Meeting Agendas – Essential or optional?
Jun21

Meeting Agendas – Essential or optional?

Last week I threw a question out on Twitter and I guess I hit a nerve! I have long been of the belief that if you want me to attend a meeting then you really need to let me know what you need from me so I can do you the courtesy of fully committing or letting you know that I may not able to meet your expectations. To do this I generally ask for information that sets out the… Continue Reading Alan Eardley’s Article on their...

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Show 11 – Part 1: News and front of mind

This week we have a special guest as Stephan Bisser, MVP for AI with a focus on Conversational AI, joins us to talk about Bots. Part 1 first though, the news as we pick up some of the latest updates following the Microsoft 365 Virtual Marathon and some Power Platform goodness. <!– –> If you would like to appear on the show, please drop us a line using the form at

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Show 11 – Part 2: Here comes the robots

This week we have a special guest as Stephan Bisser, MVP for AI with a focus on Conversational AI, joins us to talk about Bots. We cover three key topics: Why/when would you use a Bot? How do you get started designing then building a Bot? What’s changed recently? Stephan’s post on updates from Build Adaptive Cards Management System Bot Framework Composer General Availability Updates to… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Meeting Chat in Microsoft Teams
May28

Meeting Chat in Microsoft Teams

Challenge Within Microsoft Teams meetings, there is a chat capability visible to all attendees (those invited to the meeting) and participants (those added to an instance of a meeting). After a meeting has ended, participants can still see the meeting chat Roles There are three roles in a meeting Organiser The person who creates the meeting.  They have full access to edit the… Continue Reading Alan Eardley’s Article...

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Show 10 – bonus edition: Microsoft Build 2020

A bonus show this week as Kevin (the Grey), Al (the Hat) and Garry (the beard) discuss the news and their views from Microsoft Build 2020. We cover the big announcements as well as a few interesting ones that may have missed your attention <!– –> General Build On-Demand Sessions Scott Hanselman’s Keynote Satya Nadella’s Keynote Easter Eggs Microsoft 365 News Microsoft Lists Cortex… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Thoughts on MBAS 2020
May08

Thoughts on MBAS 2020

The Microsoft Business Applications Summit is THE conference for Power Platform and Dynamics enthusiasts.  This year, like many other conferences it had to adapt to the current global situation and go online. The format that they went for was different from many other conferences and I think it worked exceptionally well!  Each session was 30 minutes long, and included 5 minutes to address… Continue Reading Alan...

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Show 9 – Part 1: News and front of mind

I like that but can it look a bit less like SharePoint? Have you ever heard that said by someone? You might even have agreed. We talk about how true that thought is and if it needs to be done, what are the best ways to do it if you really do have to. This week we also have a special guest joining us so big thanks to Matt Weston for giving us his time and thoughts on SharePoint. Also this week,… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Show 9 – Part 2: I like that but can it look a bit less like SharePoint?

I like that but can it look a bit less like SharePoint? Have you ever heard that said by someone? You might even have agreed. We talk about how true that thought is and if it needs to be done, what are the best ways to do it if you really do have to. This week we also have a special guest joining us so big thanks to Matt Weston for giving us his time and thoughts on SharePoint. Also this week,… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Carry out a Quick Poll in Microsoft Teams
Apr18

Carry out a Quick Poll in Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is being used for a lot of meetings at the moment and depending on the number of attendees there are a few features that may be missing or not obvious to use.  Following on from a thread on a community forum I wanted to share the solution to a couple of features: Raise HandQuick Poll Raise Hand This is a feature that is coming to Microsoft Teams.  It is currently in… Continue Reading Alan...

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Show 8 – Part 2: How you work and staying focused

How is the world of remote working treating you? Are you able to work well and focus? This week we chat about how to track your work effectively with Microsoft 365 and some techniques for staying focused. How you work and staying focused We kept it to general chit chat this time but covered topics like: Tracking work and prioritising Sticking to one thing Keeping focused with music and… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 8 – Part 1: News and front of mind

How is the world of remote working treating you? Are you able to work well and focus? This week we chat about how to track your work effectively with Microsoft 365 and some techniques for staying focused. Part 1 focuses on the news and what we’ve been up to. If you would like to appear on the show, please drop us a line using the form at https://www.greyhatbeard.com/upcoming-shows. We’d… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 7 – Part 1: News and front of mind

Is governance a dirty word to you? Let us persuade you otherwise as we talk about the importance of governance with the Power Platform, sharing why you should do it, how best to do it and when to do it. Part 1 focuses on the news and what we’ve been up to. If you would like to appear on the show, please drop us a line using the form at https://www.greyhatbeard.com/upcoming-shows. We’d… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 7 – Part 2: Governance and the Power Platform

