Over the past few weeks, I saw on social media that many of my #sqlfamily members were not attending the PASS Member Summit conference this year. It made me want to blog about why I am attending this year.
Many years ago, I heard that the PASS Member Summit conference could change your career as a data professional. I thought that statement was a great marketing pitch until I attended for the first time in 2011. These days, I get more excited for other people than myself. With that said, here are three reasons why I am attending this year’s PASS Summit.
Local Grass Roots
Being a chapter leader, I always want to do everything I can to help my local user members, and I love seeing them succeed and grow. In fact, it’s been fun watching some of the members grow professionally and in the community. One of Austin’s Finest SQL Server presenters, Lance Tidwell will be doing a full session at 3:30 pm on Friday on Parameter Sniffing the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. There is not another session I look forward to seeing more this year (Yes, I am also presenting but luckily not at the same time as Lance).
The Dream I Never Had
After coming back from my very first PASS Summit in 2011, I had all kinds of thoughts on how my career would evolve. I had dreams of making six figures, working from home, being my boss. I even had mentors in the PASS community who helped me realize all those dreams were possible. I never imagined that I would hire my first my first employee directly from conversations I had with a local user group member. I tried to help Angela Tidwell (Yes, Lance’s wife) break into the IT field a few times. After several conversations, I learned we could help each other out so this week Angela became my second employee. Angela is at the PASS Member Summit this week as a first timer. I hope I can do a good job introducing her to everyone just like Tom LaRock did for me when I was a first timer.
If you are at the PASS Member Summit and you see Angela, please say hello. Just please don’t do it during the middle of Lance’s session on Friday.
The Speaker That Almost Never Presented
Many years ago, I had a boss who I knew would be a great speaker in the PASS Community. Like most people, he was afraid of public speaking. I had to dare him to go to the local Pittsburgh SQL Server User Group with me and co-present. When I say co-present, I meant just stand next to me and share some real-world stories while I do demos. Now he is speaking at the PASS Member Summit for the second time in a row. I love being able to say I knew him when. Now he is a superstar, and I look forward to watching him succeed and continue to grow in the SQL Server Community.
[Update 9:48 PST]
Why are you attending this year’s PASS Member Summit? I would love to hear your reasons. If you couldn’t make it this year you can still watch parts of the conference live on the internet.