I went over last night to do a presentation to the group managed by Bonnie and Lynn. Had 11 in attendance, very good for a group that only recently started and in a smaller city. Had planned to get over there an hour early for some quality Starbucks time first, but ran late and got there just in time for a quick sandwich and then to the meeting. After the usual group kick off intro, launched into my usual free form not really following the slides presentation style and we had a lot of fun talking about statistics and the basics of query plans. Interestingly, most of the group were more development focused and one was a true novice - and I'm not complaining about that! Evangelizing SQL is always good, and I appreciate those that are willing to spend time learning things that might help them at some point. I was scheduled for an hour but knew that there was extra time available, so we ran about 75 minutes, and then moved into a discussion about networking.
If you've been following my blog you'll know that one of my current interests is networking and I look for chances to poll technical audiences. I asked first mind you, and everyone wanted to talk, so we did. About the same results as I had from the oPASS meeting earlier this week as far as interest and tools. I changed one question, asking first how many are good at networking and only had 2 people say that they thought they were, and then asked how many had received network training - none. I think that's pretty real, some of us have natural networking ability or learned it by working with someone who did. A couple were working on blogs, and I had the usual range of responses about whether to mix personal and professional stuff in a blog, with most opting for a blog to have touches that make it personal (human), to show the person behind the writing. Here again that I think if you start by engaging them in conversation and then talk about networking you get much better results than just asking them to introduce themselves or to each other.
Afterward most of the crowd met up for a drink and discussion, and that was nice as well. Not all groups do that, this one has a nice dynamic and it was nice to feel like part of the group and just talk socially for a while before the hour plus drive home!
Kendal Van Dyke is headed over to present to them next month, and Jack Corbett is going over later in the year (Sep I think).