On Thursday 8th November, 24 Trailblazers from the Salesforce community will take to the floor to compete against each other, all to raise money for charity. The event is inspired by the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing and will take place at the iconic Troxy in London.
The event is organised by Partner Events Promotions (the brains behind other such illustrious events as Partner Charity Cricket and Partner Boxing) whose aim is to raise money for charity, create awareness and promote networking amongst the Salesforce community. They coupled up with Ballroom Dance Classes to create this Strictly style event, led by the amazing Michael Litke.
Kerry: I work at Accenture delivering Salesforce projects. I’m also a Salesforce MVP and co-organise and regularly attend Salesforce Community Conferences. I want to say a massive thanks to Accenture Technology for the time and support to take part.
Rebecca - I launched my own Salesforce recruitment company, Stride Consulting, in May this year. So essentially I match Salesforce professionals with great companies across consultancies, ISVs and end-users. I’m growing and learning every day and am loving every minute.
Kerry: I have certainly sat at home and mentally gone through the process of trying to work out if there is any way I can get on Strictly. Neither being a world class dancer, a household name, actor, journalist or sports professional is currently a barrier, but who knows! I never would have predicted this event would happen. There are so many opportunities that I have had working with Salesforce that I never could have predicted.
Rebecca: The last few weeks have been an absolute dream for me. It all started when I was browsing LinkedIn and came across Kerry’s post asking for people to attend auditions for Partner Strictly and thought it could not have been more perfect for me. I love a good boogie, simply adore the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing and would give anything to take part. I’m also keen to meet more people in the ecosystem and explain what I do, so I jumped at the chance to be involved and here we are.
Kerry: Dance is so good because it stretches you both physically and mentally. It needs full focus and therefore demands that you step away from anything else that is going and just dance. You have to be present and in your body, making it very mindful. There are times in my life where I have not been physically able to take part in something like this so while I can, I will. I am extremely grateful for this opportunity.
Rebecca: I agree, dance is a fantastic way to keep physically and mentally healthy. Although as we are both doing Jive there is very little time to be mindful. It’s important that we all find time to do things that bring us joy and dancing is certainly one of mine. It has also been a great bonding experience and I am thrilled to come away from this experience with some new friendships.
Kerry: All the couples were split into 4 dance styles and each group has a professional teacher to show them the ropes. This in itself has been great and a real pleasure to work with people that are not only good at what they do, but love doing it - and the passion is infectious. There have been a couple of sessions where either we or our partners can’t attend. In those cases we run through the routine with Eddie Slattery, our instructor. To say that there is some showboating is an understatement, but I wouldn’t want it any other way.
Rebecca: Training has been more demanding than I first expected. I think as a group we picked up the initial steps very quickly, which almost gave us a sense of false hope. The weeks have flown by and suddenly we are just days away from the big night. I am very proud of all of us and think Eddie has done an amazing job. My biggest fear now is just forgetting it all, falling over or both.
Kerry: I am definitely seeing parallels between taking part in Partner Strictly and what I do for a day job working at Accenture and delivering Salesforce capability for clients. We have needed to think on our feet, adapt to changing conditions, get to know our clients and deliver to them whilst staying focused on the overall objective.
Rebecca: I’m not sure I can say dancing is like recruitment. Although I’m constantly spinning, running around and trying to make people happy. I also prefer both things whilst wearing sequins so maybe they are similar after all! On a serious side, it has been a fantastic challenge to learn a new skill and understand more about this amazing ecosystem and how so many different people belong in it.
Each dancer has a fundraising target which counts towards our overall competition score so please help us by donating. Stepping on to a dance floor in front of the community of people you work with is pretty scary!
You can help us get to our fundraising targets but clicking the links -
You can find all the dancer’s pages here.
SportsTraider is a charity that helps young people fulfil their sporting aspirations. Can you imagine not being able to participate in an activity simply because you don’t have a pair of suitable shoes? In many cases it’s simply a case of redistributing clothes and equipment, from people that don’t need it, to those that do.
This amazing charity was started by Lance Haggith who was recognised for his work in 2010 by being awarded BBC Sport Personality of the Year, Unsung Hero. In the last 9 years they have provided children with specially adapted wheelchairs to allow them to take part in sports, provided tents and equipment for unprivileged children to have a holiday, and redistributed 487 tons of clothes and equipment.
SportsTraider believes in leveling the playing field and giving all young people access to physical activity no matter what their history. Making this a great choice of beneficiary as it shows what we can do when we put our mind to it. Salesforce have lead the way by implementing the 1-1-1 model from the beginning, its great to see so many other organisations in the ecosystem also do the same.
Tickets for the event are available to the public. A £30 donation to one of the dancers gets you a ticket in the unreserved balcony seating, with fantastic views of the showcase.
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Before we go, here’s a little poetic treat from a fellow Jiver, Mitchell Round...