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Targeted Learning


Targeted Learning

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Steve Jones
Steve Jones
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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Targeted Learning

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Ken Wymore
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Thanks for making mention of Simon's adventure. After reading day 1 of his OLAP Sprint, I mentioned to my boss how it would be nice to go to PASS with specific objectives in mind. I pointed him towards Simon's posts. He signed off on the idea and we should be going next year.

I like this targeted approach because it gives you a goal so you are actively listening during the presentations and not just grabbing swag and eating free food. Taking ideas back to the hotel after hours and testing them out makes a lot more sense than taking it all in and doing nothing with it with the hopes that it will come in handy later. It's pretty much like school, if you don't apply it quickly then it is in one ear out the other... I went to the Microsoft PDC back in 2003 and we did not have a plan on that trip. Instead we did a lot of wandering around, collecting free items and essentially mooching. We came back with a number of good demo discs and training books but no immediate use for any of it. Subsequently, most of what we were exposed to never made it to production.
GSquared
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And yet again, I find out belatedly that I'm not quite usual/normal.

Never would have occured to me to go to a conference/whatever, without a specific goal and plan in mind. I actually find it annoying when I have to miss one of the presentations I want because it conflicts with another one on my plan. Or when there's a period in the conference where there isn't a presentation that aligns with my plan.

The last conference I went to, I was looking for both BI and scalability. Third session rolled around, there were presentations on DR/BC, T-SQL tuning, something about dealing with salespeople (if I remember correctly), and a few others. But nothing BI or scalability. Frustrated me. (So I went to the T-SQL tuning presentation, and ended up teaching the presenter how deadlocks are resolved and how lock escalation works. Not a total waste of time, but was still frustrating that I wasn't on-plan.)

I just assumed everyone else was doing something comparable.

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Steve Jones
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GSquared (11/28/2012)
And yet again, I find out belatedly that I'm not quite usual/normal.

Never would have occured to me to go to a conference/whatever, without a specific goal and plan in mind.

...

I just assumed everyone else was doing something comparable.


I think lots of people will map out a schedule, but they don't go to the conference with specific goals of what to learn and gain skill on for the week. They don't work on their skill at the conference, which is a shame.

I do think there is a lot of value in networking as well, so this might not be the best approach for everyone, but it certainly is something you ought to consider as an approach to getting funding.

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Simon E Doubt
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I do think there is a lot of value in networking as well, so this might not be the best approach for everyone, but it certainly is something you ought to consider as an approach to getting funding.


Perhaps not surprisingly, networking is much harder to pin down and target as a goal, and yet - as you said - it is so important, and undoubtedly part of the value proposition for the PASS Summit.

I made a point of trying to engage with others during lunch and other social engagements. I found the 'Birds of a Feather' a really great idea, because you knew that you were going to sit down and share thoughts with people who had similar challenges and opportunities. I also found it interesting to chat with experts in fields that I had no exposure to - people working with Share Point, for example.
Steve Jones
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Simon E Doubt (11/28/2012)
I do think there is a lot of value in networking as well, so this might not be the best approach for everyone, but it certainly is something you ought to consider as an approach to getting funding.


Perhaps not surprisingly, networking is much harder to pin down and target as a goal, and yet - as you said - it is so important, and undoubtedly part of the value proposition for the PASS Summit.


One idea is to get the number of contacts up. A friend of mine makes it a point to meet at least 3 people a day and spend 3-5 minutes talking. That may not add up to much, but if you do that across a week, then perhaps you get 1-2 new people you keep in touch with and grow your network.

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Ken Wymore
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Steve Jones - SSC Editor (11/28/2012)
Simon E Doubt (11/28/2012)
I do think there is a lot of value in networking as well, so this might not be the best approach for everyone, but it certainly is something you ought to consider as an approach to getting funding.


Perhaps not surprisingly, networking is much harder to pin down and target as a goal, and yet - as you said - it is so important, and undoubtedly part of the value proposition for the PASS Summit.


One idea is to get the number of contacts up. A friend of mine makes it a point to meet at least 3 people a day and spend 3-5 minutes talking. That may not add up to much, but if you do that across a week, then perhaps you get 1-2 new people you keep in touch with and grow your network.


I like that networking idea. I'm making a mental note of that one. I hope they do the birds of a feather discussions again next year. I'm looking forward to that.
jasona.work
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I like the thought of targeted learning. I've not gone to many conferences like PASS (OK, I've been to *1,* the SQL in the City, and a few MS "meet the new features" Technet events) but I'm looking at funding my own way to the 2013 PASS Summit. Time to look over this years to get an idea as to what I might want to do while there.

As for growing my "network" my biggest issue is I tend to be rather introverted and tend to "keep to myself." I did OK at the SQL in the City (it helped that the lunch area was rather small, it made me interact) but I never did get to exchanging contact info with anyone...

Maybe next time.
Jason A.
Ken Wymore
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I'm introverted as well which is why I like the idea of the birds of a feather sessions where you get to discuss issues with people who are dealing with the same things. It instantly gives you more common ground than just being in the same place at the same time.
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