Who will be the EMC Elect of 2016?

Who will be the EMC Elect of 2016? Well only those that nominate can decide.  EMC_Elect_Nominate

It will the 4th year for EMC Elect, and its hard to believe another year of the program has passed. But ut has and with recent announcments 2016 is shaping up to be the most compelling year for EMC.

And I believe the EMC Elect of 2016 are going to be ones with the exclusive access to tell that story, minus the spin and the FUD.

Nominations close on the 30th November at Midnight EST (US).

Do not let your favorite EMC knowledgable peer miss this exciting oppurtunity to join a very vibrant Technical community.

And to the EMC Elect of 2015, even though the sun is beginning to set on 2015, I want to thank you for the tremendous passion and commitment you have given to this community. Once EMC Elect, always EMC Elect. I sincerely thank you on behalf of EMC and the EMC community who are the true beneficiaries of the erudite content you share passionate and curious technology geeks! I really appreciate you all and it is an honour to faciliate the program.

And the very best of luck to all those nominated for the EMC Elect of 2016.

Now don’t delay, time is short. :Nominate:

While I’ve been away

Just an update for the few who are wondering where I have been.

Well if you follow me on twitter you know I have been travelling a bit. VMWorld US 2015 was intense and if I get the time I will write up how that went. New York, attending the CSE 2015 conference asa panelist was fun and I also  learned a lot while I was there. Again, if I ever get time I will flesh that exprerience out on a post. One thing I have been doing that is a completeley out of my depth adventure is podcasting. It’s not as easy as others make it look. But I really enjoy it. I have kicked off the EMC Elect podcast Tech sElect. You cann appriase what we have done with it by listening on Soundcloud or iTunes. For your listening pleasure I have embeded the firsto of the podcasts here:

Thanks to @Erichagstrom and his go pro, you can watch and listen here:

While doing all this, I ‘ve challenged myself further and begun a Diploma in Data Business which is the beginning of a Masters. With that being a dad, with school runs in force etc and atteempting to have a life is currently very interesting.

One thing I will say, is that putting the podcast together, the Diploma course and conversations on my business travel have made me reflect on the IT sector. My self and another genlteman, who shall remain nameless, but is in the same Industry none the less, are planning to build out a podcast that facilitates the groundforce customers in telling thier stories and what they see in the industry. Its a work in progress. But we want to give real customers a voice, vendor agnostically, to hear the truth about IT as it really is. No hacks nor punditry. And to be honest, it may not even see the light of day. Its not as if I don’t have enought to do already. and VMWorld Europe looms large indeed.

I had to force myself to make this post, but am glad I did. Even if no one reads it, it helps me galvanise my thoughts. Safe travels, all, until my next post.



EMC Community Appreciation Event @ EMC World 2015 with very cool door prizes.

Well it is EMC World time again and we are throwing a customer appreciation event! What the heck, admit it to yourself, its your party for being an incredible member of the ECN community! And you deserve to be celebrated. Without you there would not be such a vibrant community.

If you popped over from the tweetvite then you know there are door prizes and you want the details !

And they are very cool prizes!  You will not want to miss the party for your chance to win one of these!


So are you salivating? Are you keen to celebrate with your fellow Community members in Vegas.

Then do not forget to “Register” for the party! Can’t wait to see you there.

Wrapping up 2014: A challenging but fulfilling year (part 2)

Well I would be remiss if I did not wrap up things talking about EMC Elect. This program, holds a special place in my heart because it was a dream I was able to see made real. Again this was not my doing, it was the EMC Elect community members that made it happen. And boy did they!

Again, Lets set out what the EMC Elect Program is:

At its heart, EMC Elect recognizes what our influencers did over the last calendar year. And this distinction thanks them for what they did then. But by recognizing these advocates the distinction of EMC Elect empowers them. And because of that recognition they get to see a little bit more under the covers of EMC.

It’s the premier advocacy recognition program at EMC, and its is a runaway success externally.

