Category Archives: Leadership

Some Thoughts on Event Speaker Selection

I write this from the perspective of experience. I’ve helped organize dozens of events over the past ten years. Feel free to take the parts of this advice that help and discard the parts that don’t. Enjoy! Planning an event is hard work. If you’ve never volunteered to help your local User Group or SQL Saturday, I encourage you to get involved. You will work hard and put a lot into it. But I promise you will get more out of it than you put in. Every organizer is free to organize their event in whatever…(read more)

Well Done, PASS Leadership

I am impressed with the response of PASS leadership to the controversy surrounding the 2014 Board of Directors election. Others have covered the topic much better than I will here, but a short version is PASS responded to the PASS Board 2013 election controversy (members with multiple email accounts receiving multiple ballots) by requiring members to identify a primary account / email address. The issue? Not everyone got the message. The initial response from PASS leadership was in line with previous…(read more)

Attitudes I Wish I Had Earlier

Mike Walsh ( blog | @Mike_Walsh) tagged me in his post, 4 Attitudes I Wish I Had Earlier as a DBA . You should read Mike’s post, it’s filled with helpful and good advice and tells cool (and not-so-cool) stories. I admire Mike’s transparency. I struggle with the four areas Mike already covered – Work/Life Balance, Empathy, Hero Syndrome, and Getting Things Done. I will not rehash his points. I’m less susceptible to hero syndrome, empathy, and getting things done, but I more than make up for them in…(read more)

Do You Learn?

Silly question? Maybe. Hang with me, please. This will be short – a couple / three minutes, tops. Do you know more than you did six months ago? A year back? Yep, we both know you do. How did you feel back then, before you knew what you know now? Did you sense there was something missing? Did you know you didn’t know? No, you did not. That thing that you recently learned, did it just become true? Or was it true all along and you didn’t know or accept it? What about the stuff you believe right now?…(read more)

What Does a Good Mentor Do for You?

These would be good mentors – me plus Adam Machanic, and Klaus Aschenbrenner Not long ago, John Sansom ( Twitter | Blog ) kicked off a SQL Community Project #DBAJumpStart by asking 20 successful and experienced SQL Server professionals this exact question: “If you could give a DBA just one piece of advice, what would it be?” I wrote up my Advice for the Aspiring DBA post here , while John collected the entire set of responses here within the DBA JumpStart collection. Part of my advice, indeed of…(read more)

A Mistake, Responding Well, and a Public Call for a Public Apology

I am about to break one of the rules of this blog. Years ago, I decided to never write about things that happen with clients until at least one year had passed. I am going to make an exception and write about something that happened very recently in the first part of this post. I confess I have been writing the second and third parts of this post for a couple years. I have waited to publish those parts for much the same reason I wait to write about client interaction: There is no substitute for the…(read more)

On Codes of Conduct

I have mixed emotions about codes of conduct. I respect the right of any organization – public or private, for-profit or not – to create, maintain, and enforce codes of conduct. At the same time, I find the need for such standards depressing… especially in professional organizations. I am and have been a member of professional organizations that have a code of conduct. I was a Microsoft MVP for five years and I am currently a member of the Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS). Both have…(read more)