Problem: The interest level in Service Manager is through the roof since we released System Center 2012. I’ve had so many customers lately through various channels asking to speak with other customers that have deployed SCSM. They want to understand if SCSM will meet their requirements. They want to know how to do certain things. They want to connect with other people that are deploying SCSM so they can learn best practices and what mistakes to avoid.
We produce case studies on how customers use System Center, but that’s not quite as good as talking directly with a customer that is trying to do what you are doing right?
I was thinking about how to solve this problem, but I didn’t really want to be in the business of customer connection brokering. It’s just challenging to find a customer in a similar industry doing similar things that would be willing to take time out of their day to answer questions from another customer. Trying to coordinate that for lots of different customers would be pretty time consuming. Further – a 1:1 discussion is sort of limited – you only get one person’s perspective. Ideally, you would get multiple because people have different ideas, experiences, skills, and ways of doing things. There had to be a better way!
Solution: I was interviewing somebody today for a community PM position. I asked her to come up with some creative ways to engage with the community. After a few suggestions, I asked her to dig deeper to see how creative she could be. She came up with this idea to host Lync meet ups (a “LyncUp”, sort of like a TweetUp – you heard it hear first!) with the community and let people just have an open discussion about whatever they want. Brilliant!
So – I’m going to start a regular LyncUp for SCSM customers to get together and just talk to each other about whatever they want. It won’t be like a user group meeting or a web cast because there won’t be a predetermined speaker or agenda. I’ll be there and I’m sure some of the MVPs and product team members will be there too. It will be a way for customers to meet each other and potentially have side conversations following the LyncUps to go deeper on topics or potentially collaborate with each other.
We’ll start with 1/month, but I’m open to feedback on how often we should have them as well as what time of day etc. Anybody that wants to is welcome to join. All you need is a phone and/or Lync!
If you are going to use Lync remember to download and install the Lync Attendee client or Lync client ahead of time!
Attached to this blog post is a .ics meeting invite you can add to your calendar. The meeting invite contains the hyperlink to click on if you are going to join the meeting using the installed Lync client, phone numbers if you are in the U.S., and a hyperlink to look up other regional phone numbers.
The first meeting will be Nov. 6th at 9:00 AM Redmond time. See you then!