Blue Monster's First Anniversay
It’s Blue Monster’s first birthday so come on …”Happy Birthday to you, happy birthday to you…”
As with most One Year Olds it’s just beginning to walk and talk beyond those early baby ramblings and we’re just getting beyond those “aawwhh isn’t cute!” or “looks just like it’s dad!”. As Steve says in his post people either love it or hate it and I’ve personally gone from one extreme to another and back again and I’m sitting at the “love it” end at the moment. But as Steve points out people have an opinion on it. One thing I cannot deny is Steve and Hugh’s committment to it and their desire to start the multitude of conversations that have gone on around it. It’s made me think about my relationship with Microsoft, iQubed’s relationship with Microsoft, my customer’s relationship with Microsoft and my relationship with other Microsoft Partners.
Some people may think there is a certain arrogance to “Microsoft being able to change the world” but there is no doubting that as the one of the richest companies in the World, it does have certain responsibilities beyond it’s core business aims. In fact it is called Corporate Social Responsibility.
I used to be firmly on the “Microsoft is Evil” camp and my aim when starting out in business was to show businesses how Microsoft was screwing them silly and locking them in to their solutions. Open Source was the saviour to me! Before starting my business I was a software team leader for a Software Consultancy specialising in GSM/3G solutions to major Telecomms compnaies. We were developing test software for this market enabling 3G testing. I led a team of 6 Java Developers and introduced them to NetBeans (Open Source development framework), Ant (Java build tool), CVS (Configuration Control) and Bugzilla (bug/issue tracking) – so the whole toolset and application was Open Source from start to finish. I then went on to work for a Smartcard Company working on developing test tools using Eclipse (Open Source Java development framework) working with a team who were totally Open Source and where one of the team was a contributor to Debian. So, you can see I don’t come from a Microsoft Technology background.
How does this relate to the Blue Monster? Well, my Company is now a Microsoft Certified Partner and I’m a SBSC Partner Area Lead and I was sitting clapping enthusiastically at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in Denver in July to Steve Ballmer. So, quite a “Road to Damascus” I would say! It was some people from Microsoft who changed my perception of Microsoft because they actually came out from TVP and talked to us. I began to find that I actually liked these people, that I could trust them, that they did not bullshit me and they were genuinely interested in my success. You could say it was their job to do this but thinking back, it was not their job to do all the things they did do and they did it because they believed in something more than just a big corporate that they worked for. It was the Blue Monster at work eventhough they were not necessarily followers of it.
I used the Blue Monster in my recent presentations to fellow SBSC Partners because we are at the frontline of how end customers perceive Microsoft, we are the ultimate Blue Monster foot soldiers whether we are fans of it or not.