My P3 Story!
Well, it looks like I’m up next to share my PowerPivot and P3 story!
I really enjoyed Ryan’s story, and I took away from it that you must make time for what you what to achieve in life and with HARD WORK and DETERMINATION anything IS possible!
And Nar’s journey has similarities to my own – a very EARLY interest in technology, a natural CURIOSITY, and applied LIFE EXPERIENCES.
I was also moved by Reid’s story and how he was able to overcome MANY challenges… leading up to his position here at P3. It was very INSPIRING!
After having read these stories and having the opportunity to meet and work together with this AMAZING team of people, it’s easy to see how we have come together to share this life-changing opportunity.
I believe that we ALL need inspiration, we NEED other PEOPLE and that we ARE all CONNECTED in this UNIVERSE!
For me, I would say it was CURIOUSITY, HARD WORK, and BELIEVING in the connection that I had to the P3 Blog Post and the community that lead me to the idea, a thought and a dream of joining P3. If you’ve seen the Disney movie called Moana, it was like the Universe and the Blog Post “called” out to me just like the sea called out to Moana.
Sound crazy. Anyone intrigued? Anyone checking out from continuing to read this blog? I mean if you didn’t check out after the cat meme blog https://powerpivotpro.com/2018/01/consecutive-days-back/> then you might as well keep reading, lol!
RE: Cat memes; Life is TOO short, and you need to have some FUN!
Okay, so back to my P3 story! … And depending on how long this blog post is going to be, I need to decide WHERE to start my story. (Note to self: Share most relevant info!)
Well, I believe that my journey started a long time ago! All events leading up to this point have prepared and led me to this chapter of my life. And EVERYONE that I have met along my life journey has impacted me in some way!
Living in the City
It was nice living in the city because I had all my FAMILY living close by and got to see them often.
One of my earliest memories that shaped who I am was when I made my first FRIEND! A girl from across the street was twirling around in her front yard, and I yelled across “Hello”! Her name was Jessica, and she was my very first friend. We didn’t stay in the city too long, and Jessica moved away too, but the excitement of making a new friend and the bond with my family while living in the city is something that has stuck with me for the rest of my life!
The Pre-Teen Years out in the Country
I spent my pre-teen years out in the country! For Christmas one year, we got a Commodore 64 from Santa! My BROTHER taught me some simple basic programming: I learned about the FOR LOOPS where I could have the computer print my name across the screen in randomly generated colors! I also learned how to break the technology – with infinite FOR LOOPS. And I learned that Cyan is a blueish green color! Oh, the excitement of technology growing up in the 80’s – it’s nothing like it is today!
High School Rocks!
In high school, I only had only two computer classes, which were split into one semester and taught but two different TEACHERS. One computer class was Word Processing – back when you had to use DOS commands like \Dir, \Tree, etc. The other class was a Basic Programming class where we used floppy disks to write our programs. I’m pretty sure that I was the only one in my class that was SUPER excited to write a whole GO TO LINE program that took the user along on a journey starting by entering an answer to the question “What Is Your Name?” into a $ variable. It then took the end user on a trip through space with ASCII characters that were used to make and launch a rocket “up the screen.” My inspiration was those early computer math games that my PARENTS had got for me. You know, the ones when you answer a question correct or wrong you get a random message and picture – the idea and graphics were so cool! (not really, but at the time that’s all we had!)
Interning… in the Real World
Let me just say, my internship was the most STRESSFUL and HARDEST internship EVER! After a super fun week in Alexandria, VA getting settled in, meeting people, learning where everything is, finding a desk location for me… then there was the project assignment!
Assignment: Here’s s a giant stack of paper with code for an application written in dbase – the application crashed, and we need a new one built. What?! Okay, step 1… well, I don’t really know dbase!!!
So, onto gathering requirements from a human, learning a new application called FoxPro 2.6, developing an application, testing, getting end-user reviews & feedback, building reports (for printing out the reports on paper – I know, so weird), documenting and my favorite part, which was creating an image for the icon used to start the application – so fancy and official!
So, what was super hard about this project was that there was NO GOOGLE! Yes, that’s right! And it was a summer internship – so not a whole lot of time for reading technology books. I had to just jump in and go! Good old fashion trial and error with slow and steady forward progress and learnings. And I did get a tiny bit of help from a COWORKER who thought it was quite amusing watching me struggle with technology & application development. But I did it! In fact, once I learned the hard way, how to build the first application, I was able to complete a second application for the company before heading back to college for my final year!
So, as it turns out a Computer Science degree requires lots of Math – my nemesis! But where there’s a will, there’s a way and that way was to get a tutor (PEOPLE) to help me with the Math classes.
In the end, I took so many Math courses that I ended up with a BS in Mathematics and a Minor in Computer Science. Well, that was unexpected, but I did it!
