SQL Tact

pointers, solutions and scripts for the SQL DBA
not intended to replace common sense


Announcing the Baton Rouge Power BI User Group

Baton Rouge is home to one of the inaugural Power BI User Groups, starting up soon! I'll be serving as its initial organizer, but I've already received a lot of feedback from the community and hope to form a new leadership team for the group soon.

Power BI is quickly becoming the hub for all things SQL Business Intelligence related, and will soon have both cloud-based and on-premise options. This exciting technology will continue to expand as SQL 2016 is announced. 

Stay tuned for more information on the official website and first meeting of the Power BI user group, which will be in either December or January. We already know that Baton Rouge native and current Microsoft employee Patrick Leblanc, founder of the Baton Rouge SQL Server User Group, will be our virtual speaker in January.

Get involved with Power BI today at the Power BI Community site, and our page here: http://community.powerbi.com/t5/Baton-Rouge-Power-BI-User-Group/gp-p/BRPUG


Congratulations New 2015-2016 BRSSUG Officers!

We elected new officers tonight for the Baton Rouge SQL Server User Group Official PASS Chapter, the second year in a row we've made an effort to do so.

We departed from a singleheaded user group mostly on the shoulders of a single volunteer. Prior to 2014, making things happen for the BRSSUG was mostly on William (me), with sporadic help from volunteers. Prior to 2011, it was mostly on Patrick Leblanc (now with Microsoft), who started the group in <2008, with sporadic help from volunteers like myself,

So the rest of this blog post is intended for the audience of user group leadership, no matter what structure (or lack thereof) your user group leadership takes.

We started electing officers in 2014 (after our annual SQL Saturday) in order to serve four goals:

  1. Capitalize better on enthusiasm in the user group
  2. Foster more ownership-type thinking about the user group, with the hopes of increasing volunteerism
  3. Allow others the career/resume/networking benefits that leadership of a user group can provide
  4. Share the load, Mr Frodo
To be honest, we had mixed results in the first year. We're still rounding out who some tasks should be owned by, and peeling more and more tasks away from myself, and finding the right sense of volunteerism between meetings.

If you're considering having "elections" for user group officers, it's worth a try. Don't be surprised if the spirit of hesitance and collegiality leads all officers to be elected unopposed, with humble candidates try to out-humble eachother to cede victory to the other, or for some folks to run in absentee, or both. And that's totally okay. 

This isn't supposed to be competitive officership. And if someone doesn't "win" an office and still wants to help? Great! As a leader, never shut down this sort of enthusiasm. Find some way to involve and foster that sense of ownership. Then, trust them to get the job done. Trust, but verify.

Remember, enthusiasm is the primary job qualification for volunteer user group leadership.

I'm very excited about our new officers in 2015-2016:
Adrian Aucoin (@CajunSQL) - President
Matthew Tessier (@MatthewTessier2) - VP of Media
Me (@william_A_dba) - VP of Logistics
Kenny Neal (@KennyNeal) - VP of Education and Court Jester

If you're curious (and these aren't original to us), here's the officers we elected tonight. Our buddies in the Baton Rouge .NET User Group elected their four as well.

  •  SQLPass Chapter Leader and SQLPass Representative
  •  Scheduling, Event Planning and Facility
  •  Website announcements (cooperatively with VP of Media)
  •  Officer communication and commitment followup
  •  Social Media communication
VP of Media
  • Website updates, images, photography and announcements
  • Mailing Lists spamming
  • Lead Social Media (especially Twitter, Facebook, new outlets, brand management)
VP of Logistics
  • Host facility communication/logistics/cleanup organization
  • Organizing/verifying Monthly Food order
  • Swag/prize receiver and collector
  • Purchaser/Accounts Payable 
VP of Education
  • Books requests from various book publishers or training providers
  • Applications for freebees, sponsorships, giveaways
  • Work with regional UG's to arrange speaking tours
  • Organize study groups, certification prep groups, other learning opportunities
Shared Officer Responsibilities
  • Speaker recruitment and centralized scheduling
  • UG sponsor recruitment and centralized scheduling
  • Act as master of ceremonies for UG meetings, raffle giveaways


Presentation Downloads from SQL Saturday Columbus GA 2015

Thanks for joining us at SQL Saturday Columbus today on a gorgeous day to go inside and learn about SQL Server! And even bigger congrats to those of you who use Google maps and were still able to find the brand new event location at the Troy State University Riverfront campus!

My colleagues Cody Gros and John Walker joined me on a trek from Louisiana earlier this week and I was so happy to see my SQLSaturday friends, including the great and magnificent SQL Saturday empress Karla Landrum, once again.

A special thanks and job well done to Tim Radney for organizing this top notch event throughout a rough week and the loss of his father. Friends are all over the place Tim, glad so many of us could be here today to tell you this in person instead of from afar. Great job, great facility, great event, great people.

Here are the downloads for two presentations. These presentation files are also available on the SQLSaturday event website.

SQL + SharePoint: Friends Forever (William Assaf and Cody Gros)
12:30pm in room 213

SQL Admin Best Practices with DMVs
3pm in room 310

Downloads here:

Sorry, no, we won't be uploading our Sparkhound Jeopardy game from the lunch session. Can't be giving away all our answers! Er, questions.