Sri Sridharan is my old friend and we often talk on GTalk. The subject varies from Life in India/USA, movies, musics, and of course SQL. We have our differences when we talk about food or movie but we always agree when we talk about SQL. Yesterday while chatting with him we talked about SQLPASS and the conversation lasted for a long time. Here is the conversation between us on GTalk. I have removed a few of the personal talks and formatted into paragraphs as GTalk often shows stuff out of formatting.
Pinal: Sri, Congrats on running for the PASS BoD again. You were so close last year. What made you decide to run again this year?
Sri: Thank you Pinal for your leadership in the PASS India Community and all the things you do out there. After coming so close last year, there was no doubt in my mind that I will run again. I was truly humbled by the support I got from the community. Growing up in India for over 25 years, you are brought up in a very competitive part of the world. Right from the pressure of staying in the top of the class from kindergarten to your graduation, the relentless push from your parents about studying and getting good grades (and nothing else matters), you land up essentially living in a pressure cooker. To survive that relentless pressure, you need to have a thick skin, ability to stand up for who you really are , what you want to accomplish and in the process stay true those values.
I am striving for a greater cause, to make PASS an organization that can help people with their SQL Server careers, to make PASS relevant to its chapter members, to make PASS an organization that every SQL professional in the world wants to be connected with. Just because I did not get elected or appointed last year does not mean that these causes are not worth fighting. Giving up upon failing the first time is simply not in me. If I did that, what message would I send to those who voted for me? What message would I send to my kids?
Pinal: As someone who has such strong roots in India, what can the Indian PASS Community expect from you?
Sri: First of all, I think fostering a regional leadership is something PASS must encourage as part of its global growth plan. For PASS global being able to understand all the issues in a region of the world and make sound decisions will be a tough thing to do on a continuous basis. I expect people like you, chapter leaders, regional mentors, MVPs of the region start playing a bigger role in shaping the next generation of PASS. That is something I said in my campaign and I still stand by it.
I would like to see growth in the number of chapters in India. The current count does not truly represent the full potential of that region. I was pretty thrilled to see the Bangalore SQLSaturday happen early this year. I would like to see more of SQLSaturday events, at least in the major metro cities. I know the issues in India are very different from the rest of the world. So the formula needs to be tweaked a little for it to work better in India.
Once the SQLSaturday model is vetted out, maybe there could be enough justification to have SQLRally India. PASS needs to have a premier SQL event in that region. Going to USA or Europe for that matter is incredibly hard due to VISA issues etc. So this could be a case of where PASS comes closer to where the community is.
Pinal: What portfolio would take on if you are elected to the PASS Board?
Sri: There are some very strong folks on the PASS Board today. The President discusses the portfolios with the group and makes the final call on the portfolios. I am also a fan of having a team associated with the portfolios. In that case, one person is the primary for a portfolio but secondary on a couple of other portfolios. This way people on the board have a direct vested interest in a few portfolios.
Personally, I know I would these portfolios good justice – Chapters, Global Growth and Events (SQLSat, SQLRally). I would try to see if we can get a director to focus on Volunteers. To me that is very critical for growth in the international regions.
Pinal: This is an interesting conversation with you Sri. I know you so long time but this is indeed inspiring to many. India is a big country and we appreciate your thoughts.
Sri: Thank you very much for taking time to chat with me today. Cheers.
There are pretty strong candidates for SQLPASS Board of Elections this year. I know all of them in person and honestly it is going to be extremely difficult to not to vote for anybody. I am indeed in a crunch right now how to pick one over another. Though the choice is difficult, I encourage you to vote for them. I am extremely confident that the new board of directors will all have the same goal – Better SQL Server Community.
Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com)