Praise arrived in my Office 365 tenant


It is a well known fact that money only motivates people to a certain level, beyond that it has little effect on improving performance and participation in an organisation. However, public recognition can provide measurable productivity and engagement improvements.

As you can see from the above image the ability to praise people has arrived in my Office 365 tenant.


Where do you find it this option? The ability to provide praise is found in Delve. Once you have navigated to your Delve you select the individual you wish to praise from the list on the left and then their profile page on the right. In the lower right of their profile page you will find an area, as shown above, in which you can add public praise for that individual.

If there is already praise there you will see it listed, as shown above. To add praise simple select the +praise link on the right.


When you do a new choice slide will appear from the right as shown above allowing you to enter text and select at suitable “badge” to go along with your praise.


Once the praise has been saved you will see it added to any praise that has already been bestowed.


The user awarding the praise, as well as the person receiving it will receive an email informing them of the award.

I think this is a really great addition to Office 365 and shows to me that Microsoft is really thinking about ways to boost users productivity with Office 365. However, what concerns me is the lack of awareness of these types of features.

Features like praise are a free addition of every Office 365 tenant and should be an opportunity for resellers and IT Pros to go to their users and highlight the new included feature and help the customer understand how it can be used to improve their business. Unfortunately, I don’t see many IT Pros or resellers helping their clients use these new features, let alone even being aware of them.

That is a sad state of affairs and really devalues Office 365 and the features that it provides because 80% of the features of Office 365 remain unknown to customers. Most Office 365 implementations I run across from other providers are simply just using it for hosted email even though they have access to the full suite of services such as SharePoint, Skye for Business, Yammer, etc. as part of their Office 365 subscription.

It’s time for those that claim to be Office 365 IT Pros and resellers to truly embrace the length and breadth of the product. It is time for them to invest in understanding not only what the Office 365 product can do but also how it can help their customers business. Failing to let clients know about free additions to Office 365 like PowerBI, Azure Single Sign On portal and so on is simply a path to oblivion in the modern IT world.

Wake up and start using Office 365, the WHOLE of Office 365. If all you are doing for your customers is moving email from one location to another and NOT adding value you are going to struggle to remain valid to the customer. Office 365 offers so many opportunities to engage with customers and build unique products and services. If you don’t someone else will and if the customer is already on the Office 365 platform they have a standard platform to work with already. You have in fact made it easier for your competition to trump you.

At the very least, my call to action, is for you to start using Delve. Customers, ITPros and resellers, get to it now and use ALL the features the product provides.

Free Ask Us Webinar–October


We’re back with another free ‘Ask Us’ webinar on Thursday the 22nd of October 2015 from 12.30pm Sydney time. You can sign up for this events at;

You’ll get the latest cloud news and updates. Then you’ll have the opportunity to ask any question you want and we’ll do our best to not only answer the question but show you exactly on screen.

A lots happened in the last month, especially with Office 365, so don’t miss this opportunity to catch up on all the news and see all the changes that happened recently.

I hope to see you at the event next week.

Office 365 Group files interface change


If you have an Office 365 First Release tenant and you go and have a look at your Office 365 Group files you’ll see that the interface has been updated to the new look OneDrive for Business as you can see above.

This gives it a consistent look and feel with an individual’s OneDrive for Business which is a good thing. This and all the other changes that have surfaced in the last week or so give you an indication at how rapidly this product is evolving.

Talking Power BI

While recently at Office 365 Nation in Seattle I did a short podcast with Karl Palachuk all about Power BI and its how it can provide benefit to even small businesses.

You can download the MP3 to listen to at:

If you haven’t as yet taken a look at Power BI I would strongly encourage you to do so. At the very least you should be connecting Power BI to Google Analytics to analyse what’s happening on your web site.

Look out for more information about Power BI coming here soon.

Need to Know podcast–Episode 92

Thanks to my very special guest for this episode, Marc Kean, for not only agreeing to being interviewed but for also doing a new intro and extro for the podcast. Let me know what you think!

I cover off the latest Office 365 news and then dive into Office 365 compliance with Marc who shares his knowledge and experience around ensuring business information is kept secure and how to achieve that with Office 365.

