What an opportunity!

Late on Friday afternoon I happened to be lurking on Twitter when I couldn’t believe what I was reading.  No, nothing political or even a cute animal video.  SQL Skills was giving away a seat in their upcoming October training class!  Then I read the details and thought “I could do that”.  I have been trying to get back to take the IEPTO2 class for the past 2 years.  It has been almost 2 years since I was privileged to attend the IEPTO1 class.

If you have been at all involved with SQL Server administration, you should know about SQL Skills.com. They are one of the preeminent consultants and trainers in the SQL Server technology realm.  In 2013 I had my first real opportunity to attend PASS Summit in Charlotte N.C.  I had been attending SQL Saturdays  for a number of years (Been to every one in Richmond VA and Washington D.C.) and it was at one of these that a speaker (and now #SQLFamily member) Kevin Kline talked about the great resources available from the SQL Skills team.  I downloaded and watched all of the MCM videos (many still applicable today and not as dated as you might think).  I thought to myself, If I ever get a chance to hear Paul or Kimberly or Glenn or Erin or Jonathan (Tim hadn’t joined the team yet) in person I would jump at the chance! Then it happened! I got to meet and hear Each of them speak at PASS Summit 2013.  The biggest reason I got to attend Summit 2013 was that it was within driving distance (6 hours) of my home.  Up until I joined my current employer I worked as a Department of Defense contractor and training/travel were never “included in the contract” so Seattle was out of reach for me.  Fortunately for me I had attended a SQL Saturday session by Andy Warren on establishing a budget for your training.  I made the commitment soon afterwards that I would not rely on my current or future employers to provide training or funding.  It was up to me to improve my skills and that meant more than just “free” training.  (Paying for a PluralSight subscription is my first recommendation!)

This leads to my answer for “Why you’d make the best use of the knowledge you’ll get from being in the class”  To be a more efficient, effective DBA? of course! But more than that would be sharing this level of in depth knowledge with the rest of the SQL Server DBA team at my current employer.  I have been able to give several “brown bag sessions” at work and have always gotten positive feed back from my team mates. While I have only spoken once (to my local user) group it is something I really enjoy doing and plan on doing more in the future (Erin’s post was an inspiration!)

As for my ‘favorite performance tuning challenge” it is having the confidence to know where to start and being able to eliminate some (if not all) of the “red herrings” that so often plague beginning performance tuners.  Yes, I have often been guilty of “knee jerk” performance tuning but much less so after IEPTO1 and I hope to further reduce that reaction after IEPTO2.

Bottom line is a big “Thank You!” to the folks at SQL Skills for everything they provide to help make me a better DBA.  (And Paul has provided some great book recommendations as well!)

Lastly  as a shameless attempt to curry favor with Paul

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