5 Ways To Become An IBM Champion (Oct 15 Deadline)


GreaterIBMers, are you a technical expert or educator who actively blogs, speaks at conferences or events, or authors books or magazine articles?  Or do you know someone who does?  If so, we invite you to learn more about the IBM Champion program.

Nominations are open through October 15, 2013 –  we’d love to see Greater IBMers nominated for this program!

5 Ways To Become An IBM Champion

An IBM Champion is an IT professional, business leader, developer, or educator who makes exceptional contributions to the technical community and influences and mentors others to help them make best use of IBM software, solutions, and services. The IBM Champion program recognizes these innovative thought leaders and rewards these contributors by amplifying their voices and increasing their spheres of influence.  An IBM Champion is not an IBM employee. IBM Champions can live in any country.

Here are five ways YOU can become an IBM Champion:

1 – Evangelize and advocate for IBM
  • Speaks at conferences, user group meetings, IBM events
  • Uses social media channels to help spread the word about IBM solutions and increase positive sentiment towards IBM
  • Helps IBM share specific messages around launches and announcements
  • Work within their own company or their customers’ companies to encourage continued use of IBM technology
  • Help customers make the most of the IBM technology that is installed (use of expanded features, broader adoption, and more)
  • Explores ways to reach outside the current community sphere to reach new audiences.
  • Partners with IBM about how to become better evangelists
2 – Share knowledge and expertise
  • Participates in online forums, answering questions and sharing expertise
  • Shares expertise through instructional videos, podcasts, interviews, and other support/teaching sessions
  • Shares knowledge via white papers, Redbooks, wikis, and/or wiki articles
  • Provide feedback and suggestions on IBM certification exams
  • Provide feedback and suggestions on product usability and documentation
  • Participate in usability activities to improve IBM products
  • Helps IBM improve on products and solutions by actively participating in beta programs, usability studies and other types of research
  • Organizes or connects people in their network to find support for issues
3 – Help grow and nurture the community
  • Uses social media channels (blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Connections, podcasting, and others) to drive awareness to community topics and events
  • Starts, leads and/or participates in local user group meetings and events
  • Participates in community webcasts and meetings
  • Helps mentor new community members and drive them to community sites
  • Guides community members so they know how to leverage information in the community (that is, help new people know where to go for help)
  • Participates in or leads activities to encourage sustained community activity and contributions
  • Implements new and innovative ways of growing the community
  • Communicates honestly, openly, professionally, and respectfully (for example, keeps private conversations private or complies with NDAs)
4 – Expand reach across the IBM portfolio
  • Finds ways to expand customer adoption of broad set of IBM capabilities
  • Integrates solutions across the IBM portfolio
  • Leverages IBM’s breadth of technologies to augment brand specific products
5 – Present feedback, both negative and positive, in a constructive and professional manner
  • Provides feedback in appropriate forums such as a design partner programs, or private discussions with target IBM contact who can affect or implement changes
  • Reaches out to appropriate contacts within IBM to share criticism or suggestions using clear concise, professional language
  • Any challenges, issues or problems you wish to resolve with IBM should be discussed with the appropriate IBM personnel in a private venue. Sharing frustrations in a public or social venue on issues that may reflect negatively on IBM, business partners and/or negatively impact revenue streams is not appropriate.

Nominations will be open until October 15th. The announcement of the new set of champions (including renewals) is currently planned for late November or early December.


- Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

The Top 10 “How to Sell” Books of All Time

Amazon.com today offers 341,472 book titles that include the word “sales”. And 48,427 of its titles include the word “selling.” Because it’s unlikely that you’ll get to read all of those, Inc.com’s Geoffrey James here identifies the top ten that should be found in every business library.

See the Top Ten of All Time


Greater IBM, what’s missing from this list? Let us know in the Leave a Reply box.

About the author:

Geoffrey James writes the Sales Source column on Inc.com, the world’s most visited sales-oriented blog. His newly published book is Business to Business Selling: Power Words and Strategies From the World’s Top Sales Experts.

Follow him on Twitter: @Sales_Source


- Posted by Regan Kelly


LinkedIn Reaches 200 Million Members

LinkedIn earlier this year reached a major new milestone: 200 million members.

And The Greater IBM Connection’s LinkedIn group has nearly 80,000 of those members.

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for being an active part of The Greater IBM Connection network – we’re glad you’re here. If you’ve ever been, or are currently, an IBM employee, you are eligible to join our LinkedIn group. (NOTE: This group is not open to contractors.)

