MVP Spotlight
Pierre Vivier-Merle
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Pierre Vivier-Merle

SharePoint Server
France
I’ve always been passionate about IT in general, and since the beginning of my career, I’ve always considered it vital to share and exchange your experiences with your peers.  Extending this sharing of experiences beyond the reaches of my company therefore seemed only natural to me.  I’ve been an active member of the communities for 8 years now, whether I’m leading conferences (something I especially enjoy doing), writing articles, co-authoring books (SharePoint 2007 and SharePoint 2013), writing my blog (http://blogs.developpeur.org/pierre), or participating in the web forums.
I am an associate director at vNext, an IT consulting and services firm that specializes in Microsoft technologies but also publishes its own software. Since the firm was established just over 3 years ago, our staff numbers have grown to about 60, which is definitely a sign of positive development and a source of pride for us. I’m in charge of the Business Productivity department, whose target is to increase individual and collective efficiency in business, mainly by working on processes, usages, and tools (in particular Microsoft Office, SharePoint, Exchange, Lync, Office 365, Dynamics CRM and Yammer, among others).  With 15 years of experience and after over a hundred projects behind me, I also often get involved in the architecture side and results-based project management in those areas. 
My MVP status has allowed me to benefit from privileged access to Microsoft, and, more specifically, to be in closer contact with the development teams.  This has also allowed me to access a network of experts made up of MVPs from everywhere in the world.  I’ve been able to extend my know-how to others through contact with these communities and find continuously better ways to share knowledge about my area of expertise. Just look how far we've come since Tahoe, the 1st version of SharePoint!
I’ve just finished up with a major event in France, alongside 4 other MVPs (Xavier, Patrick, Nicolas, and Serge) – Conf’SharePoint. It’s the first professional conference of its kind held in France, in French (www.confsharepoint.com). It was a huge success, with about 300 participants over the 3 days, 60 speakers, and loads of other partners getting involved.  In light of these results, we’re working on preparing for next year accordingly.
The crowning moment, of course, is the MVP Summit.  Seeing 3,000 people converge from everywhere in the world to talk about Microsoft technologies for almost a whole week is pure bliss.