The IBM Champion program is once more open for nominations for 2017 Champions. For those of you that don’t know, the Champion program has been set up by IBM to reward and thank people who have established a voice in their community. To become a Champion first IBM need to know what you do and there is a nomination form which can be used by others to nominate you or by you to nominate yourself. All the nominations are then reviewed by an internal IBM team who choose the Champions each year. Before going any further you can nominate people here until Nov 4th.
Last year Theo Heselmans and I were selected as the first IBM Lifetime Champions which means we don’t need to be nominated (I will still be nominating others) and last week I participated in a web conference with IBM on the Champion program, what it’s about, what the value is to you and how to become one. You can watch and download that event here and I recommend you do if you’re interested in becoming or nominating a Champion.
For me being a Champion means that the work I do, writing, speaking, feeding back to product development, has been valuable to someone , that they wanted to say thank you and that IBM recognise my work. It doesn’t change what I do or make me more beholden to IBM but it does expand my audience and makes me feel good 🙂 So that said, if there is anyone who makes a difference to your work, answering questions via forums, twitter, on their blogs, who speaks or organises a conference or whose contribution you’d miss if they were to stop – NOMINATE THEM here.
I have heard plenty of people say (and said it myself once) “well if no-one nominates me I guess I don’t do enough” and that simply isn’t true. No-one knows what you do as well as you. Other people may not nominate you because they don’t know everything you do or simply because they think you have already been nominated. I’ve been guilty in the past of not nominating someone I thought was a shoe-in only to find out no-one else did either. Nominating someone else is also a huge compliment to them and a way of saying thank you even if they don’t end up becoming a Champion.
Now go out there and get nominating !
“well if no-one nominates me I guess I don’t do enough”
Well this is kind of true for me. But not because I don’t do enough. It’s because most of what I do is never seen by the general public (ie. you lot reading this) because of the security issues.
And I’m kind of happy with that. If I actually told people what I do, there’d be an awful lot of unhappy people at IBM and other major companies (and a few governments) around the world. I even had to stop blogging about my Notes stuff. I still throw the odd PMR at IBM telling them to fix things (which they do quietly – sometimes).
So whilst the Champions are a great front people for the cause (and they really are great having talked with a lot of them at conferences), there are a lot of hidden people who you’ll never know about.
So I applaud every one of you who are willing to stand in the spotlight. The Champions are great ambassadors for the products who not only show commitment and knowledge, but allow people like me to hide in the shadows, silently supporting their efforts.
I think you would still qualify as Champion – there are plenty whose work is only within their own organisations and since the reasons for being champion are never made public no-one need know what you actually did other than IBM. It sounds like an ideal situation for you to nominate yourself and you should do.