In addition, you can always join us on our Facebook page and Twitter feed. See you there!

infographic LinkedIn 200 million members

Congratulations to IBM Champions 2013!


Congratulations to our IBM Champions for WebSphere 2013!  To welcome or to get in touch with these thought leaders, please contact Daphne de Flavia.

You can also visit the featured new champions’ profiles directly.

New to the IBM Champion program? The IBM Champion program recognizes innovative thought leaders in the technical community — and rewards these contributors by amplifying their voice and increasing their sphere of influence.

An IBM Champion is an IT professional, business leader, developer, or educator who influences and mentors others to help them make best use of IBM software, solutions, and services. Learn more about the IBM Champion program and the nomination process.

Want to know more? Watch this Web lecture about the IBM Champion program anytime. (Note: One-time login may be required.)

What’s New around The Greater IBM Connection

In this issue:

  • Are you an IBM Champion?
  • Help us reach a milestone!
  • New GIBM blog


Are you an IBM Champion?

Are you an outstanding Lotus or WebSphere developer? Or an expert in System z or Power Systems? Do you blog, participate in online forums, etc., about these kinds of topics?

In other words, are you an advocate of IBM’s capabilities? Or do you know someone who is?

If so, then we invite you to learn more about the IBM Champion Program. Details here: http://ibm.co/A1C4u9

Nominate a champion – yourself or another worthy candidate: https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/champion/

Want to know more? Check out the Web lecture on the program: http://bit.ly/TzL7hM


Help us reach a milestone!

We’re delighted to see that our Facebook page is closing in on a milestone number: 10,000 Likes. It’s well  within reach today – please visit https://www.facebook.com/GreaterIBM and click Like. That’s all there is to it.

Facebook logo

Can we get reach 10K today, Greater IBM? Thanks for your help!


New blog

Don’t forget to bookmark and visit The Greater IBM Connection’s brand new blog. It’s a great way to keep yourself up to date with news from Greater IBMers, IBMers, and IBM itself.  http://bit.ly/S2uW1k

Stay informed, stay connected, and get involved, all in one online spot. We’re enjoying hearing your comments – you can leave them after any of the blog items, so let us know what you think.

And remember, when you’re posting to Facebook or Twitter, use the hashtags #GreaterIBM and #IBMalumni so that your posts will show up throughout our social media channels.

Reach other Greater IBMers wherever they are when you join the conversation!

Do YOU Have What It Takes to Be an IBM Champion?

DeveloperWorks program showcases excellence in IT

Greater IBMers, are you a terrific WebSphere developer or expert? Do you blog, write articles, actively participate in forums, etc.? Are you interested in speaking at Impact 2013? In other words, are you a strong advocate of IBM’s capabilities? Or do you know someone who is?

IBM Champion program logo

Do you have what it takes?

If so, we invite you to learn more about the IBM Champion program.

To Nominate a Champion, visit: https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/champion/ or contact Daphne de Flavia (deflavia@us.ibm.com) for more details. Nominations are open August 15 – October 15, 2012. We’d love to see Greater IBMers nominated for this program!

What is an IBM Champion?

An IBM Champion is an IT professional, business leader, developer, or educator who makes exceptional contributions to the technical community and influences and mentors others to help them make best use of IBM software, solutions, and services. The IBM Champion program recognizes these innovative thought leaders and rewards these contributors by amplifying their voices and increasing their spheres of influence.

An IBM Champion is not an IBM employee. IBM Champions can live in any country.

Contributions can come in a variety of forms, and popular contributions include blogging, speaking at conferences or events, moderating forums, leading user groups, and authoring books or magazines. Educators can also become IBM Champions; for example, academic faculty can become IBM Champions by including IBM products and technologies in their courses’ curricula and encouraging students to build skills and expertise in these areas.

Benefits of being selected as an IBM Champion

IBM Champions retain their title for one year, after which they can apply for renewal. In addition to merchandise customized with the IBM Champion logo, they also receive:

  • Visibility, recognition, and networking opportunities at IBM events and conferences
  • Special access to product development teams
  • Invitations and discounts to events and conferences
  • Online recognition (via their Lotus Connections profiles) on developerWorks, with a special designation of “IBM Champion” and a listing of notable achievements

Greater IBMers who become IBM Champions will enjoy added benefits of having their activities featured on The Greater IBM Connection community site.

China and Brazil Alumni Research Project

Thank you for your interest in collaborating with us on this research project!  Here is a description of the project again, for reference.  To register, please fill out the form below, and we will contact you.  Thank you!

