It’s been already three years…Time flies and that’s so true! On this same date two years ago, I did a short retrospective of year 1…Then, I did the same thing last year for year 2. Now, it’s time to reflect on everything that happened in the previous 365 days.
Looks like there is a threshold for the number of blog posts:) – same as in year 2, I’ve published 38 posts (including this one)! There’s been a lot of hectic periods with a lot of regular work to do, so I was hardly finding spare time to write. But, hey, it’s still approximately 1 blog post every 10 days, which is not that bad at all! It’s not that I don’t have ideas or motivation to write (I have a serious backlog of ideas for blog posts) – I simply struggle to find time to write:(…
The thing is that I often spend a lot of time writing one article, as sometimes it takes literally a few days (not 5 minutes per day for 10 days, but literally a few days of effective work in preparing the post).
I’ll repeat: I firmly believe that content is king! Therefore, I was trying my best to produce quality content, that will be both interesting and helpful to other people. And, trust me, there is no better feeling when someone gives you feedback that your text/idea helped to solve her/his problem.
Or, even better – when someone tells you that your blog posts helped them pass the exam! When I started the “Mastering DP-500” exam series of articles, not in my wildest dreams I expected to (positively) impact so many people around. But, the fact is that a lot of individuals found these articles helpful in preparing for the exam. And, I’m the happiest person when I hear that! Therefore, since there are still some topics remaining uncovered, I’ll do my best to complete the whole series in the opening months of 2023.
In the 1st year, data-mozart.com was visited by ~22.000 users, and had 36.000 unique sessions, while in year 2, there were ~73.000 users and ~105.000 sessions. I don’t know what to say about this year’s numbers:
Around 103.000 users and 151.000 sessions! Translated into page views, it’s ca. 205.000 page views:
That’s honestly an incredible achievement! That’s WOW! Translated to pure numbers, this is a ~50% increase compared to the previous year! These numbers make me really proud and give me an enormous motivation boost to continue publishing. The ultimate “winner” among the pages was the one explaining why it may be a good idea to use views instead of tables in your Power BI solutions. There were also some other highly visited pages, such as the one where I explained how the Auto page refresh feature works in Power BI, or how to identify data loading bottlenecks in Power BI!
This was a very productive year from the speaking perspective. I’ve presented 29 times during 2022, which means approximately 2.5 presentations per month! Again, most of the sessions were delivered virtually – but there were some delivered in person as well! And, that’s the best thing about speaking that happened this year. The pandemic is slowly behind us (hopefully), and I’m really looking forward to being part of more and more in-person events.
As speaking highlights, I’d mention Data Grillen, a fantastic event organized by Ben Weissman and William Durkin, where I had a chance to meet many like-minded people from the whole planet – having fun with beer and sausages, while learning about all data-related topics.
Then, in September, I was in a “fairytale” called Legoland. There was a superb conference “Power BI Next Step”, organized by Just Blindbaek and Asgeir Gunnarson. It’s enough to tell that the conference took place in Legoland Billund – a hotel room is something that can’t be described in words – you have to experience it! Socializing events were amazing as well and it was great spending time with friends from the data world…
Finally, the end of the year brought me to beautiful Ljubljana, to deliver a workshop on my favorite topic: “Power BI performance tuning”. Everything was fabulous, great hosts Dejan, Matija, Tomaz, and Mladen, fantastic audience, but I got a HEAVY flu and ended up in the hospital after returning from Slovenia. Therefore, I “promised” these great guys that we’re going to “compensate” socializing next year:)
Other than that, I was presenting at all kinds of events – from huge conferences, such as SQLBits, PASS Data Community Summit, Power BI Summit, Data Platform Summit, and multiple Data Saturdays across the globe, to local user groups all around the planet (Europe, Asia, Africa, America)…
And, I owe huge gratitude to all of the organizers, for giving me an opportunity to present, and all attendees for deciding to spend their most precious asset – TIME – with me!
And, I’m already looking forward to speaking engagements in 2023, as I’ve already marked some of the events that I’d love to be part of – either as a speaker, or an attendee.
I started the Data Mozart Youtube channel in the summer of 2021, as many people asked for a video to complement the blog post. After 11 videos in 2021, I published only 7 videos in 2022. Unfortunately, I was struggling to find time in recent months to publish new videos on a regular basis, and I sincerely hope that I will have more space in 2023 to dedicate to producing new Power BI and data-related videos.
In the last quarter of 2020, I’ve become a Pluralsight author. After creating 3 Pluralsight courses in 2021, I’ve added 5 more this year (3 of them related to the DP-500 exam), which gives 8 courses in total! What a year!
Huge thanks to Kari Harbath for believing in me, but also to all the other lovely, kind, and supportive people from Pluralsight. It’s really a privilege to be part of the Pluralsight family.
