Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Why I became a SQL Consultant.

This post is kind of a follow up to my recent "How I became a..." article that I wrote about my early days of a DBA. You can read that post and plenty of others from database professions on this page provided by Kevin Hill. The posts are seriously good reads and although needless to say, I cannot recommend them enough!

This post though is centred on the biggest and most difficult decision that I have ever had to make about my career and that is to quit working as an employee and become a consultant. I've been wanting to write this post for some time and because lately I seem to be getting asked at least half a dozen times a day why I made this decision now seems an ideal time to get it out there.

Firstly I need to paint a bit of a picture of my situation prior to making this change. I was in a great place; brilliant role, fantastic manager (you're welcome), using lots and lots of technology, pretty much everything you could want. Which of course does beg the question, why did I decide to move away from this?

Don't get me wrong, I'd had this sort of vague aspiration for a long time, largely because of the amazing people out there doing seriously great things already and whilst they were (and still are) a big influence on me it wasn't just a case of "hey I want to do that" and off I went. 

I did a lot of thinking about what I enjoyed the most from working with SQL Server and how I could take that forward. For me the most appealing thing has always been helping people get the most from their SQL Servers. As a DBA this can take many forms; it could be installing and configuring SQL Server as part of an entire enterprise solution, or it could be an upgrade to a newer version, performance tuning, bug fixing, implementing HA/DR, training, mentoring etc etc. The point being that whatever I was doing or whoever I was working with the motive was always the same, to make a particular SQL platform better in some shape or form.

Which is exactly how I think as a consultant.

In fact as a consultant I operate in a very similar way only now it's on a larger scale. I still have exactly the same motives as before but whereas in a permanent role I was working within a single instance, now my driver is to help as many organisations as I can with their data platforms. 

In many ways it's like scaling out a database (bear with me) but rather than distributing data I'm distributing my services and (hopefully) doing more work. Of course that comes with its own set of challenges which I will go into on another post.

Since I made the move to consultancy the #1 question I have been asked is why, hence this blog post and the answer is always the same. I've always loved working with SQL Server, with different people and different systems etc so becoming a consultant was a way to expand on that and reach out to even more people and help them achieve what they want with their data platforms.

If you'd like to know more about the consultancy and the services we provide then you can follow this link and by all means if you have any questions, feedback then by all means get in touch, be great to hear from you.

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