Are you a C-Suite Executive, CIO or IT manager in China or Brazil and interested in collaborating with IBM on market research?  We’re building personas and conducting in-country research on web experiences and invite you to participate in this initiative.  As a core member of our research team you will gain valuable insight and experience on what makes a compelling web experience  There are several ways you can participate:

  1. Recruit prospective client interviewees from your own company or network of peers facing similar challenges.
  2. Conduct the in-country interviews based on a prepared script we provide.
  3. Respond to the interview and provide your insights to the project.

Please fill out the form below to register and join this initiative.  We look forward to your participation!

Registration Form

–Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

Greater IBMers Love Animals

Greater IBMers are passionate people, with a wide range of interests.  When we posted this question to the members of our LinkedIn Group – “What’s the most interesting thing you do in your non-work life?” – it quickly turned into one of the most popular discussions we’ve seen, generating close to 200 comments.

In this discussion thread, several Greater IBMers shared with the group their love of animals and caring for the earth’s creatures. Among our group members, we have one alpaca farmer, an owner of a petting zoo, several animal rescuers, and a marine life surveyor, to name a few. There’s even one Greater IBMer who had the privilege of meeting Jane Goodall through her work with the Wolf Conservation Center.

Read some of the amazing animal stories that Greater IBMers have shared with us:

–Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

The Greater IBM Connection Kick Off in New York – A Recap

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to attend the Greater IBM Connection kick off in New York. I was glad I attended.  As a former Communications intern in Somers, New York, I was eager to reconnect with some of my former colleagues. 

The event was well attended and featured entertainment by magicians and brief remarks from Dr. Paul M. Horn, who retired over the summer from leading IBM Research, Greater IBM Ambassador Ethan McCarty and others.  Horn joked that he was the only manager in IBM history to sport a ponytail and he vowed to keep it in retirement as he turned around to show the applauding audience.

The event was a great opportunity to network with both IBM alumni and current IBMers, although there were more alumni than active employees present.  Oh yea, there also was an open bar.  I was glad I attended and got to reconnect with IBMers both past and present.  I can’t wait to see what programs await the Greater IBM Connection in 2008 and beyond.

-Ezra Rich


A Tribute to Two Great New Greater IBMers

Two of our colleagues and members of IBM’s small strategic communications team…

Christopher Barger, who has been one of IBM’s most visible leaders in IBM’s deep dive into blogging — our semi-official blogger-in-chief as it were — and other new media fronts


Ben Edwards, who has been a global leader in IBM’s new media efforts, including podcasting and the excellent ShortCuts program on ibm.com, as well as revamping ibm.com’s homepage editorial strategy and helping shape IBM’s Globally Integrated Enterprise strategy.

are taking on exciting new roles…Chris is joining General Motors, and Ben is circling back to the Economist (from whence he joined IBM) to lead that fine publication’s internet and new media efforts.

Both Ben and Chris have been wonderful collaborators and skilled pros in the leading edges of communications that we’ve been lucky enough to work on. And because they have lived and breathed the ways in which innovation has become open and collaborative, I  expect that they will embody the hope and promise of IBM’s new business social network… the idea that “Once an IBMer, Always a Greater IBMer.”

Just as they have been valued and esteemed as collaborators within IBM, they will be valued as collaborators with IBM  (and Greater IBM) in their new roles. Ben and Chris are just the kind of imaginative and strategic thinkers that will undoubtedly find ways to make the most of The Greater IBM Connection, now with more than 3,500 members. (The community has in fact nearly doubled in the last six weeks).

For starters, I imagine they may take advantage of the network’s ability to help them maintain their contacts with current IBMers, as well as extend their reach to thousands of Greater IBMers — those like Ben in Chris now in new roles, as well as retirees and interns –

More important, I  imagine that they will also contribute good ideas on how this expanding network can actually drive business opportunities and support the kind of constructive collaborations that are the hallmarks of the people-powered Web 2.0 phenomenon — and of Greater IBM’s mission.

Of course, one of the fundamentally human reasons for launching Greater IBM was to ensure that whenever an IBMer like Ben or Chris becomes a Greater IBMer (as we all will, sooner or later… preferably not posthumously), the enterprise and its extended ecosystem can celebrate the personal and career success of those moving onto new challenges or entering retirement.

After all, IBMers regularly go on to greater things — the company is one of the largest breeding grounds for future CEOs and CIOS — because the culture both attracts the best and often makes people even better.

Ben and Chris: we salute you and sincerely wish you well. And while you will both be sorely missed, the Greater IBM Connection means that we aren’t saying goodbye, but inviting you to continue to collaborate with us, and with the Greater IBM community.