Is governance a dirty word to you? Let us persuade you otherwise as we talk about the importance of governance with the Power Platform, sharing why you should do it, how best to do it and when to do it. Governance and the Power Platform Three topics: What do we mean by governance? – what it is and why you should do it What can you do for the Power Platform? – using the tools and an intro to… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Show 6 – Part 1: News and front of mind

Bucking the trend, we have decided to go Corona Lite in this episode and try and provide a distraction to the talk of remote working and certain viruses that are filling our newsfeeds. Instead, we’ll be talking about Contributing to Open Source. Part 1 focuses on the news and what we’ve been up to. Talking of open source, a little reminder about our etiquette of Microsoft 365 repo. It is… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 6 – Part 2: Contributing to Open Source

Bucking the trend, we have decided to go Corona Lite in this episode and try and provide a distraction to the talk of remote working and certain viruses that are filling our newsfeeds. Instead, we’ll be talking about Contributing to Open Source. Contributing to Open Source Three topics: Why you should – the benefits to you and everyone else How you should – a little overview of Github and… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Pre-Requisite Questions for Power Platform
Mar07

Pre-Requisite Questions for Power Platform

I was with a client this week and we were discussing the Power Platform and identifying potential projects that would be both beneficial to the business and that would demonstrate the power of the platform. Finding the scenarios to automate was not a challenge.  The primary challenge that we identified was preparing the organisation and the production tenant so that Power Apps environments… Continue Reading Alan...

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Show 5 – Part 2: How we learn

We are halfway to double figures and the Hat is back for Episode 5. This week, it’s back to school as we talk about learning. How do we learn? Three topics: Learning by training and certification Learning by listening Learning by doing Related links: Microsoft Certifications Phil Worrell’s podcast list (including us!) Sharing is Caring – great guide for GitHub contributors...

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Why use the Common Data Service?
Mar04

Why use the Common Data Service?

Last week I was asked rather late in the day (over dinner the night before actually) to contribute to the introduction to a hackathon at the Scottish Summit on the subject of de-mystifying the Common Data Service. As a subject, it is a fantastic area to talk about, but it is also critically important that it is understood.  I had the honour of participating with the other hosts, Lucy Bourne… Continue Reading Alan...

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Show 4 – Part 1: News and front of mind

Episode 4 and our first guest! Joining us is Marijn Somers, MVP for Office Apps and Services from Belgium and bringing a beautiful hat to stand in for Al who is away this week. Part 1 focuses on the news and what we’ve been up to. Marijn Is powerapps a worthy follow up for infopath ? Outlook Spaces: the pinterest for your project Jeff Teper also taking over Teams Kevin Kevin’s first… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 4 – Part 2: Etiquette of Office365

Episode 4 and our first guest! Joining us is Marijn Somers, MVP for Office Apps and Services from the Netherlands and bringing a beautiful hat to stand in for Al who is away this week. Etiquette of Office 365 Three topics: What would you consider when sharing the etiquette of Office 365? Why is etiquette important? What are your top tips? Related links: No Hello Image by MorningbirdPhoto… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 3 – Part 2: Problems with Dev Ops in a Non-Agile World

Episode 3 is up and after some feedback, we’re going to two shows – one for news and what we’re up to and the other on the discussion. In the discussion this week, we cover Problems with Dev Ops in a “Non-Agile” World. Problems with Dev Ops in a “Non-Agile” World Three topics: Building trust and confidence through DevOps Setting up a product backlog Setting up agile friendly… Continue Reading Kevin McDonnell’s...

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Show 3 – Part 1: News and front of mind

Episode 3 is up and after some feedback, we’re going to two shows – one for news and what we’re up to and the other on the discussion. In news, there’s more insights for Power Apps, more notes for Azure Dev Ops and more outages for Microsoft. Al Model-driven apps in Power Apps App Insights integration for Power Apps Power Apps Test Framework 19th Feb – Power Platform Happy Hour – link… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Site Design Deployment Made Easy
Feb01

Site Design Deployment Made Easy

Site Designs have made the deployment of repeatable customisation of sites much easier, and in my opinion are the starting point for any SharePoint deployment for communication or collaboration. While the capabilities of Site Designs are well documented and continue to evolve, I see many environments where the deployment of the Site Scripts and Site Designs has been done in a way that… Continue Reading Alan Eardley’s...

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Show 2 – Part 4: What problems will Cortex solve?

We’re back for more! This week we decided to split the show in to four smaller, easier to digest parts for all you busy people on the move. The running topic this week was the hugely exciting subject that is Project Cortex and all that it will be able to offer. The four parts are: Part 1 – News and what’s front of mind for the Grey, the Hat and The Beard Part 2 – How will end users use… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Show 2 – Part 3: How will Cortex make metadata different?