2014 has been our best year in engagement, briefings and yes fun when it came to the Elect. While the EMC Elect are technically “the cool kids” its not about being popular. Influential, yes, but popularity is not whats sought. And this group is influential. Just look at the following they have.

80 Members, with a collective 50,000 followers on twitter and a social reach across multiple platforms of 500,000. That’s a big audience.

They average 27,000 social media impressions per day.

And at major conferences  like EMC World, VMWorld its 500,000 social media impressions per day.  This has a major impact.

The total EMC Elect at EMC World 2014 impressions  was 5,500,000!

Yes the typical EMC Elect membe would tweet much more than the average EMC World attendee.

Elect _at_World

By comparison the Total EMC Elect at EMC World 2013 impressions was 700,000. So clearly this program is growing in scale.

In Total the EMC Elect garnered 9% share of the Social Media voice At EMC World 2014.

At the EMC Mega Launch in London this year, the #EMCElect was the  #2 hash tag, overtaking the other EMC product hash tags. The had a social media impression number of 2.2 million. Clearly it was the influencers who had the ear of those interested in EMC Mega Launch. Yes #EMCElect certainly was popular and had influential metrics at VMWorld in US and Barcelona. Everywhere the EMC elect are present they have an impact.

Yet we have to remind ourselves of who the people that are called EMC Elect really are.

They are essentially humble heroes and heroines. They are real people with real jobs. But are passionate about community and collaboration and very curious about technology. But it is their community aspect which makes them so influential. They represent their peers, and what they learn they share (when an NDA does not get in the way 😉 ). They are not cheerleaders for EMC by any stretch of the imagination. They give feedback to EMC, not all of it positive, but all of it is candid. And they disseminate what they discover with their community.  As EMC Elect they were able to attend private briefings, roadmaps online and in person, have the benefit of a private EMC Elect community , and have exclusive alpha and beta testing offerings. All of which they put to good use for the benefit of themselves and their community. And that’s why they hold an influential position.

When Matt Brender and I got this program started, we honestly did not know how big this was going to be. But fundamentally we knew that the Elect program would empower the right people and influencers for the benefit of the EMC community as we said at the time in this impromptu video.

And at its core that’s what the program continues to do.

I’d also like to say that 2015, while capitalizing on the roaring success we had with Elect, we are going to bring it back to its fundamental basics. It’s about the community. And we intend to improve the program refocusing on this. We will still do what we have always done very well, in fact even better than before. We will keep those exclusive opportunities coming for the EMC Elect. But as well as making big social noise we will be focusing on further engagement, building stronger ties with the EMC community. And we are going to go further to empower the EMC Elect members. I won’t give too much away as to how yet. You will see it roll out in 2015.

Now if this sounds interesting to you and you’d like to be involved in the EMC Elect, or could see one of your peers fitting in nicely to this, there is still time. Nominations for the EMC Elect of 2015 are still open. But you’d better hurry, nominations close on the 31st December, 2014.

So don’t delay, nominate today. 

And that concludes my wrap up, at least from my professional perspective. And I have so many people to thank. The EMC Elect of course, Sean Thulin and Dennis Smith particularly. Todd Forsyth, Brace Rennels, Chris Gardner. A special thanks to Mary Kilgallen as well, who is the reason why EMC Elect works at all.  Another special thanks goes to Rachael Foster, another lady that is an unsung heroine for the program. And lest I forget, I owe a debt of gratitude to Tommy Trogden and Brian Carpenter for their unwavering support and keeping me focused on the community.

What I love about community is that I have met so many people, who have helped, me and I am forgetting to mention so many. But I have to conclude this post. They know who they are anyway.

I am looking forward to this break. A lot was achieved in 2014. But there is much more to do in 2015. I look forward to it with great anticipation.

For those that celebrate it, Happy Christmas! For those that don’t Happy Holidays! And a Happy New Year for good measure.

