Last week I received a very unexpected email:
“Hi Esteban, Congratulations, your nomination has been accepted to the Microsoft Regional Director program! I am pleased to welcome you to this worldwide community of technology thought leaders and thank you for being a part of this community.”
About 6 weeks earlier, I had submitted the information requested as part of my nomination. And although I eagerly filled that out, I did not want to get my hopes too high on it as I knew that there is a really high bar of entry into the program. So I very much expected a “nice try, here is a list of things that you may want to do in the next year to give yourself a better chance. And…wow, what an exciting moment it was when I received that email! I had to read it a couple of times to make sure it said what I thought it said. I am so honored and humbled to join such an impressive group of people, many of who I’ve learned from over the years.
Regional Directors are hand-picked by Microsoft based on a rigorous set of evaluations designed to help us select the best representatives of developer, IT pro, and strategic technology needs of the world’s most impactful businesses.
Over the next couple of weeks I’ll have an orientation session where I’ll be able to understand the ins & outs of the program and start contributing.
About the RD Program
The Regional Director Program provides Microsoft leaders with the customer insights and real-world voices it needs to continue empowering developers and IT professionals with the world’s most innovative and impactful tools, services, and solutions.
Established in 1993, the program consists of 150 of the world’s top technology visionaries chosen specifically for their proven cross-platform expertise, community leadership, and commitment to business results. You will typically find Regional Directors keynoting at top industry events, leading community groups and local initiatives, running technology-focused companies, or consulting on and implementing the latest breakthrough within a multinational corporation.
People have asked me some questions since the news came out:
– Do you work for Microsoft now?
No, although the title may lead to you believe that, RDs do not work for Microsoft. In some cases, Regional Directors or their companies may have contracts to deliver goods or services to Microsoft but they are not employees. So, yes, I will continue leading my awesome team at Nebbia and this will allow me to provide even more insight to our customers and more advocacy on behalf of our customers.
– Are you still an MVP?
Yes, I am still a Microsoft MVP, focused on ALM/DevOps. The key differences between RD and MVP really come down to the business consultative nature, customer experience, and cross platform architect skills possessed by RDs versus the deep technical focus which qualifies an MVP. I fall under both categories and I expect to be part of both programs.
You can read more information in the FAQ section of the RD site: https://rd.microsoft.com/FAQ
I look forward to continuing serving the community, speaking at conferences, and generating content that help you learn about DevOps and Azure!