Category: From the Squad

#DF18: Tips from the #GIFSquad

We have just over a month to go until #SalesforceOhana descends on San Francisco for a week of networking and learning at Dreamforce. Whether this is your 1st or 5th time attending the conference, the #GifSquad has put together some tips for you to make the most of your time.


“It’s exciting to pack your days full of sessions, but really try to attend those core to what you want to learn, and make sure to leave time to attend fun sessions like #AwesomeAdmin Lip Sync Battle!” Amy 

“Pace yourself. Schedule a few sessions you want to attend, areas you want to explore, things you want to do, but don’t forget to allow time to rest, recharge, and relax. There’s no shame in taking a mid-day nap in your hotel room.” Stacey

“Go with a goal in mind of what you want to learn and/or experience. Be extremely intentional in your session selection and strive to align with your organizations goals.” Justice

“Do AT LEAST one HoT (Hands On Training)! They are worth the entire conferenece IMO.” Melinda

“Start going thru the session listings NOW and bookmark them. When Agenda Builder goes live, it’s frenetic and you may miss out on getting a seat in a session you really wanted to see.” Amy

“Sessions are recorded and available. If you miss it, don’t worry.” Sam

**Several members of the GIFSquad are speaking this year at Dreamforce- be sure to look for us:


Little things, big impact

“You can save a few bucks on food if you’re coming on your own budget. Find breakfasts and dinners being hosted, they’re everywhere.” Bill

“Bring some creature comforts to get you through the long week….Emergen-C, granola bars, your fav protein shake, comfy slippers.” Melinda

“Bring MULTIPLE phone chargets. The smaller & thinner the better. You dont want to lose a chance to take a selfie with folks you admire in the community.” Bill

“I know it’s been said many times, but wear comfortable shoes. You’ll be walking. Alot. And standing. And you don’t want to miss a chance encounter with someone on your “must meet” list because you had to head back to your room early. Bonus tip: I also carry bandaids just in case my comfy shoes wear a blister.” Stacey

“Remember self-care. This is a large conference and it can get overwhelming for many people. Know your limits, and make yourself a priority.” Amy


“Try to arrive or stay at least one day after the conference. San Francisco has some amazing sites to see, and your chances of finding another #SalesforceOhana member to link up with is much higher during Dreamforce!” Amy

“I do a lot of networking at Dreamforce. That’s because going into Dreamforce I have a lot of questions. Questions for Salesforce product owners and managers, questions for vendors that I work with (or may work with in the future), questions for my peers who know products better than I do who I don’t see often. I will make a quick list of these and try to reach out to these people prior to Dreamforce to see if we can make a meetup during the week. (5 to 10 min talk?). We may not solve my question, but give context for a later discussion 2 or 3 weeks later. This is a great place to have a 1:1 with a product expert, Salesforce leader or a peer having the same issues as you!” Stuart

“You’ll be tired….just own it. Go to the happy hours and the parties, you’ll be sad if you missed a chance to hang, in real life, with the people you admire in our community.” Melinda

“You can sleep when you’re dead. See ALL the people!” Bill

“Make a list of #SalesforceOhana you want to meet prior to the big event, and reach out to them in someway prior to the conference to set up to let them know you’d like to meet!” Amy

“Be open to networking with new people in new spaces. This is a conference eclipsing 150,000+ attendees in one area. Step out of your comfort zone and attend events and meetups.” Justice

“If it’s your first Dreamforce, you’re going to be overwhelmed, and none of this advise is really going to resonate until you’re there. Don’t sweat it. Your second year will be better. And different.” Sam



“Swag. I love swag. I think i have an addiction. It could be a problem. I was like a swag whisperer in 2016. I would get tips from other attendees on where they got the best swag and I would go seek it out. I would enter in contests and talk my way into winning. I just was clicking on all cylinders. Don’t be like me. Let it go. Don’t get sucked in by swag. You can have a good Dreamforce without swag. It’s ok. That being said, I wonder where the best swag will be this year and I am sure there will be some chatter posting about where to find good swag.” Stuart

“Bring a fabric duffel bag that will rollup nicely into your carry-on for your trip out west. Fill it with swag for the ride home. I didnt wind up using mine last year, but it fit nicely in my bag anyway and didnt take up room so it worked out.” Bill



We want to hear from YOU! Tweet us your #Dreamforce18Tip!

See you in San Francisco, friends!









New Year, MOAR Ohana

If you are reading this, let me take a moment first of all, to THANK YOU for your support of the #GifSquad over the past year.

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By interacting with us, you soon found out we are so much more than GIF lovers. But, since we love GIFs, here’s a fav:

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In 2016, as a group, we decided to use our collective reach to give back to the Ohana we hold so closely to our hearts. We achieved this in 2 ways.

