many skilled people from such different backgrounds and hear their stories (especially when food is involved)!
13:30: I return to my desk with a full belly and take an hour to study for my upcoming Platform App Builder Exam. Salesforce offers certifications so that individuals can demonstrate their abilities on the platform and employers recognise these as ways to ensure an applicant knows their stuff! Solution Engineers must hold a minimum of three and this is the last one on my list. Because I tend to be a more tactile learner, I use Trailhead as a study tool for its “watch, then do” format.
14:30: Another way I get to learn is hands-on, by helping my teammates customise the Salesforce systems they’ll be showing their customers. This afternoon, the customer is an Investment Bank and I’ll spend the rest of my day building a demonstration, something I love to do!
17:30: The day isn’t quite over yet - just before leaving the office, I scan my calendar to review what’s on tomorrow and make sure I haven’t over-committed my time. There is a lot going on in a company as fast moving as ours and with all of these great opportunities, the tendency is to accept every invitation. I use the last 10 minutes of my day to reassess and ensure I choose only the most relevant ones for me.
I often look back at my early days at Salesforce and think how pivotal those on-boarding experiences were to setting me up for a successful career. It's been a whirlwind year, but I'm looking forward to the next one, and many more to come!
If this sounds like a place you’d like to work, you’re in luck because we’re always hiring. Learn more about joining the #SalesforceOhana at salesforce.com/ukcareers