We are proud to be able to congratulate Ben Lee as M365 Apps & Services Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for 2023. Through passion and enabling people to understand Microsoft 365 and Teams telephony, meetings and complex deployments better as blogger, speaker and author, he has been recognized as MVP. As an author, he is part of the author team of the monthly updated book, Office 365 for IT Pros, where his chapter is about Teams Voice. Catch Ben at upcoming events such as ENow call quality webinar and Comm vNext.
At the time of writing, 10 of 11 CloudWay employees are MVPs and we are very proud of creating a work environment for passionate individuals who love to share their knowledge and encourage other to do so.
We asked him three questions on becoming an MVP
- What has motivated you to put in the effort required to be an MVP?
- My love of community started in 2008 when I met some of the UK Microsoft Technical Evangelist team delivering a “Technet Roadshow” event in Newcastle (near where I lived). Up to that point, all the technical events I’d seen were in London or other faraway locations that I couldn’t access. There, I realised the benefits of sharing experiences and knowledge with other people were really beneficial for everyone involved.
- After that, I started helping with a new local user group that was set up, and I’ve gone from there, helping where needed and giving presentations on all sorts of exciting topics.
- What has been the most important for you in this journey?
- The main value I find in technical communities is the people you get to meet. When people share their experiences and skills, it becomes collective knowledge and elevates everyone. Getting to engage with people striving to overcome the same problems and who are as excited by the technologies as you are is fun, and when work is fun, it is not really work!
- Working alongside so many passionate people also makes you want to be better and do better in aspects beyond just technology. We have made progress over the years, but there is still a lot more to do and things that need addressing to ensure everyone gets a fair chance to make an equal contribution.
- Any first thoughts on what being an MVP would mean for you professionally?
- MVP swag!
- But seriously, the MVP award is a little bit different in our technical world, it isn’t something you can pay for or pass a test to get, like other industry qualifications. Instead, it comes from recognition for contributions over time, meaning that MVPs are often highly regarded in our space for their personal effort. As someone (like many others, I’m sure) who struggles somewhat with variations of imposter syndrome, being nominated for and receiving this award makes me feel very privileged but also a little bit proud. If I can do this, so can others, and perhaps I can dispel some of those imposter feelings a little bit (or they will get worse, who knows!).
- But don’t get me wrong, I’ve always been passionate about Microsoft technology (because I believe they offer great solutions), and so being a little closer to the people who build these things is an exciting prospect. Oh, and the MVP swag, did I mention that already?! I’ve got the traditional IT Pro weakness for swag so having some MVP branded bits and pieces will make my year.
Who are MVPs?
Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals, or MVPs, are technology experts who passionately share their knowledge with the community. They are always on the ”bleeding edge” and have an unstoppable urge to get their hands on new, exciting technologies. They have very deep knowledge of Microsoft products and services, while also being able to bring together diverse platforms, products and solutions, to solve real world problems. MVPs make up a global community of over 4,000 technical experts and community leaders across 90 countries/regions and are driven by their passion, community spirit, and quest for knowledge. Above all and in addition to their amazing technical abilities, MVPs are always willing to help others – that’s what sets them apart. Read more here