If I had to choose only one blog I could follow in the Microsoft Business Applications ecosystem, it would be Steve Mordue’s blog.
Why this blog? Because you’ll learn more about the true business of BizApps in Steve’s blog than you would from reading all the partner channel materials MS puts out there.
It’s not just the unfiltered opinions and provocative comments from Steve that make the content unique. He manages to get Microsoft leaders like Charles Lamanna or Ryan Cunnigham speak openly about product roadmap and business strategy whenever he has a chat with them. It’s the kind of material you couldn’t hear from anywhere else – at least not without an NDA.
When MVPs used to get together
One unfortunate impact that COVID has had on the Microsoft MVP program is that our annual MVP Summit events have gone virtual. Even though the world is slowly opening up to physical events again, at the same time the world economy is sinking. This has pushed even the biggest tech corporations like Microsoft to announce cuts on their internal travel, training and event budgets. This means the next Summit, which will be my 10th, is probably done over Teams again.
It’s better than nothing, of course. The Microsoft product team members do put in effort to share their plans with the MVPs and are open to receiving feedback from us, since the protective shield of the NDA agreement covers both digital and physical worlds. Making things digital can also help scale the amount of tech content that can be made available as well as the means through which to consume it.
What the virtual events cannot in any meaningful way compensate for is the lack of informal interactions between MVPs. When you can’t go grab a drink with the smartest people in the business together at JOEY Bellevue, a large part of the Summit is wiped away. Sure, the product group interactions are valuable, but the MVP-to-MVP interactions are priceless.
No, you can’t replicate this in the virtual Summits. When you’re first sitting 6-8 hours alone in front of your computer, from 6pm onwards after your normal working day, staring at the Teams screen – trust me, you’re in no mood for “virtual drinks” after that.
Events quickly turn into non-events due to the lack of any changes in the physical surroundings. No travel costs, no jetlag, only a little loss of billable work during the week – it’s all very productive, to the point where you start asking yourself: why did I ever consider this “fun”? It sure helps to contribute to the feeling of being constantly tired.
Time to move forward again
You shouldn’t become too bitter about things not being what they used to be. The older you get, the more stuff like this is going to come at you every single day. You don’t have to like it, and you certainly are entitled to feel what you feel about it. That’s where our entitlements pretty much end, though.
Choosing how we react to change is pretty much the essence of life – and business as well. This is an area where both me and Steve seem to have similar ideology that drives our behavior. If you know the only certain thing in life (and business) is constant change, it’s better to be someone who’s pushing that change to happen instead of becoming the object that must endure the change pushed upon it.
So that’s one thing we share in addition to our hairstyle. With nothing more as a prepared agenda, we opened up Teams and stated recording a session on Steve has a chat with Jukka. It’s as close to an MVP-to-MVP informal interaction you can get to without flying to Redmond.
You can listen to the audio track on Steve’s website or on Spotify / Apple Podcasts. Alternatively, you can watch two BizApps MVP baldies on your screen for one hour via the embedded Vimeo clip below:
Some of the topics we discuss with Steve include:
- How different the world looks like when you choose to go all-in on Power Platform instead of being a Business Applications generalist
- The struggle of convincing customers that a $5 app can actually give them more value than a $95 app
- How to get the IT on board with the citizen developer movement and turn governance into an enabler instead of a blocker
- What would be the ideal support model for a platform-first business that would reduce the customer/vendor tension and get everyone on the same side
- Why Dynamics 365 partners have very little financial incentives to move their capacity into true low-code business
- The difficulties in making the Fusion Team story sound attractive enough for pro-devs to find their place in the low-code world
- Why Teams is the most important platform Microsoft has and why it isn’t yet quite the right platform for wide scale business applications usage
That’s just a few things I remember off the top of my head, after our awesome chat session. So, if you’re interested in hearing what us two loudmouths think the future of Microsoft Power Platform is – you know what to do.
There’s no sponsors in any of these chats nor either one of our blogs, so I’ll just leave you with two commercial call-to-actions:
- Check out RapidStart CRM to experience what you can do with just a $5 Power Apps Per App license (the CRM part comes free, courtesy of Steve).
- To keep up with what our 100% Power Platform focused team of pretty amazing experts is doing, subscribe to the Forward Forever Monthly newsletter.