The SharePoint50 Project: Some Thoughts on Being Named a Top SharePoint Influencer

Top SharePoint Influencer 2010 logoWith a post on EndUserSharePoint two weeks ago, Mark Miller and Global 360 announced the SharePoint50 Project.  In a nutshell, Global 360 and KnowledgeLake commissioned Influencer50 to perform an independent study to determine the 50 most influential voices in the SharePoint space, with a particular focus on those who influence SharePoint buying decisions within the U.S.  The first round of influencers was announced last week in the category of System Integrators and Consultants, and included therein were indisputable SharePoint notables such as Andrew Connell, Dan Holme, Ted Pattison, and Arno Nel.

This morning, under the category of Solution Providers, the second round of influencers were revealed, and, surprising no one more than me, in the company of bonafide SharePoint rock stars such as Joel Oleson and Shane Young, there's … me?!  Say what?

I assure you, I can pretty much guarantee that no one was more surprised than me to learn that I had made the list of the top 50 SharePoint influencers.  In all honesty, when I was first approached as having been identified as such, I thought someone was playing a joke on me.  I mean, how could I be a top influencer when what I'm best known for in the community is SharePoint Blank, the entire premise of which is that here's a guy who is the furthest thing from being a SharePoint expert?  OK, that's not entirely true, especially given that the promise of this blog is that with each post I'll learn and share something new (new to me, anyway) about SharePoint, but I trust that you see my point. 

If the results of the study weren't both impartial and conclusive, I think I might still suspect someone of punking me, but since the results of Influencer50's study are genuine, I guess I have to start getting used to the notion of being an influencer.  But before I start getting used to that  notion, I feel compelled to point out the obvious, which is that by any reasonable person's estimation, there are loads of eminently more qualified folks, with vastly superior SharePoint knowledge than me in the SharePoint space (heck, I don't even have to look any further than my own colleagues here at Bamboo to find a whole bunch of them!) but, surprising as it may be, I'm apparently among the most influential.  Crazy old world, ain't it?

So, having said that, to what do I attribute this singular honor?  Well, I figure that it's got to be this very blog, and especially the fact that I posted fresh content here every day for over a year before my pace began to slow as other responsibilities came to the fore.  Given that SharePoint Blank is written by a non-technical end user for other end users, more than anything, my inclusion on this list of influencers strikes me as a huge win for Team End User, and if my inclusion on the list can help (along with, to again point out the obvious, Mark Miller's own EndUserSharePoint) to shine a spotlight on the importance of content directed at end users, and the value inherent in actively serving their needs, well, I'm not at all conflicted about that … I think that would be pretty great.  Similarly, and to the primary "influencer of buying decisions" component of the SharePoint50 Project, if an end user-centric blog like this one is genuinely influencing buying decisions (as my inclusion on the list would seem to indicate), that's equally powerful, if not even more so, because it suggests to me that the voice of the end user is increasingly factoring into the buying decisions within organizations.  That's huge, my friends.

After all, at the end of the day, are we not all end users?

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