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Posted Thursday, December 9, 2010 12:17 PM


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Stefan Krzywicki (12/9/2010)

What about someone who's been in the industry a long time and knows a wide variety of technologies to a decent depth if not "guru" level and a good deal about how they interact, does the full lifecycle of the project and has great experience in researching how to do what she or he doesn't know? I'd consider that person senior.


You could, and that's where the line between Level II and Level III can get fuzzy. We've both been through too many interviews\shops to not know that the II/III line is usually subjective.

But my case here wasn't their knowledge as a senior, but their ability to team lead and mentor. It's an additional skillset which is why a II, even a weaker one, can be a 'senior' to a team because of the multiple job tasks actually required to perform that managing position well.

An example: I worked with someone who pretty much was Celko's online personality in real life. Incredible knowledge, absolute ***, yet could make the system spin on his finger like the Globetrotters and had a lot of extra-SQL knowledge that he brought to the table as well. A definate level III.

Our manager was a Level II, skillwise. He certainly hadn't done the necessary deep dives to truly understand the mechanics of the system, but he was more than competant. As you mention, he'd gone around the block a lot and had been in the industry a while. He knew lifecycles, etc etc. He also used the technical knowledge of said III as part of his team leading. He was definately the senior DBA on the team though, even though others had more knowledge and skill.

I would still, however, consider him a level II in skill. Please note: I am, for most tasks, merely a level II, and a Level I in the SSAS/SSRS arena. I am well versed in most of these things as well, and do not consider myself a level III except in very specific topics. However, I can be a Senior DBA, and a Team Lead, and a mentor.

To my understanding (and opinion, I admit), a Level III is as much about being able to do their own research as knowing there's something TO research at that depth. Also, the price for a Level III usually involves the fact that they don't need to do research on 95% of incredibly technical items. You're paying for the speed that they already know it, understand it, and can apply it with little research. This is a rare skill to have across the boards.



- Craig Farrell

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Post #1032653
Posted Thursday, December 9, 2010 2:27 PM
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Great article Craig!

Post #1032738
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 6:01 AM


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NICE! Well done, Craig! This is one of those that should be required reading... especially for recruiters, job seekers, and managers that don't have an SQL background.

--Jeff Moden
"RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for "Row-By-Agonizing-Row".

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Post #1032957
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 7:14 AM


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I currently fall into a similar situation at my employer. I learned the hard way, that I am not a "manager" or "supervisor" sort of person, I just don't have the skillset to motivate people, nor am I able to be the sort of person that "frightens" employees into doing the work needed (which is a bad way to do this, but that's beyond the point.)

But, I am the person at my job who everyone comes to when they can't find the answer. I am the office "geek" who if I don't know, can often either find the answer quickly, or make the call that it's something that another person in the office might have the solution.

I think my "official" job title is currently:
Senior hardware tech / network & server Admin
^There's that "Senior" word again!

Do I consider myself a LvlIII? No, not really. I'd lean more towards LvLII for many things, LvLI for a lot of SQL stuff.

But, I know in general what I do and don't know, and I know where to go to try to find answers to the don't knows, and am willing to say upfront when I don't know something.

Jason
Post #1032997
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 11:00 AM


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Thanks for the article Craig. One note is that too many times people read DBA or Database Developer and pigeon hole a candidate into being exclusively a production dba or development dba. Many times a DBA is a combination of all of the jobs.



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Post #1033141
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 11:56 AM


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CirquedeSQLeil (12/10/2010)
Thanks for the article Craig. One note is that too many times people read DBA or Database Developer and pigeon hole a candidate into being exclusively a production dba or development dba. Many times a DBA is a combination of all of the jobs.


I'd agree in reality this is true. It's also far too much for a Junior to be able to handle. One thing I can hope this article will start to do is get people thinking about removing that generic name and making DBA mean what it's supposed to, rather then the catch-all.



- Craig Farrell

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Post #1033173
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 12:24 PM


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Great article, Craig!

Not only did I enjoy the content of the article I applaud your writing style - clear, concise, well organized. Looking forward to more articles.
Post #1033179
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 12:30 PM


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This was an excellent article! I even forwarded it on to the manager of a company who was asking me for help in determining what sort of skill requirements someone should have so he could screen out potential applicants.
Post #1033184
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 2:04 PM


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Grumpy DBA (12/10/2010)
Great article, Craig!

Not only did I enjoy the content of the article I applaud your writing style - clear, concise, well organized. Looking forward to more articles.


Thank you for that. I must admit Steve Jones helped me out with making sure my rambling stayed where it was supposed to... in my head.



- Craig Farrell

Never stop learning, even if it hurts. Ego bruises are practically mandatory as you learn unless you've never risked enough to make a mistake.

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Post #1033222
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 2:04 PM


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FargoUT (12/10/2010)
This was an excellent article! I even forwarded it on to the manager of a company who was asking me for help in determining what sort of skill requirements someone should have so he could screen out potential applicants.


That just made my day.



- Craig Farrell

Never stop learning, even if it hurts. Ego bruises are practically mandatory as you learn unless you've never risked enough to make a mistake.

For better assistance in answering your questions | Forum Netiquette
For index/tuning help, follow these directions. |Tally Tables

Twitter: @AnyWayDBA
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