Wrapping up 2014: A challenging but fulfilling year (part 1)

Well it is that time of the year, where once again I reflect on things. I am getting this done early because quite frankly come Friday the 19th of December, 2014, I am going dark and on my Christmas holidays. Some proper family time, good cheer, overindulgence and some much needed down time and reflection is the prescription I am following.

During the drafting of this post I realised it would have to come in two parts. I dislike writing overly long posts when I don’t have to. So this is part 1 🙂  This one focuses on the Ask the Expert Program.

As I am getting used to my role in EMC IT following my departments re-org from Customer Services, I feel obliged to wrap up some numbers on how well the EMC Ask the Expert has done in 2014. These are early numbers mind you, going from the start of the year to December 10th, but as the program takes a hiatus from the 19th, the discrepancy of the final result should not be a major difference. I recently posted some stats on the program. EMC Ask the Expert: a little more insight. And I posted the 2013 results which can be seen in this post: Happy Holidays, belated Merry Christmas and a recap of 2013 and into 2014!

Its just amazing that since its inception back in 2012, the program has had phenomenal growth. Its really no longer a project, its a genuine service provided by EMC online. and its free. This is all down to the amazing community participation of EMC Community Network members. This program would have none of the success it has had without the EMC community backing it. The accolades and praise for this success is theirs. I am delighted to have facilitated it. To me I was its trustee.

So before I share the numbers, let me define the program direct from our executive summary:


And this is what our numbers look like for participation in 2014 (at least up to December 10th, 2014)


  • 145,561 page views. 16% increase on 2013
  • ~ 13,232 page views per month
  • 92,276 visits. 29% increase on 2013
  • ~ 8388 visits per month
  • 62,487 unique visitors. 34% increase on 2013
  • ~5680 unique visitors per month

And as you can see primarily anonymous users, indicating these events are being found via web search. These numbers account for 2.5% of all the EMC Community Network traffic in 2014 (up to December 10th) , which itself looks like 6,000,000 views this year. Indeed this program takes a fair chunk of the ECN traffic. It says a lot about the program.

And when we look at how long people stay in the Ask the Expert Community?

28.7% of visitors stay from 5-10 minutes, with a further 13.2% staying from 30 minutes to an hour. That means a lot of people find this community via web search and stay a good while to search the content. And they keep coming back.

It is amazing to think, that when this program started in 2012, we had 3 experts and one program manager, all from customer services. Now The stake holder list has grown rather substantially.

They now include:

  • EMC Total Customer Experience Team
  • EMC Global Services
  • EMC Product Marketing
  • EMC Technical Leadership Academy
  • EMC Elect
  • EMC Inside Sales
  • EMC Customer Services

It’s a program that has had humble beginnings, and now is a critical service online for EMC. It’s been a pleasure to lead it, work with amazing experts, community managers, customers and partners. And this has to include the Multilingual teams. The local language Ask the Expert events in Chinese contribute a lot to the metrics shown here. and events are growing in number in local languages such as Japanese, Spanish and Portuguese. Just look the global heat map to see the interaction taking place


It’s been an amazing three years building and taking the lead for this program. I have learned a lot, made superb connections I would normally not have been able to do in a traditional customer support role. I have mentioned plenty on that before. It’s not been easy either, but I learned quickly to let the community tell you whats a hot topic. They will anyway. I learned to listen, be ambitious, to continue a maniacal focus on supporting our customers and a thing or two about EMC products 🙂 And I thank all those people, in EMC and outside EMC for making this program what it is.

In  2015, I will be focusing on EMC Community Network Forums, helping redefine the communities and improve the overall experience. Its a big project and I will be sharing more on that as I dive in next year. I am still heavily involved in the EMC Elect program management. Nothing has changed there in any way. I will still be consulting on the Ask the Expert program but my colleague, and my current joint program manager partner on this,  Roberto Araujo will be the primary contact on the program. It’s been great working with Roberto over the last ten months on the program and he has definitely been a great partner in this program and done some great hard work supporting it.

