Joachim Hjertholm, one of June’s featured user group leaders, is new as a leader because his group focuses on the newest product in the Microsoft Power Platform product group: Power Pages. Upon release of the public preview earlier this month, his was one of the first new groups to launch globally, and the first in Norway. He was inspired to start one after his own user group experience made a big difference in his own professional growth.
Joachim loves seeing “how user groups come together to share knowledge, both online and through events,” and this is what inspired him to be more engaged with the community and start a user group. When he first started with Power Apps and Power Automate a few years ago, he discovered that the questions he needed answers to were often found already asked in the PowerUsers forums. This, along with the ready assistance offered by other users in the forums, helped him discover that the community was a great resource when he needed help most.
As a new user group leader, he looks forward to bringing like-minded professionals together, helping them connect over the product—but also to deepen personal connections as well. He knows firsthand the difference being in the community has made for him: “It’s safe to say that I wouldn’t be on the level I am today if it weren’t for the help and information that’s available thanks to the community.” For anyone else, like him, who is new to the user group experience, he offers a piece of advice: “There is a lot going on in the community in terms of events and networking within the user groups.” Taking advantage of these opportunities is a great way to get started. “There are many individuals who are passionate about bringing the community together!”
Danilo Capuano leads to user groups for Italian members focusing on Power Platform: Power Apps User Group Italia and Power Pages User Group Italia (which launched with the public preview of the all-new Power Pages). Since starting the first group over a year and a half ago, Danilo wanted to help grow the concept of community in Italy, a place where he says, “We are slight late with the concept of community.”
Being part of the user group community has helped him expand his network and also helped him professionally, with ongoing recognition as a leader who values sharing and listening to other users and empowering them to help each other. One of his favorite aspects Is creating hybrid events for community members to connect virtually or in-person, a great way to help each other learn from their experiences.
He encourages new leaders to just “START! It’s the most difficult step, after which it begins to be engaging and fun.” He also suggests new leaders focus on providing time and skill support for members. Being in a user group helps members have a great place to start and grow, as well as finding support from experienced users and finding out the newest updates.
Danilo believes one of the best things he has learned from being a leader of two groups is that “time, passion, and dedication are needed for the growth of the group.” As a leader of groups for Power Apps and Power Pages, he encourages others to discover the difference it can make for them, personally and professionally. “Being a user group leader for the last year has helped me be recognized as a leader and specialist in the industry in the Italian field.”