This month, India MVP team reached out to “Nauzad Kapadia” one of the veteran MVPs in India region. We asked him for his experience being MVP for past several years and any best practices or tips which he would like to share with the broader MVP community.
In his own words……….
The MVP Program was initiated in India for the first time in the year 2001 and I became one in 2002. At that time, there were only about 20 MVPs from India and we were a very close knit community.
In my initial years as an MVP, there were lot of focus and importance given to newsgroups and user groups. As time evolved, new digital avenues like blogs exploded, some of the User groups, which were very active a couple of years back, saw their activities diminish and in some cases completely vanish. I have seen it happen personally with the Mumbai .NET User group. If I was asked the number one reason for this, I would attribute it to lack of team effort.
A UG is something that is very difficult for an individual person to run on his own. There are lots of people who are doing it individually, but it requires a lot of time and dedication from an individual. Most people are unable to sustain this effort and dedication over a long run because they have regular jobs and commitments to take care of as well. This is where having a team becomes very useful.
Some of most vibrant user groups that I have seen, like the Pune and the Bangalore user group, have this core team which supports each other and that’s how the momentum has not been lost even after a decade. And in my opinion, team building happens best when people interact with each other regularly and have face to face meetings every once in a while.
The monthly events in Mumbai and Pune became like a meeting point for different MVPs to share ideas and what activities they would carry out in the coming weeks. I remember conducting almost 30 workshops in different universities and colleges in Pune and Mumbai as a result of these interactions.
Personally and professionally I have benefitted a lot from the MVP Program. I grew up attending local Microsoft events and watching eminent speakers like Sanjay Vyas, Sanjay Shetty, Raj Chaudhary amongst others speak. I never imagined that I would be sharing the stage with them in the near future. I spoke regularly at local UG events and then Microsoft gave me (and other MVPs) the opportunity to speak at MSDN Events, DevDays and eventually at TechEd. Regular Product Group interactions, access to MS Connect and beta software’s, early insights into upcoming products thru the MVP summit and Open Days have given me a competitive edge compared to my peers and helped me further excel in my profession.
If I could give some tips to the new and upcoming MVPs, they would be as follows –
Good points by Nauzad. He is one of those very good speakers out there. I remember him from early days of Mumbai User Group (MUG), which eventually got killed due to reluctance to include willing members from outside a special circle (I had started to get a feeling that people were becoming uncomfortable in case someone was having good knowledge came forward).
I will give this post a very high value (not just rating) considering that it is written by him.