So thus concludes part 1 of this blog. I’ll be posting more tomorrow to round out my end of year roundup. Thanks for reading and listening to what is entirely my perspective. And feel free to comment. I welcome any feedback you want to provide.

Part 2 will deal with my perspective on the EMC Elect program over 2014.

EMC Forum in Dublin, December 2nd. Why attend?

If you do have the oppurtunity to attend the EMC Forum Tour, arriving in Dublin on December 2nd, make sure you do.

First of all its free!

Second of all its got two track of amazing content, one for technical and one for business, both with awesome content.

“The EMC Forum Tour is specifically designed for IT managers and executives looking for insights to cloud solutions and opportunities to network and share with peers. It is also ideal for technical architects, storage administrators, and infrastructure and information security managers/directors.”

If you are  curious about how Hybrid Cloud, Flash Storage, or Big Data redefine IT, you need to attend this Forum.

And you’ll get to network with an amazing number of your peers who are Partners and customers of EMC.

It’s  a jam packed day, but well worth it for the insight into EMC’s perspective on Hybrid Cloud, Data Lakes and Software defined strategies.

Don’t miss out.

For your free Registration : http://emc.im/TourIE

Don’t delay, the 2nd of December fast approaches.

My #VMWorld Europe experience representing #EMC (part 3)

Well I intended this post to be done on the final day of the conference. However between packing and getting work done and the valued conversations to have, as well as a flight to catch, it never happened.  So it is now written from my home office in Bantry, by the Atlantic ocean rather than the Mediterranean sea 🙂

I wanted to wrap the conference by pointing out the announcements that were made throughout the week. But I found this summary and point you to it now. Its quite informative but brief.

It is entitled VMWorld 2014 Europe – Announcements.  Thanks to Michael Otey.

For EMC related stuff regarding VMWorld you can go to our Everything VMWare at EMC Community.

The main reason for my attendance, along with my colleagues, Dennis Smith and Sean Thulin was to inform and remind people that the EMC Elect Nominations are open and to encourage nominations.

We were also there to highlight those EMC Elect members who were attending the conference to show case what EMC Elect members do that gets them the accolade. And we did just that by highlighting their sessions via the social channels, and getting some face time on camera with all of the EMC Elect in attendance.

In due course we will be editing the footage and sharing it on the EMC Elect Community.

Conferences are a lot of fun, that is true, but in equal measure, and probably more so, they are hard work. You have commitments while you are there for the business. Your real job still exists and does not wait so it can be a real headache to juggle it all. And it is important to note that the value of attending a technical conference from a networking and professional relationship building point of view. It is an invaluable resource to make that personal connection, both for your own brand and the business. That is something Sean, Dennis and I as part of the EMC Elect Management team strive to point out out time and again.

EMC Elect is in fairness one of many advocacy programs out there. Each has their value. In EMC we are continuing to stress the EMC Elect program benefits to the business and the EMC Community of peers. Thankfully for us, even though we enjoyed attending the conferences, we are glad to see that VMWorld Europe 2014  is the final tier 1 conference, with a heavy EMC Elect presence.  This gives us the opportunity to focus on promoting and developing the program inside EMC. We’ll also be planing and preparing the EMC Elect Program for 2015.   Lots to do, busy as ever.

In any event its been a very successful conference for the EMC Elect. Its been a learning curve for us too and we will certainly be using what we learned to improve our conference  facilitation of the EMC Elect in the future. In the mean time I have a simple ask of those you who read my blog. Please nominate someone, or yourself for the EMC Elect program. Help us recognize those people who live and breath community participation, engagement and advocacy of EMC.

EMC Ask the Expert: a little more insight


So I was rather inspired and yes informed following attending the Ask the Experts vBloggers session. The panelists were Chad Sakac, Duncan Epping, Eric Sloof, and the MC was Matt Cowger. So yeah it had some good EMC Elect representation 🙂

They shared their best practices on blogging and the methodologies they used to ensure they blogged frequently. It was nice to hear that blogging was challenging for them and to learn what they did to ensure they remain consistent in it.

