So that is about the only word I can use to sum up how I feel about last night’s meeting.
We had about 45 of #BIHappyHour in the hotel lobby, it was a little cramped but we were not moving into the open spaces very well. In the future will will do a better job of herding folks into more open space. It warmed my heart to see so many people chatting and introducing themselves. Our food was delivered, special thanks to my Dad and my husband for going to pick it up! I thought the food was awesome and I didn’t get to eat any of it until after 9pm when we got home. We spent 10-15 minutes at the beginning of the meeting doing introductions, thanking sponsors, thanking the Sharepoint UG and the Excel UG and reviewing the PASS February Chapter Deck. Then it was off to discussing what to do with this new group, how to grow it into a community. We got a lot of great feedback, here are a few of the suggestions
- Host guest blog post on the nashbi.sqlpass.org site to help people get started.
- WE LOVED this idea and will work on getting it implemented ASAP!
- Yammer, as a way to communicate with others and get help/answers to questions.
- Meeting locations
- South of Nashville was the general consensus
- Places like Brentwood Library, Vaco, Microsoft, ComData, HCA, Tractor Supply and a few others were suggested.
- Topic ideas were across the board
- Kimball Architecture, ETL, Automation (UT, automating testing), a lot of start to finish suggestions, big data and other technologies
After this we let Craig Utley take the stage. He did an amazing job and the feedback on his session was overwhelming positive! What a great way to start a new user group.
My food for thought and take away items from this first meeting.
I am glad that I was prepared! When I ordered the food I was told I would receive exactly 50 plates, 50 sets of silverware, napkins and serving utensils. What we got was NO napkins, no serving utensils and I packaged up the left over silverware to find we have 170 pieces left. Many think I am a pack rat, always toting along too much stuff where ever I go and always checking a bag when traveling no matter how long I am gone. Well last night it paid off. I had in a giant plastic tote every thing that was needed; 2 packages of paper plates (50~ish), a box of silverware, napkins, roll of paper towel and an entire set of serving utensils. WHEW! Incase you are wondering in the other tote I had emergency batteries and cords to charge phones, display dongle, backup batteries for mice, power strip, and everything else I take when I travel.
Things that we will be doing over the next couple of weeks
- Reviewing all of the feedback forms
- Figuring out a way to track some of this data
- Compiling a list of future topic ideas
- Making sure everyone is signed up to receive meeting notices
- Getting the guest blog spot rolling
- Updating the website with a community blog roll and other useful resources
- Following up with
- Folks who offered to inquire about venues
- Folks who offered to guest blog
- Folks who are interested in speaking
I think personally I will create a check list to follow in prep for each meeting. I need to include things like packing food service supplies and having back up plans. I will also make a venue check list so that we’ll know earlier that the microphone isn’t installed/working. And I think I will just generally leave a reminder for all those helping that sometimes you just have to go with the flow!
If you have known me for very long you know that Kerry and I have been talking about starting a Business Intelligence user group here in Nashville for about a year. At first we were just going to do some additional meetings under the SQL user group’s umbrella. We thought that working as a lager group could be better for both groups. However we finally discovered that BI was huge and there was a lot of interest in it. Just looking at MeetUp there are 3-4 data related groups.
We are pleased to announce the launch of a new PASS chapter here in Nashville. The Nashville Business Intelligence . . . → Read More: Nashville’s newest Pass Chapter
Recapping the Women in Technology Luncheon
As a member of the PASS Women in Technology virtual Chapter I had been on several planning meetings throughout the past year about the luncheon. I had known for some time that they were hoping to secure Kimberly Bryant [ TWITTER | Linkedin ] as our guest speaker.
If you are unaware Kimberly started the organization Black Girls Code [ TWITTER ]. She “hopes to provide young and pre-teen girls of color opportunities to learn in-demand skills in technology and computer programming at a time when they are naturally thinking about what they want to be when they grow up.”
To be perfectly . . . → Read More: WIT Summit 2014
I am live tweeting the #SUMMIT14 #WIT.
During the next week you may find it hard to track me down. But I can tell you with a fair amount of certainty that I will be in these places at the times listed below. If you miss me, just shoot me an email or tweet so I can let you know where I will be. I will try to put updates as I know more.
SQLSaturday Meeting 2p-3:3 Chapter Leader Meeting 3:45p-6 SQL Karaoke 9:30p-?
Regional Mentor Meeting 12-1p
WIT Luncheon 11:45-1:15p OUT OF POCKET 5p-?
QA with the Board 1p-2:15 Community Zone 2p-3
I have written before about Summit and the kind of things to take/pack/do. But I feel that some things have changed and that I am smarter now so I want to revisit this list.
Before a trip we use the dining room table as a place to hold things we want to take and don’t currently need to use. We fondly refer to this as the staging table. I started staging things about a week or so ago. Also make a list of things you don’t want to be without during your trip so you can check it off as it goes in the bag.
If you plan . . . → Read More: Last minute thoughts for Summit 2014
I am so excited and honored to share some exciting news. Last week I got a few burst of good news and I just can’t keep it inside any more. Honestly I just wanted to SING out loud.
I have been officially accepted into the Dun & Bradstreet MVP program. I am so delighted to have this honor and I am looking forward to the great things we can do together!!!
Of course I am not getting an Grammy or anything but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t get 30 seconds to thank a few folks. First OMG a great big thanks to Kim Schmidt [ FACEBOOK | Twitter . . . → Read More: What an honor.
Microsoft announced last week the name of its new all in one conference that would take the place of several other items, one of which is TechEd. There is still one last chance to attend a TechEd, Europe conference but it starts on October 28 and it in Barcelona Spain. MS Ignite will happen May 2015 in Chicago. But honestly that isn’t what I wanted to talk about.
For the last 2 years I have attended TechEd and represented PASS at their booth on the vendor floor. 2013 was spectacular! Our booth saw a lot of traffic. People coming by asking technical questions, learning about SQLSaturday and finding local chapters. . . . → Read More: Farewell TechEd
I have been playing with Power BI items lately and have found some really good uses and some really big shortcomings. But today while I was playing with something an idea popped into my head. As a SQLSaturday organizer I found creating the schedule for print was a PITA. I have seen people just print the screen, which makes blowing it up to poster size a bit of a mess. I had to cut and paste, fix, format and it ends up a hot mess like below so I think I ended up just typing it.
So let me give you a better option. This is so easy I . . . → Read More: SQLSaturday Schedule printing, now made easier.
AKA: Why I haven’t gotten certified.
I have never really been one to worry about how many acronyms you could tag after your name. And to be quite honest it never really mattered to me how big those letters actually were, because at the end of the day you put your pants on the same way I do every single morning. But that isn’t what I want to post about.
I have been asked before why I don’t spend some of this current free time working on getting certified. All this time I have deferred the question and made up excuses I really never thought it through until recently. Last . . . → Read More: I’m not that kind of smart