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A Dark Picture - Management Presentation

It was really Andy Warren's presentation, but he usually ropes me in to add a different perspective on the various things he talks about. Over the years I've joined in on other sessions, though this time I didn't have a lot to say. I was beat and so I let him do most of the talking. He's good at it and this is a good subject about which he's learned a lot.

He paints a dark picture, but that's because he's fairly pragmatic, and he doesn't want to sugar coat things too much. Managing is hard and it's not for everyone. Andy brings up good points and I think things went well. Too often we aren't prepared as technical people, and we don't think about the fact that our intelligence and technical skills aren't applicable here. There are a whole other type of skills that you need to develop.

A lot of the things he talks about, avoiding technical work, not overworking yourself, and more, are things that I've learned the hard way. I did a better job managing the second time around at Peoplesoft, but I still didn't tackle it head on as he did, and wish I'd taken more management training. But I was in a place where I was thinking of leaving, actually looking for a technical job while I was trying to manage.

At the end, Andy did a small survey, with relatively few people changing their mind on being a manager (or not being one), which is interesting. I suspect more than a few people are rethinking things. I bet that a few people were hoping that he had some techniques to make it easier, ways to deal with the overload of work, but a lot of what he said was push back and don't do the technical work. Hard to do at times, but essential, in my mind.

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Steve Jones is the editor of SQLServerCentral.com and visits a wide variety of data related topics in his daily editorial. Steve has spent years working as a DBA and general purpose Windows administrator, primarily working with SQL Server since it was ported from Sybase in 1990. You can follow Steve on Twitter at twitter.com/way0utwest


Posted by Anonymous on 20 November 2008

Went to the intro and keynote yesterday, even though I know better. They weren't bad, they just weren't

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