PASS Data Community Summit is coming up like an out of control freight train. Another couple of weeks and it'll be here. I'm excited about it every year and I really hope to see you there. Please, consider this a personal invite to say hi if you see me around. I'm bringing all this up because I've been incredibly lucky in the friendships I built with people I met at Summit. I want to take a moment to talk about the importance of friendship in your career.
On one level, you could say that we're all in competition for the same jobs. It's not something I believe, but there are those who do. Then, there's another idea. While, sure, there's a little competition locally, maybe a fight for a promotion or a cool project, there is way more work out there than those of us who are even remotely qualified can handle. What's more, with this constantly shifting technology landscape, even if today we're qualified, tomorrow we might not be. So, we're not in competition. In fact, the very best thing we can do for ourselves and our careers, and I'm talking pure selfishness here, is to make a few friends in the industry.
Because you can't learn it all. You can't. However, having a bunch of friends who also work in the industry, you've got resources for the stuff you don't know. Sure, you can post questions on the forums (I regularly haunt them, trying to help out) and you'll probably get an answer. Maybe use the #sqlhelp or #pghelp hashtags on Twitter to get a quick answer. But, a friend can give you an answer even quicker. Plus, be around for follow-up questions. Heck, even more important, they can be a shoulder to cry on, a mentor, a sounding board for ideas, all these things. Further, you can help them with all of the same. That's what friends do.
As I say, I've made some incredible friendships through my years of involvement at the PASS Data Community Summit. I've also made a few at SQLSaturday, Techorama, DataMinds Connect, SQL Bits, and other events, all around the world. If you can't make it to Summit, make it to another event, even a local meetup. While there, talk to people (yeah, I know). Make some friends in this industry. It'll be good for you. It'll be good for them. It'll be good for all of us. I truly believe a rising tide lifts all boats. The more we connect with one another and share, the better off we all are.