One thing that struck a chord with me was something Chad said about sharing things we do. Often we feel we are going to violate IP stuff by sharing but often the information is already in the public domain anyway. So taking that suggestion on board I decided to share something more abut a program I run at EMC called Ask the Expert. Yes I have blogged about it before and for those that know the program forgive me for defining it again for other readers who might be new to my blog.

Ask the Expert (ATE) is an online event series in which technical subject matter experts drive public dialogue and engagement with community members about specific EMC product and solution topics, though building high-value content with broad use and longevity. These simple and quick to organize events rely on timely topics, credible hosts, and a collaborative environment while adapting to your platform of preference. ATE events are hosted in multiple languages for a local or global audience.

So thats the definition. But it has dawned on me that I have been sharing the phenomenal success of this program only with my upper management and team,  not the community at large, who are actually the beneficiaries.

So who are the beneficiaries of this program? Well this is how we see it inside the business:

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 12.22.01 PM


They are the Customers, EMC and the Experts who engage.

This is a really successful program and is widely engaging EMC Customers, partners and employees.

  • From January to August of this year we have had Ÿ143,366 page views.
  • In that time period alone there have been 92,710 visits to the site. And  61,820 were unique visitors to the site.
  • We are averaging 11,500 + visits per month, and 7,727 unique visitors per month.
  • Amazingly Ÿ79 % of unique visits were through a browser search.
  • 29% of those visitors interact with the site for a period of 10 -30 minutes.
  • 13% of the visitors interact with the site for a period of 30- 60 minutes.

To me these stats show how valued the content is on the EMC Community Network for this program. People love the interaction and it gets a lot of attention. It also indicates a there is a lively community that want to have those technical discussions.

So thats what i wanted to share. Let me know your thoughts on this if you have any. I ‘d appreciate any feedback you have.

Oh Yes,  I suppose I should share where you’ll find the space. Its the Ask the Expert Community on the EMC Community Network. For those of you familiar with that community, you’ll se its had a makeover to make it easier to interact.

Drop by and enjoy the content there. Now back to VMWorld. Final post coming out shortly before I fly out today 🙂

My #VMWorld Europe experience representing #EMC (part 2)

This post will tell the legend of Will Quinn 🙂   More on that later. Its day 2 at VMWorld Europe and the conference is in full swing. Plenty of information and sessions have been completed  and more to come. There is so much going on here its hard / nay impossible to keep up with it all. Thankfully all of the sessions will be shared online.

From an EMC Elect perspective today Chad Sakac, came to VMWorld and shared some great things on Software Defined. Chad is always interactive, seeking questions and possibly sharing a little too much on whats coming down the track from EMC 🙂 But Chad believes in sharing for the conversation. He’s a great example of community advocacy.


And Chad wasn’t the only EMC Elect member giving a briefing today. Well Chad is doing a series of them actually.

But Jonas Rosland and Matthew Cowger gave a briefing on scripting and programming cloud automation. They kept it very interactive and stressed it was not a marketing session. And it was in no way. It was very informative and gave very good best practices for coding.




I’ll be attending more sessions in the afternoon. And am looking forward to the Ask the experts event where Chad is one of the panelists. They are always fun and informative.

And now to the legend of Will Quinn. Yes Mr Quinn and many others with the help of Erica McDonald and the man in the shadows Steve Knight, threw an amazing Customer Appreciation Event. The venue was amazing, and the whole event was a wild success. Will and team did a tremendous job. It was the biggest customer appreciation event EMC has done in Europe. So Will Quinn is now the Cool events /party guy 🙂 Kudos Will.




I’ll post more tomorrow, keeping  it brief enough. it is worth mentioning we, Sean Thulin, Dennis Smith and myself are recording footage, live from the VMworld show floor and environs. We are getting together with EMC Elect members present here and recording their perspectives of VMWorld and what part of being in the EMC Elect community is all about. We’ll be sharing that in due course.