T-SQL Tuesday #133 What (Else) Have You Learned from Presenting
T-SQL Tuesday is the brainchild of Adam Machanic (Blog | Twitter). December 2009 was the first T-SQL Tuesday invitation that went out by Adam. It is a monthly blog party on the second Tuesday of each month. Currently, Steve Jones (Blog | Twitter) organises the event and maintains a website with all previous posts which you can find here. Everyone is welcome to participate in this monthly blog post.
This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is hosted by Lisa Griffin Bohm (Blog | Twitter). Lisa invites us to share something technical THAT DID NOT RELATE to the topic of the presentation, that you’ve learned in writing or giving the presentation. This can include a work presentation, for those of you who haven’t spoken at an event!.
I don’t often present
Ok, so that’s not strictly true, I very regularly hold talks, presentations, and facilitate planning sessions, whiteboards sessions, but I haven’t ventured into public speaking other than a short lightning talk back in 2019 (how many years ago was that….?).
I am however, involved as much as I can with the data community behind the scenes. I’m a helper at the award winning UK conference SQLBits , and have been a helper at Data Relay in Bristol and more recently moderated at not one, but two fantastic #DataWeekender events. I also started a data user group in Cardiff back when the most well known Corona came with a lime!
What have I learnt?
Well the most valuable thing I can talk about is what I’ve learnt about our contract with the speakers. In the case of many of the current pop up events and user groups available, you will be able to listen to a wide range of topics for free. There is quite a lot of effort on the part of speakers to prepare for these talks whether it is researching a topic, preparing content, preparing labs and of course, the presenting itself.
Our side of the contract is simple enough - provide them with feedback on their talks! Did you feel that this slide didn’t quite hit the mark? Would you like to have seen a little bit more time spent on this widget? Speaker talking too fast? Font didn’t work for you? Have CVD, the colour pallette doesn’t work? Appreciate the effort put in to provide captions? Really, really enjoy it? Spare a few minutes to let them know!
You will get better content
Not only will you benefit the speaker, you will in turn benefit your future self. Here’s how feedback helps the community at large;
You will make a speaker happy
Look at the difference some feedback makes :)
So there you go! Remember the next time you attend an event, in return for the cool stuff you learn, make a speaker happy and give them some feedback. It doesn’t matter if it’s negative or positive, just make sure it’s constructive #makeaspeakerhappy