Monday, August 18, 2014

How can we contribute back to the Awesome Salesforce Community

I started working with Salesforce platform for quite sometime now and learnt most of the stuff on the job and the rest with a great help from the awesome salesforce community channels ..

  • Success Community (Answers Board & Chatter)
  • Salesforce Developer Forum
  • Salesforce Stackexchange (SFSE)
  • Lots & Lots of Blogs (from MVP members and other great minds)
  • User Groups & Developer Group Meetups
  • Dreamforce Sessions
  • Webinars & Salesforce Youtube Channel videos
  • Social #AskForce in Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+
  • and many more.....

as a Developer when you see so many different options/places to find a solution to what you are working on, over a period of time you will start thinking about contributing back to these channels which helped you.. and thats how i started my work in sharing what i learnt from the community back to the crowd to help people like me who are reaching out to the community everyday.. 

believe me this is more interesting / challenging / engaging / satisfying than just browsing existing answers or repeatedly asking the questions .. the more you share the more you learn.. the amount of research I do to post an answer helps me to understand and gain a deeper knowledge of a topic to which i answer.. i would never read those documents or articles if I am not answering a question..

I initially started with Salesforce Success Community Answers Board and then extended myself into Salesforce Developer Forums and recently into Salesforce Stackexchange as well.. 

each of these forums has a unique way of operating / dealing with questions & answers, how the contributors are rewarded / ranked, etc.. it takes a while for anyone to understand the moderation rules. I would suggest users to go thru existing discussions, use the search to find whats already existing, browse already Solved ones, top answers, FAQ pages to understand more about how the forums work, then get started with simple ones which you are very sure & confident about.. 

If you are answering to a question in any of these forums, I would suggest to follow these simple steps
  • Salesforce has Awesome Documentation resources (Salesforce Help, Docs, Youtube videos, blogs, etc..) if the answer exists in any of these please share those links and guide the user to the related section 
  • if the question has already been asked and answered before, provide those links instead of copying & sharing the answer again
  • if someone already answered to the question, no point in repeating the same.. see if you are adding more details or value with your answer compared whats already there
  • do your research and provide as much details as possible in a single answer rather than making it a chat by asking more questions and answering at the same time
  • finally share some respect to fellow contributors
here's my profile across the 3 different discussion boards I am currently involved in

Success Community Answers Profile

Developer Forums Profile

Salesforce Stackexchange Profile

Remember the more we share the more we learn.. :-)