First, we set up shop and created some Salesforcey t-shirts, with proceeds benefiting the foundation. Thank you to all who purchased shirts. Because of your generosity, we raised close to $600 for the charity!

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The shirts are still available to purchase at any time, but we do have another fun fundraiser on the horizon, so keep watching for updates!

The second way we chose to give back in 2017 was to create a weekly series highlighting Ohana community members. We tagged this our #WeekOf series, and featured over 42 members of the Salesforce community. The goal was to feature some lesser known, or perhaps people who are less active on social media and give them a little introduction to you. Our process was an internal one, meaning most members of the GifSquad participated in nominating people. We are very happy with the global group of people we have featured, like Paarth Jolly, the WORLD’s youngest Developer Group Leader, Bonny Hinners, multi-certified Non-Profit expert, and Technical Architect (and Swifty), Shannon Howe. We hope you learned about some new and awesome Salesforcians in the process! ( Salesforcians a word? I’m sure I’ve seen it before….)

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For 2018, we have decided to switch things up a bit. While the group has a large network, we can’t know everyone in the global community who is up to great things. So, we are turning over our #WeekOf nominations to YOU, Ohana! The nomination form is now live on our site, here.

So, what makes a good #WeekOf Candidate? That’s up to you! Here are some general guidelines, but we have no “rules.” We just want to hear about awesome people doing awesome things!

  • Someone willing to help others in their quest for knowledge or support on Salesforce
  • Active in the community, either online or at their local events
  • Someone who believes in equality and is willing to support or stand up for those affected in the stuggle

Please note, while we will try our best, not all who are nominated will be featured.

So go ahead, we turn this process over to you now and can’t wait to meet those nominated!

Thank you again for all your support of the GifSquad, and we look forward to a fantastic 2018 of giving back to the Salesforce Ohana!

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Hurricane Harvey

Click to view USA Today article on Hurricane Harvey

So How bad is it?

The short answer is “very”. Prior to Harvey, only 2 other Category 4 hurricanes had made landfall in Texas’s Coastal Bend region. The most recent happened in 1961. The one before that, August of 1886. Harvey is literally like nothing the majority of Houstonians have ever experienced before. According to the National Weather Service  “Tropical Storm Harvey has broken the all-time Texas rainfall record from a tropical storm or hurricane.” Weather Channel meteorologist Greg Postel was quoted as saying “This could easily be one of the worst flooding disasters in U.S. history.” It’s estimated that Hurricane Harvey has dumped more than 11 trillion gallons of water on Houston alone. According to USA Today affiliate Weather 10, more than ten additional inches of rain could hit Houston by the time Harvey’s done.

It’s very bad.

So How Can I help?

Now. In any way you can. Publicly. Anonymously. Through a charity. Directly. NOW.

The need is great, urgent, and overwhelming. The good news being that there are dozens, if not hundreds, of places for you to contribute. Being both helpful and cautionary, The New York Times published a great article on “Where to Donate to Harvey Victims (and How to Avoid Scams)“.  Unfortunately, reading up before offering monetary contributions has become a MUST. Please, donate wisely.

When on a rescue boat, there isn’t anything better than brother’s hand.

In addition to the big players, (charities like United Way, the American Red Cross, AmeriCares, etc.) countless GoFundMe pages have been setup for individuals and families impacted by Harvey. One we’d like to draw your attention to specifically, is the GoFundMe page setup to help the family of the Salesforce Community’s very own, Megan Schultz.

Harvey left Megan, her wife Mary, and their 5 year old twin sons (and their dog), with nothing. They were high water rescued from their home. Besides the clothes they were wearing, a phone is all they have left. Any proceeds received that exceed the family’s needs will be donated to a disaster relief fund intended to help other #SalesforceOhana members in the Houston area.


Ohana Resources

Megan and Mary aren’t the only members of the Ohana whose lives have been impacted by Harvey. Doing what they do best, the fine folks at Salesforce are jumping in and lending a hand. Using Quip, they’ve created a centralized one-stop-Ohana-help-shop for:

  • Community Lead Recovery Efforts
  • Requests from the Ohana
  • Community Support
  • Distribution and Inventory Listing for Houston Developer & User Group Relief

Click here to visit the Hurricane Harvey – Community Ohana Relief Efforts Page

The fact that they’ve used Quip, means that if YOU know of Community Lead Recovery Efforts, if YOU have requests, and if YOU can offer support YOU can let people know by making additions to the page.


GIF Squad Giving

At this time, all proceeds from the sale of The GIF Squad’s #GifSquadForGood line of shirts will be donated to Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. Click here to visit our store!