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SQL Saturday #110 – Tampa

We interrupt this episode on Sunday Funday to remind everyone that next Saturday, March 10th, is SQL Saturday #110 in Tampa.  Over the last year, I have become a passionate proponent of attending SQL Saturdays working diligently to attend ones that are close to me.  How can you pass up free training?

If you have not signed up to attend this SQL Saturday, then what are waiting for?  Check out the schedule of sessions, as we have some pretty top-notch speakers.  My biggest problem is that there are too many good sessions and inevitably, I miss a great one.  That is a good problem to have!  If you want to help out with this SQL Saturday, be sure to fill out the volunteer section of your registration.  If you see me at SQL Saturday, feel free to say howdy!



Do You Value Training?

Today is the first day of my Immersion training, thus I prepared this blog post a few days ago. 

If you have been reading my blog, then you should be able to surmise that I love learning.  Being in the IT field, I am not sure how you can get by without training because of the speed at which technology changes.  Luckily, my current employer also believes in and values training.  When they ask me if I want to go to training, I submit three or four different classes.  Of course, they do not all get approved, but all they can do is say no.  Thus, it is worth the effort on my part and it demonstrates my committment to my career.

Do you value training?  Are you taking advantage of the training opportunities provided by your employer? 

If the budget is tight, there is no reason why you cannot attend many of the free webinars, code camps, SQL Saturdays, and especially local users groups.  If you are not advancing your skills, then maybe technology is not the right field for you.  So sign up for training.  Go!  Do it now!


SQL and Nothing Else?

I have a thought that has been resonating in my head all week, well probably for a couple of weeks.  It was a comment made at the Tampa Bay SQL Server User Group Holiday gathering last month.  To set the scene…it was a moment of frivolity where several of us where debating as to who had the best job.  Naturally, everyone denied that it was their job and thus pointed to another member at the table and espoused the reasons that they believed that person to have the best job.  When the TBSSUG version of Quentin Tarrantino, yes looks and mannerisms but not the height, turns to me and says the following:

Tarrantino:  “Hey what about you, do you have the best job?”

Me:  “No, I don’t think so….”

Tarrantino:  “Why not, what disqualifies your job?”

Me:  “My job is not 100% SQL, therefore it cannot be the best job, in my opinion.  I have other Windows Server administrative duties, I am a VMWare administrator (which is a positive and not a negative even though it may not seem like that from the tone of this blog), I have to attend numerous pointless meetings, and I have to deploy numerous dot NET applications, which should disqualify me automatically.  I am personally responsible for approximately 200 servers.  Don’t get me wrong, but I love my job, except for the pointless meetings, but that is a separate blog topic.  I just don’t think it would be the best job, that would be a job where I was a SQL DBA for 100 percent of my duties…”

Tarrantino:  “100%, that would be the worst job….who would want to do that?  SQL and nothing else, that would be boring…no way…you’re crazy…(turns to the next person) What about you, is your job the best?”

It was a silly conversation served up with a delicious beverage and Christmas cookies, so why does it still bother me?  Is it the fact that one of my peers does not share the same passion for SQL Server?  Or is it the fact that maybe I am Don Quixote and this is my windmill:  chasing a dream of a golden job opportunity in a town called Perfect. 

What do you think?  Enjoy

Personal Development Plan Part Dos….

Having posted yesterday about my Personal Development Plan, I read a blog post from Neil Hambly regarding his 2012 goals.  Now, I realize that my goals were somewhat vague and easy to worm out of.  Here are the goals that I had mentioned yesterday:

  1. I want to dedicate time everyday to this blog and giving back to the SQL community that has helped me so much over the years.
  2. I want to continue to dedicate time to the SQL community in social media.
  3. I want to attend at least ten events this year consisting of SQL Saturdays, training, code camps, and possible SQL Rally and/or SQL PASS.

Let’s revise those goals to the following:

  1. I will post daily to this blog in order to give back to the SQL community that has helped me so much over the years.
  2. I will spend time daily helping people on twitter, SQL blogs, and various SQL-related websites such as SQL Server Central.
  3. I am setting a goal of 300 followers on Twitter which would double my existing followers for 2011. 
  4. I will attend at least ten of the twelve Tampa Bay SQL Server User Group meetings
  5. I will atend three to five other SQL User group meetings, such as the Tampa BI group or Orlando’s MagicPASS.
  6. I will attend every Tampa VMWare User Group meetings which occur quarterly.
  7. I will attend other events that interface with SQL Server or VMWare such as the Orlando IT Pro Camp scheduled for January 21, 2012.
  8. I will attend one Microsoft SQL training course this year, but I cannot say at this time what that course will be as that will depend upon my employer ;-).  I would like to attend Course 2778a (Writing Queries Using Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Transact-SQL) and Course 6234 (Implementing and Maintaining Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Analysis Services. 
  9. I will attend every SQL Saturday offered in the Orlando, Tampa, and Jacksonville areas.  I would also like to attend some others, if possible, within driving distance.  I am already registered for SQL Saturday #110 in Tampa on March 10, 2012.
  10. I will volunteer to help with at least one SQL Saturday this year.
  11. I would like to attend SQL Rally in Dallas this year and I would definitely like to attend the SQL PASS Summit, but with one child in college this year and two more entering over the next two years, I may have to pass on this one for a couple of years until they are situated and my bank account returns to normal.
  12. I will continue to take at least one to two classes a semester online in order to complete my degree in Business Administration.  All those Engineering and Computer Science classes I took 20 years ago are not relevant today and I would like  to possibly return to consulting in five or ten years and that degree would be more beneficial in that long term goal.
  13. I will continue SQLAndy’s recommendation to meet at least three people at every SQL event.  This is a great recommendation for networking.  It is hard sometimes to break out of our introverted ways.
  14. I will attain my VMWare Certified Professional 4 certificate this year for VMWare.
  15. I would like to speak somewhere this year, my local SSUG, VMUG, or even a training session at work.  I need to get over my fear of public speaking. 2012 is the year to step it up and take it to another level.

I think this is an adequate list on my second day of contemplation, but I will review this over the next week or so to decide if it is exhaustive.  Stay tuned and enjoy!

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