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.