Re: Definition of Top Class DBA

  • From: Seth Miller <>
  • To: oracledbaquestions@xxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2014 11:15:54 -0500

Really great points here. I'll add another one that is very important but
nothing to do with knowledge.

Every one of us reading these emails has done something to disrupt
business; dropped a production table, compressed a live data file, rm -rf
on the wrong directory (yes I've done all of these). This is part of the
learning process and inherent in the nature of what we do. The important
part comes afterward.

The professional owns up to their mistakes, regardless of the consequences
or even if the problem can't be traced back to them. It only takes one time
of someone blaming a colleague, another group or just outright lying about
an incident to make that person unreliable and untrustworthy.

There may be blowback at the beginning but people will respect someone who
takes the more difficult path. Fortunately, this is the exception so those
that do the right thing and own up to their mistakes stand out among their

Seth Miller

On Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 10:34 AM, Dba DBA <oracledbaquestions@xxxxxxxxx>

> People often leave out something important... personality, willingness to
> share information, being articulate, and learning more than just the DB.
> I have worked with some excellent DBAs who I didn't want to even talk to.
> They cause drama and send out these emails with massive lists of people on
> it whenever they decide for someone reason they don't like anything. Cause
> drama. (its not just DBAs that do this). Really good people don't cause
> unnecessary drama. Not that many people do this... however, there is a real
> popular fantasy writer who put it like this. Patrick Rothfuss gets
> occasional hate mail from fans because he is a slow writer. Its not very
> often. He says its like having a turd in your rice crispies. You can't
> exactly eat around the turd.
> Willingness to share info: Sending people a link to the doc and saying
> RTFM is not real helpful. For people who are not experts reading the docs
> is tough. When I need to look at something new I actually look for blog
> entries first because someone else dissected the blogs. If people didn't do
> that, there would be no point in good DBAs writing these blogs...
> More than Just the DB: if its all the DB, then you don't know that much.
> One thing I have seen from Oak Table members is they know alot about unix
> and operating systems. Quite a few of them have clearly read algorithm
> books. I have read a few myself. I know some C (not alot) from school. I
> find it helpful. I also try to listen to the developers and sometimes I
> read their code. If you just know the DB, then developers will often blow
> you off, but if you can speak their language they are more responsive. I
> see alot of that from Oak Table members.
> Articulate: It takes a lot of practice to explain technical issues to
> people who don't know it as well as you or don't know your discipline. If
> you are very good you can explain things without using oracle jargon and
> simplify. It takes alot of practice to do this... Again, I point to the
> Oracle blogs. Jonathan Lewis and others are very good at this.

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