PASS Update #62

Our most recent Board meeting was Aug 11 & 12 in Ft Lauderdale (located so we could attend SQLSaturday on Saturday). The week started with our management company deciding to change plans and attend by phone instead of in person. In person meetings are where we hope collaboration gets done, having anyone on the phone is a distraction more than a help. More importantly, this decision was made without input from the Board, a troubling precedent.

We did accomplish some good during the meeting. We finally passed the 2012 budget after we got answers for Allen Kinsel on some areas where he wasn’t clear on how some totals were reached, and that included reviewing the salary rates for various staff positions.

The budget process also made clear how easy it is to fail as a board member. I’ve tried to be diligent during the two previous years I’ve voted on budgets, but this year I asked for some numbers and just didn’t have time to follow up as I should have. Allen Kinsel dug in and found some areas that needed review, and to be honest it embarrassed me. Not often I get outworked, and this was work that needed to be done. We’re talking – again – about how to do a better job on this process next year, and Douglas presented a rough draft of that process towards the end of the meeting. For all that it is good to have a budget done.

Another win was appointing three non-voting international members to our Board. James Rowland-Jones, Rob Farley, and Raoul Illyés were selected following a meeting held in Sweden to discuss PASS and our international efforts. I don’t think we’ve got notes from that meeting posted, but it was a huge win for us,lots of good stuff to help us grow into other countries,and I’m thrilled that they are joining us.

We discussed doing more to support precons at SQLSaturday, something I believe fits well into our ‘farm club’ system. It was hard to get a consensus on this, but in the end there is money budgeted to do more and I’ll be working on that effort between now and the Summit. (Note to SQLSaturday leads, it will be optional but interesting!)

Friday afternoon I did my brief presentation on the role of committees in moving from a mostly tactical role to a more strategic/some tactical role. At a high level everyone was interested, so after we wrapped up at 3 pm we did an hour workshop with Bill Graziano, Allen Kinsel, Geoff Hiten, Mark Ginnebaugh, and Tom LaRock, and based on that we’re kicking around a trial implementation for a single committee. More on that soon.

We wrapped up the official meeting around 4 pm on Friday.