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SQLAndy

I'm Andy Warren, currently a SQL Server trainer with End to End Training. Over the past few years I've been a developer, DBA, and IT Director. I was one of the original founders of SQLServerCentral.com and helped grow that community from zero to about 300k members before deciding to move on to other ventures.

Mini Review: Building Technical User Communites by Greg Low

I had the chance to see Greg do a presentation at the PASS Summit in Denver that was based on the book and so decided to grab a copy from Amazon. It's a small book, 118 pages, and fairly inexpensive, about $16 online. I've already learned quite a few lessons about managing a user group from my involvement with oPASS but in truth most were learned the hard way. This book came across as eminently usable because I saw many of the mistakes we made and their solutions listed. It also has a lot of interesting ideas we hadn't learned yet too! For example, the author says that just by personalizing email reminders (Dear Andy..) he saw in increase in the number of replies. You'd think we IT types would be immune to such things but apparently not. Overall he focuses on taking a pragmatic approach and emphasizes low tech over high tech - not because he dislikes technology, but because the emphasis has to be on people. Given a limited amount of time, spend it on people and not the technology. It's definitely worth buying if you manage a user group, and maybe even worth buying if you're a member of a group that seems a bit dysfunctional.

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