I wrote an email to a group of PASS Summit first timers, and then realized this is good information for the world at large. This week’s first timer theme is “Tips for getting involved in the PASS community. Local Groups, Virtual Groups, SQLSaturdays, Twitter, Slack, volunteering and so on.”
- I have mentioned, I think, that you should get on Twitter and start following speakers and authors and suchlike. That’s point one. I don’t use Slack, so someone else can educate me on the matter.
- You very likely have a local user group near you, that can be of good value. Find out here.
- There are regular, free talks online through the PASS virtual groups.
- I’ve volunteered at an event or two, and it can be fun. More on volunteer stuff here.
Get involved, at least a little
I don’t personally think you have to do all of the above, plus speak, plus run around to half a dozen SQL Saturdays every year…but if it’s your thing, do it! Otherwise it is a good idea to pick up something through the rest of the year.
I’ve been around the techie circles, and for some reason the SQL Server techies tend to be the friendliest and most involved. Even when I was working for the Microsoft support lines, I was surprised to find that ours (SQL) was the absolute chillest group.
Networking…what does that mean?
Also: I’ve always found the term “networking” to be odd and vague. There’s a reason for that: it covers a lot of ground. Networking really does mean getting to know people, getting in contact with people, and (ergh I’m going to say the phrase) building relationships, both for their own sake, and with the possibility in mind that one of you could do the other person some good. That might mean an introduction somewhere, or finding out about a new resource, getting the answer to a question, or a lead on a new job.
In short: get yourself involved, somewhere. It does a body good.