Should I have named this blog post ‘Career 3.0’? Today saw me complete my first week at Microsoft, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be heading back to Thames Valley Park for week two. I’ve joined the Enterprise and Partner Group as a Business Productivity Sales Professional in the Specialist Team Unit. Here’s a few thoughts from my first week:

  • Thames Valley Park is an inviting place to work – free drinks and fruit on offer, a number of subsidised restaurants, a small Starbucks outlet, and a well-being centre. There’s also lots of informal meeting spaces, including collaboration areas incorporating television screens for projecting presentations.
  • I had a new laptop (a Lenovo T420s if you’re interested) and a Windows mobile phone (an HTC Mozart) even before I’d sat down at a desk. By the afternoon (after Orange had worked their magic by activating the SIM) the phone was receiving e-mail, calendar content and contacts.
  • The on-line ‘Welcome Experience’ is excellent.
  • Along with every other Microsoft employee based at Thames Valley Park I’ve been invited to the ‘fun day’ to kick of the new fiscal year. Get that… a fun day… food, drinks and entertainment provided.
  • In one morning I met five Business Partners who have already deployed Microsoft Lync with integrated telephony into customer infrastructures. And I learned about the scale of the Lync business. Say no more.
  • A couple of days later, I was fully Lync-enabled. Up until then I’d been able to use VoIP and click-to-call, but now I have a single number (that anyone can call) that will cause Lync on my desktop or my mobile to ring.
  • Everyone uses Lync for telephony – there are a few phones in meeting rooms, but none on the desks. Lync (and a headset) is provided for everyone… and everyone uses it.
  • There are a number of really good features in Outlook. There, I said it.
  • The Intranet provided by SharePoint is quite amazing, particularly the features around the search results. And the Lync integration into the SharePoint content is extremely polished.
  • I bumped into a large number of former IBM colleagues – now colleagues again.

Unfortunately, I suppose it’s time to request my removal from Planet Lotus… that was part of Career 2.0.