Hola donde de Malaga, Spain. What a week it has been spending time with Microsoft and other Business Central partners in Milan, Italy. It was my first time experiencing Directions EMEA and I am so glad we decided to make the adventure to come to Italy and teach in front of such a wonderful European audience. 


On Monday, I was able to eat with the lovely Mary Thompson, meeting in person for the first time. We went to the Duomo area and ate wonderful Italian in the galleria. We even did dancing in the Piazza with the Italians and had a lot of fun drinking wine with the locals. We were able to share so much about our careers and futures and I am so excited for where we will go from here. 

On Tuesday, I really wanted to go to Lake Cumo, after catching up on some much needed sleep, I headed to the lobby and was joined by my partner in crime and fellow MVP Kristen Hosman. We started talking in the lobby and then came along Stefan Maron, Waldo, AJ, Mary, Soren, and more. We decided to just hang in the lobby, discussing BC, Apps, Issues, our lives, and it was fantastic. So much better than the Lake any day of the week. It set the mood for a good week of learning. This was the first time ever Mary, Kristen and I were ever in the same place at the same time for two years! It was amazing. 


First impressions of the conference were very mixed. The conference was held in the beautiful facilities in the Milan Convention Center. On the first night, we were able to attend a reception expo to gather goodies, our badges, bags, and color coded stickers to indicate how comfortable we were with human interaction. Of course, I was green and this meant okay for hugs and handshakes. Don't worry, 9 days later, I am still COVID free. We enjoyed the wine and walking around the expo hall, which was well laid out with plenty of space. It was very surprising how much of a minority we were, not only being Americans but mostly being women. More on that later. 

Later that evening, we joined some BC/NAV great minds to attend the BC Beerinar Live, which was where I was able to meet some of the MVPS and other talented BC professionals in a pub style atmosphere. I met my good German friend, and scooter gang leader, Peter Steffek and other greats like James Crowter, AJ Kauffman, Waldo, Stefan, Simon,  and more. Thanks for inviting us Kryzstof. 

At one point of the dinner, I was introducing myself and Simon said, "Don't worry Shannon, everyone here knows who you are. We all follow you! "Wow! It took me by surprise because I just make sure and keep up with everyone on twitter but to have an impact globally was a big surprise and it just warmed my heart. It made me love Europe even more than I did before. 


I had three sessions as a leader, two on Tuesday, including the Meet the MVPs section and one on Friday with my talented friend Kristen Hosman. The night before I could not sleep. The nerves of teaching in front of my first non-American audience were real. Mary had been experiencing them all day, but for me it was the first time in a long time. I did not sleep well that night, thinking of all the things that could go wrong. 

After opening session Wednesday, it was showtime. I made it to my room early and noticed that the room was slowly filling up. By the time I started my presentation I had a packed house. This happened again on Friday morning with Kristen Hosman as well. Wow, the Europeans really do want to hear us American MVP girls speak, I was honored. 

I had a great time with both sessions. It was cool hearing feedback from so many of you via Twitter, LinkedIn and in person. It was very fun showing the Power of Teams, Automate and Business Central along with showing great tips on how to implement Business Central properly. 

The Meet the MVPs session was also fun. Especially standing next to the great AJ Kauffman, who keep the conversation moving along. It was awesome to be there in Milan with 20 of 30 MVPs of Business Applications and most in Business Central.