I’m still speechless … a huge thanks for everyone, and much love to my team!

Conn-Grad-Ulations at MGX FY15It was a pretty incredible week for me last week, and I still feel overwhelmed and undeserving. To be awarded the Microsoft Platinum Circle of Excellence was unbelievable in its own right. To win the Microsoft Founders Award was simply stunning.

When I saw my name on the confidence monitor in front of me, just before they made the announcement, I thought I was dreaming. Then Christina Thoresen (another M&O Platinum Circle of Excellence winner who was standing beside me) nudged me and said “thats you!!!”

I think I passed out for a few seconds, and then had a mini-meltdown … and then they actually announced my name. I looked down at my feet and realized they weren’t obeying commands to move … so I started to lean forward in the hope that my feet would follow my body. Fortunately, gravity and nature took over and I was able to run down to the stage for a big hug from Judson Althoff, and handshakes with Kevin Turner and Satya Nadella. Pretty unbelievable all around. Even now, as I write this recollection, I’m wondering if it was real, or if I dreamed the whole thing…

The frustrating part of last week is that it was really recognition for USCMO, not for me — although I got to be the one who went on stage and get the accolades. It’s simply not possible to create the kind of 21st century marketing organization that we’re developing without 50 of the most committed, capable, and quite frankly amazing individuals that work in USCMO. I love going to work; I love the people I work with; and I love the work we’re doing. Thank you so much to everyone in USCMO for such an incredible experience, and for being such an amazing team. You are my wings — it’s the team that drives me every day.

I have a bunch of great shots and videos from the stage presentations which were sent to me by a whole bunch of super nice peers and teammates — THANK YOU — but since we’re not supposed to post any MGX content publicly I’ll keep those for my private collection.

What I do have posted here are two awesome posters from my team — the “Conn-Grad-Ulations” sign is from the team that travelled to MGX in Atlanta … and the “Congratulations Grad!” sign (complete with all my favorite non-Microsoft people) is from the rest of the team that stayed in Bellevue/Lincoln Square.

Congratulations Grad from Lincoln Square

There’s also this great sign from my M&O peers waaaaaaay up in Section 307 of Philips Arena. I love the supportive team environment that Allison Watson, our M&O Lead, has built. There is no question that without Allison’s support and mentorship none of what we’ve accomplished in USCMO would be possible. She is, without question, the best boss I have ever had:

MGX FY15 Team Sign in Section 307
Thank you to Allison for your constant support and guidance. And thank you to Judson Althoff, our MSNA President, for his inspiring leadership that makes us take risks; bet big; and go fast. It’s the reason we all got into the technology industry in the first place, and it’s wonderful to feel that wind at your back.

Here’s to an amazing FY15!