Wed, 25 July 2018
Today on the Salesforce Admins Podcast we’ve got Mary Kellum, Sales and Marketing Technology Manager at AlienVault, to find out how being voluntold has helped her shape her career.
Join us as we talk about how members of the community voluntelling Mary to do things she would’ve never tried has helped her to do more than she ever thought possible.
You should subscribe for the full episode, but here are a few takeaways from our conversation with Mary Kellum.
Getting voluntold into becoming a Salesforce Admin.
Mary started out getting certified as an accountant. “My goal was to support my daughter and give her the things I couldn’t have,” Mary says, “but once she went to college and started supporting herself I was like, ‘Now what do I do?’” She started as a customer service agent working in Access, but when her department merged with the sales department who were on Salesforce, she was voluntold to start helping out the Admin.
“The Admin at the time decided, ‘Oh, you’re perfect, you can do this, you’re going to help me,’” Mary says. She learned a lot from the experience and when that person left, she became the solo Admin (along with a lot of other responsibilities). She decided to see what working in Salesforce could do for her career and ended up getting a new job as a Salesforce Admin at 3M.
Learning by trial and error.
Mary was hired to merge three instances together. “On a Friday I had 95 users, and by Monday I had 200,” she says. She had to ramp up fast and learn everything she could, but it was in the days before Trailhead and the Trailblazer Community as we know it now. “I had to go by trial and error, making a lot of mistakes and learning from them,’ Mary says.
The instance continued to grow, so eventually, Mary needed to hire a Junior Admin. That person just happened to have a connection to Stephanie Herrera, who convinced her to meet up. “I made my daughter go with me because I didn’t know if she was a stalker or a murderer or something, and she made her daughter come with her because she didn’t know me,” Mary says. They hit it off, and Mary found herself at the first Women in Tech meeting.
The power of the Women in Tech community.
At that first Women in Tech meeting, Mary met Tami Esling who was volunteering for group study sessions and teaching a 201 class. When Mary got more involved, Tami told her that she needed to teach her own class. She got 201 certified and became a session leader. “I didn’t know I loved to teach, but I do love to teach,” she says, “and that opened up doors for me as well.” She also started presenting, and the community has helped her to develop and hone those skills.
“One of the reasons I love to do what I do is you get to see the light bulb go off, you get to the see the connections made,” Mary says, “I get to see the women stand taller because they have that confidence in their abilities and their skills that they can do this, even if you were a mom for twelve years.”
In her current position as a Salesforce Manager at AlienVault, she leads a team of three Admins. “It’s a homegrown instance, so I’m trying to get it back to where it needs to be,” she says. Mary loves working with a team at a new company, however, because she doesn’t just get to train the Admins, she also gets to introduce them to the community.
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