Thursday, June 09, 2005

NYOUG June Meeting

I got to the New York Oracle Users Group meeting about 30 minutes early today. As I was reviewing resumes' for my open position, I noticed out the corner of my eye Rachel Carmichael talking to someone about publishing books. I turned around to listen a little more closely and found Rachel talking to AskTom himself; Tom Kyte.

Rachel's keynote talk was titled "Life in the Trenches - Database Administation in the Real World" and was a survival guide to corporate politics. Some of her "pearls of wisdom":

Your job is do do what your boss tells you to do as long as it's not illegal or immoral.
Sure, you were hired as a DBA, but your boss asks you to write report XYZ. Do it and you get your boss' respect and he thinks your a team player.


There will always be somebody who knows more than you. There will always be somebody who knows less than you.

Life is a learning process. Help others learn what you know and others will help you learn.

Train your replacement.
This is actually not the first time I heard this. A former manager, Joe Murphy, always said his job as a manager was to work himself out of a job. His charges grow and he gets to move on to things more critical to the business.

As for Tom Kyte's keynote, lets just say he has a career as a comedian awaiting him when this Oracle gig is up. His presentation was very entertaining while exploring some of the "old school" thinking and how it relates to today's technology. 60 minutes of Tom Kyte and bind variables didn't come up once.

6 comments:

Thomas Kyte said...

But, do you remember:

1) latches are a type of lock...
2) locks are serialization devices..
3) serialization devices inhibit scalability...
4) goto 1)

:)

Amar said...

There will always be somebody who knows more than you. There will always be somebody who knows less than you.

Thats very very true.

Respect the one who knows more and you will know more, repect the one who knows less and you will know more.

Jeff Hunter said...

1) latches are a type of lock...
2) locks are serialization devices..
3) serialization devices inhibit scalability...


How could I forget!!

Nick said...

I've quoted Tom's mantra so often some of the other DBAs at my place are actually starting to believe it!

Don't worry Tom I give them the evidence (are we allowed to use that word yet?).

Doesn't half hack off the third party "my app runs on any database" vendors, so that's an added bonus then!

Rachel said...

It's always interesting to see what people take away from my talks.

Glad I made an impression -- even happier that you learned something. Someone once told me that if people walk away from a presentation you've given with just one new thing they've learned, it was a successful presentation.

Peter K said...

Train your replacement.
This should be the mantra for all including consultants. As a consultant, your job is to transfer your knowledge to the client to ensure that they are self-reliant. As an employee, if you don't you are limiting yourself to your current position. By training your replacement, you are freeing yourself to other opportunities.

Your job is do do what your boss tells you to do as long as it's not illegal or immoral.
I would add to this by saying that if you think it (your boss' request) is not right one, gently present him with your analysis and recommendation but do not marry yourself to that recommendation (i.e. be willing to accept that your boss has the right to make his decision). He's paid to make those decisions.

I would also add that your job is to make your boss look good (i.e. do not hide stuff - good or bad). If there are problems, let him know and also what you are doing to resolve them.