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Matt Lacey
Co-Founder, Proximity Insight
Melbourne, Australia
See my Trailhead Profile

There are very few technologies around where you can make these kinds of relationships and find so many people ready to help.
Tell us about how you first started with Salesforce.
A friend of mine from university started working for Salesforce, and several years later, he was running a small Salesforce SI (systems integrator) company. One thing led to another, and I signed a 3-month contract to do some work for them while I looked for a job in the gaming industry. That was at the tail end of 2009. I've been happily developing on the Salesforce platform ever since.
When did you first start to feel like a Salesforce expert?
A couple of things happened all at once, helping me to realize that I had become a bit of a Salesforce expert. One of those things was earning my first Salesforce certification. Those exams aren't easy, and you do need to know the system in detail if you want to pass. The second was the realization that I was one of the top answer providers for Salesforce-related questions on Stack Overflow — this drove me to propose the creation of a Salesforce Stack Exchange site.
Tell us more about the Stack Exchange site.
I'm pretty proud of getting the community support required to get the Salesforce Stack Exchange proposal through to a beta phase. I tweeted about it daily for months, wrote blog posts, and told anybody and everybody I could to get on board. It reached public beta 5 years ago, and I've been a moderator of it ever since. To date, over 50,000 questions have been answered on there!
How does Trailhead help you do your job better?
It's a great tool for getting the basic ideas and concepts of a new area or technology quickly. Each time I touch a new part of the platform, I go straight to Trailhead. I can always count on it to give me what I need.
How has Trailhead changed how you help others learn Salesforce?
The fun and gamification aspects aside, Trailhead has provided a gentler and more structured methodology for getting into the Salesforce platform. As the platform has constantly been growing and evolving, it's traditionally been quite tricky to recommend a learning path to people new to it; these days there's no two ways about it: you simply ask what they're keen to learn and then point them to the appropriate trails and modules.
What does the Trailblazer Community mean to you?
It's genuinely hard to put it into words. I've met so many people around the world through the community, most of them online at first, and then later in person. It feels like I've known many of them for far longer than I have. I've made some genuinely good and close friends through the community. There are very few technologies around where you can make these kinds of relationships and find so many people ready to help.
How will Trailhead be a part of your future?
I'll always use it as a Salesforce learning tool. But from the point of view of our business, trailmixes are amazing for onboarding staff — especially Salesforce newbies. Trailhead helps them gain the skills and knowledge they need to help us continue to build an amazing product, and myTrailhead will help us push toward that goal.

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