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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.

Blogging Thoughts - Part 2

Earlier I wrote Blogging Thoughts - Part 1 where I discussed the various approaches I've seen in blogs (blogging when you learn something new, blog only technical, etc, etc) as part of the work I'm doing to make recommendations to those asking for advice on building a blog. Note that I'm not exactly a blog expert, at this point I'm basing this on a little over a year of blogging - much of it every day - and reading a lot of blogs.

So why do you want to blog? Money, fame, career, or just because? How will you measure success?

Yes, it's worth thinking about measuring success. I'll assume that we all aspire just a bit to fame and fortune, but more likely we're blogging as a way to support our careers. If we blog for a year and get a better job, is that a success? If we get job offers once a week via our blog? It is success if we get a 100 views per post? 1000 views per post? What's a realistic goal? Job offers are easy to measure if they arrive, but how long would we blog waiting for the first one? More likely the blog is just another part of our resume. Is it more/less work to maintain a blog than it is to get a cert or go to a class? Cheaper if nothing else!

So imagine I'm heading out for an interview today. Should I mention that I blog? Would an employer reading this blog find it something that helped them make a positive decision about hiring me, or a negative one? That's the first and most important point that goes into how you blog - it becomes who you are, whether it really is or not! If you blog every 2-3 weeks about learning something new, will they be impressed with what you learned, or not impressed because they think you should have known that already? What if you criticize MS in some way and they are super pro MS? Do you project an image of thinking too highly of yourself?  Of being a deep thinker? Of having a work/life balance?

Ultimately I find few things worse than a blog started and not maintained, or a blog that doesn't seem to have a common thread. Blogs take a certain amount of work, probably 15 minutess per post or more. Not sure you've got the right stuff? Blog into a Word document for 4-6 weeks using whatever style you want to try. If you can stick to it for that long, then it's time to set up a blog somewhere and start putting those posts up. On the other hand if you can't maintain it, you haven't put up a half done blog that may reflect badly on you.

 

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