Black Friday Wishes

It’s traditionally Black Friday in the US today, with big sales kicking off the Christmas season. This year, many companies have taken different approaches, with the pandemic and separation. Plenty of online training from SQL experts has been on sale and available, and there are certainly other deals to be had.

I recently ran across a list on 10 tech holiday gifts that will delight your employees. I don’t know that I want any of these, and some of these are quite extravagant for an employee gift. At least, it feels that way to me.

Today, I’m wondering if there is something you wish your employer would give you this holiday season, other than a bonus. Is there some tech gift that you’d appreciate?

I used to manage technical people. At different times in my career, I’ve had different size teams, but I always made it a point to give a small gift at Christmas to my staff. I appreciated their efforts and work, and I felt it was important to let them know. I never gave big gifts, usually setting a limit of US$20-25 per person. With some teams as large as 12, this wasn’t inexpensive.

I did make an effort to think about each person, and get something slightly tailored to them. Usually I had some theme, and people got similar gifts, but with a bit of personalization. These days, I don’t manage people, but I do help my wife get gifts together for her clients.

Let me know today if you think there is anything you’d like, and feel free to forward this to your management. Maybe they’ll take the hint.

Steve Jones

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Daily Coping 27 Nov 2020

I started to add a daily coping tip to the SQLServerCentral newsletter and to the Community Circle, which is helping me deal with the issues in the world. I’m adding my responses for each day here.

Today’s tip is to broaden your perspective: read a different paper, magazine, or site.

Many of us tend to get caught in bubbles of information. Google/Bing do this, bringing us certain results. We have a set group of people on social media, and often we read the same sites for news, information, fun, etc.

The US election took place recently, and it was a contentious one. Like many, I was entranced with the process, the outcome, and the way the event unfolded. I have some sites for news, and a subscription, but I decided to try something different since I was hoping for other views.

In particular, I gave CNN a try at CNN.com. I haven’t been thrilled with their television program for years, as I think they struggle to find new and interesting things to day and still fill 24 hours. However, I saw some ratings about how people around the world view the site, and it’s fairly neutral.

I also grabbed a new book, Dirt, after hearing someone talk about it on NPR. It’s a book by a writer that moves to France to learn French cooking. A little out of my area, and I struggled to get into this book, but eventually it turned a corner, and I enjoyed hearing about how the writer blends cooking, chefs, ingredients, and life in a foreign country.

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Thanksgiving 2020

Today is Thanksgiving in the US. I wrote a bit yesterday about my thanks at work, but today I want to just say that I’m grateful my family is healthy and we can mostly be together. My oldest is in Spain, and we’re all thinking of him and missing him, but we’re also happy he’s on an adventure in life for the next year.

Please remember those that are important to you today, whether it’s a holiday for you or not.

Life is short. Appreciate the time and people you have while you can.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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Daily Coping 26 Nov 2020

I started to add a daily coping tip to the SQLServerCentral newsletter and to the Community Circle, which is helping me deal with the issues in the world. I’m adding my responses for each day here.

Today’s tip is to tell someone how you’re grateful for them in your life.

It’s Thanksgiving, a day traditionally in the US where we give some thanks. Lots of people do this all month, picking something each day. My family does this at dinner, each of us giving a few things we’ve been thankful for this year.

However, this is something you ought to do regularly with those in your life for whom you are grateful. Partners, kids, parents, boss, employee, etc. Remember to appreciate things, and people, in your life.

I do try to let some people know that I an grateful, but not enough. I’d hope I remember to do this monthly, if not more often. There are a lot of people I am grateful for.

In this case, for today, I’m remembering to tell me wife how grateful I am to have her in my life, for all the help, support, love, and joy she brings.

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