A while back, I blogged about the importance of recognizing database values. If you’ve got a dozen databases on a server, and one of them is hogging resources, how much is that database worth to the business? If it’s a database housing low-value data (like employee web surfing habits) and the other databases are much more valuable (like incoming sales) then that guides your fix. Move the low-value data to a lower-value server, or move the higher-value data to a higher-value server. Don’t make your high-value apps suffer at the expense of poorly written low-value apps.
Saturday on Twitter, I was talking with another DBA (who shall remain nameless lest this come off in the wrong way) about a project. He needed a free or low-cost way to monitor a free server with low-priority applications. He said the company didn’t see the value in spending money to monitor those apps, so he didn’t have a budget.
I’ve been there myself, and I feel that pain. I remember being a DBA and saying that every database was important. Just because a server is development doesn’t mean it’s unimportant – if it goes down, the developers can’t work. I like the developers, so I need to protect their server, right?
Come back to the most basic part of the problem: the company doesn’t see the value in spending money to solve that particular problem. It’s tempting for us to want to be the hero, to save the company money, to accomplish something they ordinarily would have had to pay money for.
But it’s the weekend.
They don’t call it free time because it’s free to the company.
Don’t get me wrong – I love working on the weekends. People who love what they do, love doing it every day of the week. I can say this with absolute certainty because it’s a bright, sunny day outside in beautiful Seattle, 9am, and I’m sitting in a Microsoft office studying. But on the weekends, take a step back. Step away from your day-to-day priority list and think about doing things that:
- Things that energize you
- Things that will pay off for your career long-term
- And if you’re gonna work, pick things that the company sees the most value in
If they won’t give vendors money to solve a problem, they probably won’t give you a raise or a promotion for solving it either. Go solve things that make your company executives drool with anticipation. Follow the budget, solve the problems they see value in, and they’ll see value in you.