We’re back for more! This week we decided to split the show in to four smaller, easier to digest parts for all you busy people on the move. The running topic this week was the hugely exciting subject that is Project Cortex and all that it will be able to offer. The four parts are: Part 1 – News and what’s front of mind for the Grey, the Hat and The Beard Part 2 – How will end users use… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Show 2 – Part 2: How will end users use Cortex?

We’re back for more! This week we decided to split the show in to four smaller, easier to digest parts for all you busy people on the move. The running topic this week was the hugely exciting subject that is Project Cortex and all that it will be able to offer. The four parts are: Part 1 – News and what’s front of mind for the Grey, the Hat and The Beard Part 2 – How will end users use… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Show 2 – Part 1: News and front of mind

We’re back for more! This week we decided to split the show in to four smaller, easier to digest parts for all you busy people on the move. The running topic this week was the hugely exciting subject that is Project Cortex and all that it will be able to offer. The four parts are: Part 1 – News and what’s front of mind for the Grey, the Hat and The Beard Part 2 – How will end users use… Continue Reading Kevin...

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Installation of Microsoft 365 Learning Pathways
Dec24

Installation of Microsoft 365 Learning Pathways

Microsoft recently launched Microsoft 365 Learning Pathways as a solution that will allow an organisation to provision a learning site into their tenant which can then be used by their employees to learn about Microsoft 365.  To quote Microsoft, the solution will provide A fully customizable SharePoint Online communication site – The learning pathways training portal can be customized to… Continue Reading Alan...

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End of Year Task Tidy Up
Dec21

End of Year Task Tidy Up

It’s the end of the year, you’re on annual leave to enjoy the holidays, rest, recharge your batteries and then get back to work in January with a tons of energy and enthusiasm, and no outstanding tasks. Wait a minute. That last part!  That’s not true, I have a ton of stuff left in To-Do and Planner plans, and those emails I received in the last week, well they haven’t all been dealt… Continue Reading...

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Rename a Microsoft Team and the associated SharePoint site
Nov23

Rename a Microsoft Team and the associated SharePoint site

There are many situations where a Teams site and the underlying SharePoint site may need to be renamed: Created in errorOrganisational restructureIntroduction of naming policies This has been a challenging goal to achieve but it is now relatively straightforward when you combine the SharePoint and Teams PowerShell commandlets. Objective Starting with a SharePoint site and Team that… Continue Reading Alan Eardley’s Article...

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Ignite 2019 – Summary
Nov10

Ignite 2019 – Summary

This has been my 4th Ignite and I have to say, this year has been the best, not because of the announcements – there are always announcements – but because it has been building on what has been achieved over the last five years. One of my biggest complaints in previous years has been the expected date that the features will roll-out to General Availability as showing me cool things I won’t… Continue Reading...

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Ignite 2019 – Day 5
Nov09

Ignite 2019 – Day 5

Day 4 concluded with the obligatory celebration at Universal Studios.  As if 10,000 steps a day were not enough an additional 10,000 steps and 8 rollercoaster rides were heaped on top of a full-on week. That was not to stop Day 5 being productive! Common Data Model (CDM): All you need to know about CDM Link to recording As the Common Data Model underpins many of the services and… Continue Reading Alan Eardley’s Article on...

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Ignite 2019 – Day 4
Nov08

Ignite 2019 – Day 4

Extending the new Microsoft Project with the Power Platform Link to recording The second session on Microsoft Project and this one was focused on how to leverage the Power Platform that the product is built on to increase and customise the capabilities of the tool.  This is definitely one of the key benefits to moving away from Project Online to Project for the Web. As with… Continue Reading Alan Eardley’s Article on...

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Ignite 2019 – Day 3
Nov07

Ignite 2019 – Day 3

PL900 Link to exam page On Monday 4th November, Microsoft released new exams including PL900 – Power Platform Fundamentals.  As part of Ignite it is possible to take an exam, I figured it would be a good opportunity to take this beta exam.  As I booked it in the evening to take it at 07:15, there was no time to revise other than reviewing the syllabus. The exam isn’t massively… Continue Reading Alan...

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Creating a modern connected workplace with Office 365 and Dynamics 365
Oct29

Creating a modern connected workplace with Office 365 and Dynamics 365

Why your organisations needs to create a modern connected workplace ” Incremental Group A modern connected workplace is a target that every organisation should have, it is about empowering your employees with the tools they need to successfully communicate, collaborate and be effective in their roles in a modern business environment. When looking to create a modern connected workplace, organisations need to consider how they...

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Whitepaper – Taking Office 365 further with Dynamics 365
Oct21

Whitepaper – Taking Office 365 further with Dynamics 365

Taking Microsoft Office 365 further with Dynamics 365 In this guide we discuss how organisations can take the tools they know and love further with Microsoft’s suite of business applications, Dynamics 365. Dynamics 365 offers the ability to take the tools your employee use every day and offer a range of new capability to run your departments and take your productivity...

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