First Job… in the Real World
Onto my first “real” job out of College! The position was hiring a FoxPro programmer. I was not a FoxPro programmer by any means. But since I had worked with FoxPro as part of the MOST stressful summer internship that you could ever imagine, I was able to land an interview which led to the company creating a position for me! I would have to say that this TEAM set the bar of how a manager should lead a team and the foundation of best practices for application development, testing and production environments.
Time to Relocate! Need to be Warm!
Now, when I was growing up, my favorite time of year was vacation time at the beach. I always wondered why we didn’t just LIVE somewhere warmer all year. I had an opportunity to head out west to San Diego and while there (with a paper road map acquired from a gas station) I headed on a road trip to Phoenix, Sedona, Las Vegas and then back to San Diego. It was March, and the weather in Phoenix was sunny and warm! That was it! Time to relocate to Phoenix… and that’s exactly what I did!
Working in Arizona at Direct Alliance, Teletech, Revana, TTEC …
I took a job as a Marketing Database Analyst with a BPO company in Tempe that was called Direct Alliance. And here again, I ran into FoxPro! The Marketing team was using Visual FoxPro for data storage and analysis. The Reporting team was using Access. And the DB team was using IMS Basic. Fast forward a few years, and the organization decided we should all use the same data and we should have a SQL Server Data Warehouse. So long FoxPro… time to use GOOGLE plus trial and error to convert existing FoxPro work to SQL – using the self-teaching method.
I started with this company in my 20’s, worked there all through my 30’s and into my 40’s! It was very insightful to stay with the same but ever-changing organization for 16.5 years! I progressed through 3 decades of my life, many roles in the company (always working with the data), through 3 company name changes and many different client datasets, business rules, logic, and technologies!
In 2013, our Excel was upgraded to Excel 2010, and this is when I found PowerPivot In Excel. I also began GOOGLING… and came across PowerPivotPro. Very early on, I reached out directly to Rob to inquire about formal training – but our company never had any budget for training. So, I self-taught once again but this time with GOOGLE and YOUTUBE… and what I discovered was that the SQL queries that I would create, modify and export to Excel or use in SSRS could be directly connected to Excel in a way that I could create an application that continued to grow versus re-creating SQL queries and SSRS reports repeatedly! From that moment on, ALL my work was output through PowerPivot In Excel!
I subscribed to the P3 Blog, and I would get articles maybe twice a month – this community was amazing, and I was learning so much. I watched as the Blog grew and the frequency of articles increased. I watched as Rob blogged about Matt Allington leaving Coca-Cola in Australia to do PowerPivot work. I shared emails from the Blog with my peers in the organization, but no one quite understood, and most people told me there were better BI tools… even after seeing and using the solutions I was providing to the team.
There was one person though, my BOSS at the time, who said: “Krissy, if you BELIEVE in this tool, then learn it and become the EXPERT.” So, with that bit of advice, I kept learning, growing and that is when the idea, the thought and the dream of joining P3 began.
I attended free webinars and was learning from the online communities, AND I also learned from the Phoenix SQL PASS Group. As I learned more, I tried to help others at my job, and I also tried to help others by answering questions on the P3 Blog post. I just kept learning.
I replied to a questionnaire post on P3 when they were looking for help. However, at the time they were looking for part-time 9-5 availability which conflicted with my current position. Then, one day in Feb. 2017, I got an email saying that P3 was hiring for full-time consultants… all my energy shifted on getting my resume updated and applying for the position.
Power Pivot and P3
Through the power of the UNIVERSE, I was coincidentally able to meet with ROB COLLIE in person, here in Phoenix, before making my final decision to accept the position with P3.
When I met with Rob, one thing we really connected on what the idea of the “Universe” is putting things into motion that were meant to be.
And so, with much joy and excitement, with the support of my MOM, HUSBAND, KIDS, and COWORKERS, I accepted the position of Principal Consultant with POWER PIVOT PRO and have continued my Power Pivot journey with P3 – where I’ve been able to:
· Create a new FAMILY of COWORKERS & BOSSES and work together as a TEAM
· Make many new FRIENDS and be a TEACHER to help them on their own Power BI journey!
It’s been an AWESOME and AMAZING experience being able to share my knowledge of Power Pivot in Excel, Power Query and Power BI with our P3 clients and to be a part of this P3 family.
THANK YOU to ROB COLLIE for starting his journey… which has led me to my journey…and many others to start and continue their journies. I’m excited to see how far we all will go on this journey together!
Forget bending spoons with your mind – there’s no money in it.
It takes a special kind of mindset to “bend” data (and software!) to the human will. As this article demonstrates, we at PowerPivotPro can twist Power BI into a pretzel if that’s what an organization needs. (A robust, trustworthy, industrial-strength pretzel of course).
The data-oriented challenges facing your business require BOTH a nimble toolset like Power BI AND a nimble mindset to go with it. And as Val Kilmer / Doc Holladay once said, we’re your huckleberry.