And here it all starts, my very first blog of any kind so thought it best start with what tipped me over the edge to actually do something about it. I'm lucky enough to work with the Welsh legend that is Gethyn Ellis https://www.gethynellis.com, and he tagged me in a post asking us to blog about what is the best bit of career advice that we've had over the years. There wasn't even alcohol involved* for me to agree to starting a blog and actually doing it.
I've thought long and hard as like most of us who have been around this technology for a while, there has been so much to try and remember. For me it stands out as one particlar thing...
"Don't be that guy"
Now, i'm quoting direct and times and languages change so it should be "Don't be that person", but you get my meaning. But what do I mean?
We all have knowledge right? Along with differing levels of experience , skillset, specialities and so on. But one person does not know absolutely everything. Collectively (ie... this magnificent SQL community), we can get pretty damn near between us, and this is all down to knowledge sharing.
Ignores Junior members as they don't know anything... WRONG, i've learnt some fantastic things from the greenest of colleagues and will continue to do so.
Ignores / shouts down people in other teams when inter-team collaboration is required...
Thinks they're the biggest fish in the lake. There are MUCH bigger lakes out there... be humble.
Does not share knowledge, "Knowledge is Power" was fine as a catchphrase but someone making themselves feel superior over others by witholding knowledge sucks.
Reinvents the wheel so they know how it works fully rather than learn whats there. We all have solutions we have implemented as a team, or by the team previously. Improve on that with buy-in from others, don't create siloed mini solutions.
Has a default answer of R.T.F.M.. Valid in some cases, but 15 seconds to show where the manual is won't be the death of anyone.
Doesn't write documentation themselves, ironic really considering the point above.
Never says they don't know the answer to something.
I could go on, but you get my drift...
My internal monologue has this person speaking like "Comic Book Guy" from the Simpsons.
Obviously, if they're the boss, then a diplomatic level of delicacy is required. I've worked in teams like this, where DBAs were universally hated, a bit of friendlyness goes a long way.
Work as a team, share what you know, take time to discuss to others the what and why.
Explain reasonings why if you don't agree with something?
Talk to other teams, don't just fire messages and emails across to them as this often loses context and personality. If you're in the office, go and find them to discuss something over a coffee. Just doing this alone has massively helped the perception of the team in more than one of my previous roles.
Help new starters. We've all been there, it can be daunting until you get your feet under the table.
Admit when you don't know something, its not a sign of weakness. If its valid, then find out the answer and share. Also be open if you used your Google-Fu skills to find out answers. It's not a disclaimer, its just a resource to use.
Granted, and purely in my opinion, I.T. used to have more of a stigmatism attached where techies were "less approachable" shall we say and DBA stood for "Don't Bother Asking".
Thats no longer the case...times change, and for the better I think.
And hereby endeth my very first blog post. Future entries will be more technical, honest gov'ner.
* Does not necessarily mean that alcohol was not involved.