Running a Power BI Bootcamp
Somewhere in May, I decided to run a free Power BI Bootcamp. The idea was to provide women and individuals who can’t afford paid training, with an opportunity to upskill themselves and help them achieve their professional goals. More about the idea and motivation can be found here.
I was thinking about running a group of ~15 people, but I’ve received an overwhelming 82 applications! So, how do you decide who to reject, when all the stories behind these applications absolutely deserve a seat in the Bootcamp? You simply reach out to your fellow community friends and they will happily jump in to help! Therefore, HUGE THANKS to Andrea Janicijevic, Pragati Jain, Mohammed Adnan, and Augustin Bukvic, for taking over the lead of the groups, so we could have helped no less than 75 individuals!
This was an amazing experience and definitely one of the highlights of this year!
Writing a book
In 2022, I started one of the most challenging projects in my life – writing a book! And, not “any” book, but the one on my favorite topic: Power BI Performance Tuning. I’ll be forever grateful to Jonathan Gennick from Apress, who was stubborn and patient enough to convince me to join this project (although Jonathan moved from Apress in the meantime) and for giving me an opportunity to become a published author.
I’m currently struggling with finding enough time for writing, but I’m sure I’ll be back on track very soon. Publishing the book will be definitely my main professional goal in 2023…
Becoming a mentor
More than 2 years ago, I started my speaking journey at New Stars of Data. I’ve already described in detail my experience and how crucial was for me to have an experienced speaker as a mentor (Wolfgang Strasser). I’ve also recently written a blog post explaining why YOU should start as a speaker and how this can boost your professional and personal growth.
This year, I was lucky enough to become a mentor of the wonderful and talented Blanca de Erausquin, my former Avanade colleague, who also kicked off her speaking career at the New Stars of Data event. Blanca did an amazing job and I’m sure she will be one of the true speaking stars in the coming years.
I’m also very much looking forward to helping other individuals in 2023 to achieve their personal and professional goals by becoming speakers – we simply need new and fresh faces, and I’m super happy if sharing my experience may help them on their journey…
In 2022, I decided to create my own Microsoft Data Platform training curriculum and offer that to individuals trying to learn Power BI and Azure Synapse Analytics. I’ve got some really good feedback (thank you, Gina😊) and I’ll try to improve the materials and include some additional training offerings for the next year.
I’ve also delivered a dozen of workshops at various conferences, such as SQLBits, Data Platform Summit, and Data Saturday Slovenia. My favorite one, “Cracking Power BI Performance Tuning” got some really nice feedback from the majority of attendees. Since many people approached me regarding this workshop, I’m thinking of creating a fully-fledged on-demand course on this topic in the first quarter of 2023.
Synapse Influencers and Data Jazzers
Throughout 2022, I’ve focused on sharing more content related to Azure Synapse Analytics. I really like the way this platform evolves and I’m sure many customers will implement Synapse Analytics as a one-stop-shop for all their data workloads.
Therefore, I was recognized for my contribution to the Synapse Analytics area, as a Synapse Champion, and in the last quarter of the year, after a few of my articles were published on the official Microsoft Azure Synapse MVP corner, I received this super cool #synapseinfluencer swag! Big thanks to Pawel Potasinski from Microsoft for all the support:)
I’ve also started a Data Jazzers live show with my friend and Power BI expert, Augustin Dokoza Bukvic. Once per month, we host someone from the data community and have a 60-minute informal chat on everything related to Power BI (but not exclusively to Power BI, as we also try to uncover some individual perspectives of our guests). We had the honor and pleasure to host true rockstars in 2022, both from the Microsoft Power BI team (Chris Webb, Phil Seamark, Jay ter Heerdt, Will Thompson, Alex Powers), and Power BI community legends (Alberto Ferrari, Pragati Jain, Ruth Pozuelo, Kurt Buhler).
We received some really nice feedback for these episodes and we have huge plans to develop the Data Jazzers concept in 2023 even more! Stay tuned, some cool announcements will come soon:)
Well, 2022 was (again) a year to remember – mostly in a positive way!
I would lie if I say it wasn’t exhausting sometimes, especially in the last months of the year – but, I truly enjoy working with data, and even more enjoy sharing my knowledge and experience. There is no better reward than when someone says to you that your article or idea helped to solve a problem or pass the exam!
I hugely appreciate how much I’ve learned, and how much I’m still learning on a daily basis from different data community experts – that being said, I promise to continue making music from the data in 2023!
If you come so far reading this article, then I’d really like to give you special kudos! Thanks for reading, happy holidays, enjoy the festive period in peace and health, and hope to see a lot of you in person in 2023!
Last Updated on December 23, 2022 by Nikola