It’s Not Too Late

Azure, Professional Development, Red Gate Software, SQL Server 2016
You know you want to go on the SQL Cruise. You can. You just have to convince the boss that it's worth doing. It is. I've said it before and I'll repeat it as necessary, SQL Cruise changes peoples lives. I've watched people go on the cruise with a job and come back with a career. People don't just learn on the Cruise. They get energized. They get engaged with the data professional community. How do I profit by promoting SQL Cruise? I don't. Tim Ford is a friend and I'm supporting him. My company, Redgate Software, is a sponsor of the cruise, so I'm supporting them. I could just be doing the bare minimum in support of these parties. However, I'm not getting paid anything special by anyone for doing more.…
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Book Review: Connected

Professional Development
I heard about Connected from a show on NPR (Yes, I listen to NPR, why do people keep saying that?). It was right after another segment talking about how positivity affects your mood and your ability to think and act in a clear fashion. I've long been a believer in the ability of your network to impact you, but I really didn't think about it beyond that. Hearing about the book Connected changed my thinking, so I ran out (meaning, connected to Amazon) and got a copy. The premise of the book is pretty simple. You have close friends and acquaintances. Your close friends and acquaintances also have friends and acquaintances, that may or may not over lap with yours. Those people also have another set of friends and acquaintances.…
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Resolutions: Outcome

Professional Development
Earlier this year, I wrote a post about my upcoming plans for the year in response to a question asked by Jen McCown (flat out, one of my favorite people, blog|twitter). It was supposed to be about resolutions, but I just don’t make those. I make plans. Here we are, close to a year later (11 months). How did the plans work out? The first one, hinted at the time, was to start a new job. Well, that’s done and it’s going swimmingly, thank you very much. The job has turned out to be harder than I thought it was going to be. I travel more than I thought I was going to travel (although we’re keeping it within the limits we agreed to, I love my new company). Frankly,…
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Meme Monday: SQL Family

Professional Development
Tom LaRock’s (blog|twitter) question this month: What does #sqlfamily mean to me? Wow… Geez Tom, couldn’t you ask a hard question for once? Hmmm… Just saying #sqlfamily and a whole series of images of people flashes through my head. And those images are accompanied by all sorts of fun, amazing, interesting situations. And you know what, they’re all very positive. I don’t have flashes of people I dislike or bitter acrimony or really strange relationships. In short, maybe it’s not a family. I have a huge, complex, and very extended real-life family. When I compare that to my #sqlfamily, parts of the real family don’t shine quite so bright as that #sqlfamily does (parts, of course, shine brighter, I love my family). The #sqlfamily is impressive. I get so much…
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Book Review: Guerilla Leader, T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt

Professional Development
As part of my commitment to read and review 12 books in an effort to be active in my own personal development, a commitment made on the SQL Cruise back in June, I’ve completed another book, Guerrilla Leader: T. E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt by James J. Schneider. This was not the book I was scheduled to read. I’m still reading it, but, frankly, it’s boring. This book came to my attention, a history book that is also an exploration of leadership, and I got excited. I’ve long been a student of history and I’ve had a fascination for World War I for a long time. I have over twenty books on the subject that I’ve read. So the chance to combine reading about a subject that I already…
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Book Review: Smarter, Faster, Cheaper

Professional Development, SQLServerPedia Syndication
In my continuing quest to not get personal visits from Buck Woody (blog|twitter) I’m making sure that I make good on my commitment to read 12 personal development books in 12 months. We’re up to #4 (again demonstrating the degree of fear that Buck can put in a person) and the book is Smarter, Faster, Cheaper: Non-Boring, Fluff-Free Strategies for Marketing and Promoting Your Business by David Siteman Garland (blog|twitter). The extended title on the book covers what it’s about quite well. David Garland is considered one of the top marketers these days and he seems to follow the processes laid out in his book. I say this because I received a tweet from him after I tweeted that I’d finished reading the book. One of the processes laid out…
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Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us

Professional Development
I’ve finished my 3rd book as part of my year long commitment to read and review professional/personal development books. I read one of my favorite authors this time, Seth Godin and his book, Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us . I’ve either been very smart or very lucky in my choice of books. I’ve enjoyed all three. But this one was better than the other two. Then again, this is my third Seth Godin book, I think I’m predisposed to enjoying his writing. The core idea behind the book is predicated on two facts. First, humans tend to congregate, we’re social critters. Second, you can take the lead of your tribe. Easy stuff, right? Wrong. It’s complicated and weird and hard. The book doesn’t even remotely suggest otherwise. This…
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Strengths Finder 2.0

Misc
I’ve made the commitment to read and review 12 books over 12 months as a part of continuous personal development. This is my second book. While this is a book review, the first thin you need to know is that the Strengths Finder 2.0 book is actually just a written, in-depth, support document for the test that you take on the StrengthsFinder web site.The core idea to the test and the book is to identify your strengths and work on them instead of spending all kinds of time trying to fix your weaknesses. If you just think about it a little bit, it makes sense that you can spend days and weeks trying to improve in an area where you are not terribly strong while improvement in areas where you…
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Time for a Little PD

Misc, SQLServerPedia Syndication
No, PD doesn’t stand for PowerShell Development. It stands for Professional Development. Sharks either swim or die (and yes, I know that’s not 100% accurate, but I need a hook on which to hang this lesson). Knowledge workers either develop more knowledge or become buggy whip manufacturers. It’s that simple. Keep moving/learning or die/become obsolete. I’m voting for continuing to learn. In keeping with this, during SQL Cruise Alaska (I’ll be posting more on my thoughts about the trip), I was privileged to sit through Buck Woody’s (blog|twitter) presentations on “Three C’s on the High Seas.” Buck is a great teacher and not at all afraid to hand out homework, which he did before and during the cruise. Confession time, I did fail to do one pre-cruise assignment and Buck…
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