Most people set goals in January. It’s a brand new calendar year full of possibilities. They join gyms. They quit smoking. I’ve never been one for New Year’s resolutions, personally. And I don’t think goal-setting should be confined to January. For me, in my professional life, July makes more sense. I’ve had my annual review at work, I’ve taken stock of the past year, and it’s time to start focusing on what I want the next 12 months to look like.
So, over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been thinking a lot about my goals for the coming year. I wanted goals that would challenge me. Even if I might not necessarily achieve them, they’d push me to work harder and get outside my comfort zone. I debated whether to publish them here. What if I didn’t reach them? But in the end I decided the added accountability of making them public would outweigh any embarrassment I might feel in the end. So here they are, in no particular order.
I actually debated whether to make this a goal or not, mainly because I’ve wondered about the value of certifications for an experienced DBA. However, in the end, I figured at the very least it would help me round out my knowledge base and get more exposure to those facets of SQL Server I don’t work with regularly. So by next July I’d like to have my MCITP Database Administrator. In order to accomplish this, I plan to spend 2 hours a week studying for the exams. Having this blog is also a great help in solidifying my knowledge. If I’m gonna write about it, I better know about it.
Present at a SQL Saturday
Given the fact that I’ve never presented anywhere, this one is a bit lofty, I admit. But hey, I said I wanted a challenge, right? So far I’ve gotten the ball rolling by volunteering to present at a developer’s forum where I work. And I’ve started bouncing around ideas for a presentation at our local user group. I think my biggest hurdle here is my thinking that I need to present on something no one has done before, that it needs to be super-technical, and that I need to be an expert in the subject. When, in fact, probably none of these is true. So I need to start looking more at topics that interest me, perhaps even how I used feature X to solve problem Y.
Increase this blog’s readership
I started this blog back in February. I averaged 1 hit per day that month. Last month I averaged 14. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad anyone is reading. But, obviously, I’d like more people to be reading. This is my main outlet, after all. So, I plan on doing a few things to help get me there. I want to blog more regularly, at least twice a week. I was doing pretty well with this until the past few weeks when life and work just got away from me. I need to remember that not every post has to be a thesis on SQL Server, it’s ok to have quick, concise posts mixed in. I also need to take a look at how this blog is reflecting my personality and what I can do to make it more… well… me. So hopefully you’ll be seeing some changes around here. Do I have a particular number in mind for this goal? Not really. I don’t think the number itself is important, it’s the work I put into it that matters.
So there they are, my goals for 2011-2012. Happy new year!