You can listen to this episode at:

or subscribe to this and all episodes in iTunes at:

The podcast is also available on Stitcher at:

Don’t forget to give the show a rating as well as send me any feedback or suggestions you may have for the show. I’m also on the hunt for some co-presenters so if you are interested on being a regular part of the show please contact me.


Marc Kean – Twitter

My Office 365 Nation wrap up

The new Office is here

Office 365 Planner

Meet the new OneDrive

Office 365 compliance features

Use Office 365 to help be compliant

Tips for maximum conference ROI

I have returned from presenting at another conference. You’ll find my presentations from the event embedded further down in this post or at my

I thought I’d also take a moment to share some techniques and tips I’d recommend you employ when attending a conference to ensure that you get the most from any conference.

1. Remember you are at the conference for business.

It is all well and good to take a step back and enjoy everything that a conference has to offer, the food, the drink, the location, the company, but remember it is all costing your business money. Thus, you should be asking yourself whether you are getting return on investment constantly. This may mean learning something new, meeting a new contact who can help your business, etc. but you need to ensure you GET something in return.

Don’t get caught in the trap of treating the whole event as a party. Don’t get caught in the trap of getting wiped out on the first night and then being unable to attend any of the sessions. Have fun, yes but always ask yourself, what return am I getting for my investment in time and money at the conference.

2. Have a plenty of business cards

Always ensure you have plenty of business cards before leaving for a conference. Every time you go anywhere near the conference venue ensure your pocket if full of business cards and you have an adequate supply elsewhere as a backup.

Don’t be shy handing out your business card as well as receiving cards from others. Every time your strike up a conversation with someone, make sure they leave that conversation with your card.

3. Carry a pen

As only fashioned as it seems having a pen ready and available is till the quickest way of writing notes and capturing information. In my case, I always ensure there is space to write on the back of my business card so I can write a URL or a note and give that to someone. If you don’t have a business card that allows this, carry some blanks cards just in case.

It is easy to say that you’ll send an email follow up, however jotting it down goes a long way to ensuring that you’ll follow through.

Also remember that battery power can be at a premium during conferences and you don’t want to be tethered to a wall and miss out on the hallway conversations. A pen is a great information recording device backup for your phone or tablet when it starts running low on juice.

4. Make yourself available for conversations

There is nothing wrong with waiting in a publically visible but off to the site location. Try and find an area that will accommodate at least one other person and is quieter than the middle of the conference throng.

By doing this you make it more enticing for someone to come up and have a chat with you, especially if they have been looking for a chance to do just that. Being immersed in the conference ‘mosh-pit’ is great and there is always something interesting happening but remember, you are looking to generate the most return for your business not listen to others pontificate constantly.

5. Convert business cards into Linkedin contacts asap

Whenever you get a chance, go through the business cards you have received so far in the day and connect with them on Linkedin. This is firstly a good backup in case you misplace their business card but it also give you deeper insight into that contact and their details thanks to Linkedin. It does likewise for your new contact but also indicates how keen and on the ball you are by making contact electronically shortly after meeting them.

6. Wear the uniform

Many people think that it is extremely boring to wear the same outfit to a conference every day. I purposely ensure I wear that same thing throughout the conference. One of the main things I ensure I do is wear a branded shirt. Why? People respond to consistency, the more consistent you are, in every aspect, the more comfort people derive. Also, if you wear the same thing you make it easier for people to identify you in the crowd if they are looking to seek you out to make contact.

Wearing the ‘uniform’ also reduces the decisions you need to make about packing for the event and dressing on the day. Personally, I don’t want to waste my precious decisions credits on working out what to wear each day, I simply don the uniform and get on with generating ROI for my business.

There are of course plenty more tips I could pass on but these hopefully should provide you some benefit next time you attend an event.

Let me know what you think works when you attend a conference. I’d love to hear.

Unleashing the Power of Azure

Is Windows 10 the last version resellers will ever install?

Office 365 Admin center preview arrives


Woh! Big day for my Office 365 tenant with the new Admin center preview also now showing up as you can see from above.

Much more user friendly and removes many of the distractions from the older portal that tried to be everything to everyone in my opinion and simply became too cumbersome. Less is always more when it comes of efficient design, so I say this new portal is a winner.

I wonder what other new surprises I can find in my tenant today?