Imposter Syndrome

I recently attended the London VMUG and Joep Piscaer presented a great closing keynote on Imposter Syndrome entitled “Come Listen to Me, I’m a Fraud.” 

The synopsis of his presentation stated “With fifteen years in IT and a successful career as a world-class infrastructure engineer, as a speaker at many industry conferences, a blogger, analyst and technical marketing freelancer for Silicon Valley Startups and a CTO of a 1200+ infra and software engineering company, I can definitely say I suffer from imposter syndrome.”

While I could relate to some of the content he presented on, I personally didn’t think I’d been in a position in my career where I felt I didn’t belong, was out of my depth or was an “imposter.” How ironic then that a few weeks after the London VMUG and Joep’s presentation, I sit here writing this post with a complete fear of being exposed as an imposter!

Let me elaborate. There is a big movement around Women in Tech (you may have noticed) and I’m a very strong supporter of this movement. I’ve mentored a few women in terms of raising their own profile and advised on career advancement for example. I’m a regular reader of CRN here in the UK and they recently asked for nominations for Women in Channel awards. There were over 500 nominations received and they announced the list of nominees in May. I was delighted to see my name on this list in the Entrepreneur of the Year category. The next step was for one to complete an online questionnaire to move to the next stage of being shortlisted. The questions were very diverse; from what motivates you to has being a woman impacted any part of you being an entrepreneur. I duly completed the online questionnaire and, frankly, didn’t think any more about it. As mentioned previously, I regularly read CRN so when I saw they’d published the shortlist, I didn’t even read it immediately – because of course there’s no way I’d have made the cut. But when I did finally read the article, I was delighted, shocked and amazed to see my name listed, along with 6 other nominees!

Now, reading the article, I started to totally relate to Joep’s presentation. I clearly shouldn’t be on the list, little ol’ me from hiviz-marketing – established so I could fulfil both my passions of technology and riding my horses – was listed amongst these other women in tech  – WTAF!  I shared the news on Twitter and FaceBook and was so delighted to see everyone’s congrats. So, maybe, I am worthy after all? Perhaps the feeling of imposter syndrome will ease? If I listen to Joep, the answer to that is no!

I enter many of my clients into industry awards and always tell them to make finalist stage is a win in itself, to win the actual award is just the icing on the cake. I’m taking my own advice then – I’m a winner already!! The awards dinner, where the winners will be announced, is being held in London on 17 October. That date is my wedding anniversary. So, I’m going to take hubby along and we can at least have dinner on hiviz-marketing – assuming the accountant agrees!!

London VMware Forum – May 2nd 2013

 

I attended last week’s VMware Forum at Wembley, staffing the VMUG booth.  As a leader of London VMUG, I was asked by Jean Williams from VMware if I could volunteer to staff the booth to promote our local VMUG and to recruit new members.  Our chair, Alaric Davies, was also able to attend for the day, and it was great to see a contingent of our members stopping by and chatting to prospective members about the value of joining London VMUG, including Luke Munro, Ricky El-Qasem, Simon Eady and Simon Davies.  Although we only had a small booth, we were very busy during the breaks between the keynote and the break out sessions.   I think we must’ve signed up over 50 new members, but the results of the scanning we did will be divulged later this week.

Having attended last year, the layout was much more conducive in the Bobby Moore Suite to networking and chatting – previously it was crammed packed with lots of sponsors and bigger booths.  This year VMware UK marketing had decided upon a tad fewer sponsors with smaller booths to allow for better movement around the hall.

Joe Baguley – a tremendous supporter of all things VMUG, in particular our London meeting and our national UK user conference – stopped by to say “Hi” after his keynote and to confirm that the 21st November is already in his diary!   I had the pleasure of sitting in on Joe’s keynote earlier in the day; as ever it was informative and entertaining with snails, kittens and chickens making their usual appearance 🙂  Other VMware VMUG supporters, such as our honorary committee member Martyn Storey, Mark StockhamMatt Piercy and Brian Gammage were at the event and was great to catch up with them all, albeit briefly.

It was also great to see old friends Roger Baskerville from PHD Virtual and Scott Bennett from Liquidware Labs – we all used to work together in the good ol’ days of Vizioncore (pre-Quest and pre-Dell!)  I also caught up with Heather Lock from NetApp, Heather used to work for me during my tenure at Citrix and I hopefully have convinced her to get NetApp to sponsor the London VMUG as we’ve never had them sponsor our local meeting 🙂

Two of the companies I work with, Nutanix and VMTurbo were both in attendance, with Nutanix basking in the glory of having just been announced as a Gartner Cool Vendor and VMTurbo’s newly hired VP Worldwide Sales, Chris Reisig, attending his first VMware Forum, in between conducting interviews for newly created sales positions in the UK.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All in all, a busy, enjoyable day  – great for networking and great for signing up new members.  However, not too sure there was any real ‘meat’ for the attendees in the sessions, some of whom I spoke to said the same, good for networking but nothing really new.

Don’t forget to mark your diaries for the next London VMUG, 4th July and for our UK User Conference 21st November, all details can be found at www.vmug.com !