The official PASS Blog is where you’ll find the latest blog posts from PASS community members and the PASS Board. Contributors share their thoughts and discuss a wide variety of topics spanning PASS and the data community.

The Importance of Running for the PASS Board of Directors

It's that time of year again; PASS is looking for new leaders to join the Board. You might be asking why you should consider running for a Board seat when you already have a full-time job and a ton of other commitments. I mean, let's face it, attending Board meetings and taking on the responsibilities of a Board member adds to your already busy calendar.

As a sitting Board member, I can tell you that this is time well spent. I have gleaned valuable insights around patience, organizational financial responsibility, and increased knowledge and passion for the community in which we serve.

If I break it down even further and let you into the mind of Chris Yates, there are some additional thoughts I pondered during my initial run almost two years ago now:

  1. Giving back to my profession and community - Being a Board member, I have learned that you get as much out of it as you put in. Looking back at my soon to be 20-year career, I have had many individuals invest time in me; many who are past PASS Board members. Paying it forward to the next generation is something I don't take lightly. As Board members, we help mold and shape the future of PASS, and support the careers of future generations.
  2. Leadership Skills - Board service demands excellent communication skills along with the ability to make hard decisions. Identifying the mission, along with understanding the business side, is not always an easy weight to measure. Keeping things simple, clear, and concise is key.
  3. Being an Ambassador - Being able to represent and be an ambassador for the data community of a global organization is no easy task. But, it is a rewarding one when you see the faces of attendees at events when the problem they were working on is finally solved; or see the tireless number of volunteers who put on local events and user groups to help their respective communities grow.
  4. Speak Your Mind - There are times when you will need to bring up an uncomfortable topic during a meeting. As a Board member, it’s essential that you share your perspectives, insights, and point of view.
  5. Be Active - Yes, this means being an active Board member. Be engaged and be the catalyst for change when needed. I am more active and engaged now than I have ever been in the community.

Now, back to the question about why you should serve on the PASS Board. I'm glad you asked:

  1. To make a difference for the global community. Yes, you can make a difference. Why? Because I've experienced it firsthand.
  2. To be fully accountable for what our organization does and does not provide. Yes, this means we always have room to get better.
  3. To be a voice in our community.
  4. To help not only our community succeed today, but to continue to thrive in the future.
  5. To help shape the progress and next generation of PASS.
  6. To challenge yourself.
  7. For your career growth. Gain leadership skills and experience to help you progress in your career.
  8. For the opportunity to shape the future of PASS while furthering your skills as a leader and influencer.
  9. To be the voice of the community in the strategic advancement of a global organization.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post and for perhaps considering running for the 2020/2021 term on the PASS Board of Directors. As we look to the future, I want to express my extreme gratitude to the community. It has been an honor and privilege to serve you and stand alongside my fellow Board members in representing the Community. I believe in PASS, which is the people, and I believe in the future of this organization.

For more details on how you can put your name forward for this year’s Election, please visit the PASS Election page.

We > Me


Christopher Yates
About the author

Chris Yates is a Vice President | Director of Data and Architecture with over 16 years of experience in the SQL industry. He is a Microsoft Data Platform MVP, as well as Director-at-Large for PASS. His experience includes design and implementation of both OLTP and OLAP solutions, as well as assessment and implementation of SQL Server environments for best practices, performance, and high availability solutions accompanied by a strong development background.

Chris enjoys helping others in the SQL Server community and does this by contributing to several SQL forums, creating “The SQL Professor”, and speaking at several SQL functions. His passion and focus is not only on technology but also helping others along their way and career path.

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