Adam Gartenberg's Blog

Business Analytics and Optimization, IBM and Social Marketing

Big C... Little C... What begins with C?

It's great to see people continuing to talk about the Data Champion program that we announced the other week at IOD.

Robert Catterall, one of the inaugural Data Champions has a great post about the program and what its implications are for the community, and he makes an important distinction between what he calls "Big C" Champions and "little c" champions:

IBM, through this new program, has made us "Big C" (i.e., "official") Champions, but what we have in common - and I suppose that this is the point of the award - is that we have worked to further the efforts of the legions of "little c" (as in not officially known-as) champions all over the world who stand up and speak out for DB2 every working day of the year.

Robert talks about what motivates him - and he believes others - to contribute to the community:
Having long been a "little c" DB2 champion myself, I think that I can speak to what motivates so many people to be active DB2 advocates, even when there is no direct corresponding financial reward (as might be earned by an IBM software sales representative). It comes down to having a strongly-held view that DB2 represents the very best in database technology - in terms of advanced functionality, in terms of reliability and availability, in terms of scalability and performance, and in terms of value received for the dollar (or whatever your unit of currency) spent.

He then closes with what could very well be the best summary I've seen of the role the community - and its champions of all types - plays in supporting its members:
And so it is that all kinds of folks - right now - are championing DB2. Many of these individuals - including, as mentioned previously, my fellow "Big C" Champions - have taken things a step further by working to equip "little c" champions with the knowledge that they need to be successful in their DB2 advocacy efforts. We facilitate that knowledge transfer through our leadership of regional and international DB2 user groups, through our presentations and Webcasts, and through our writing in technical journals and blogs. We help people to learn about new DB2 features, we share best practices, and we encourage people to think big with respect to using DB2 technology in new ways. We're Champions working with champions. That's called community. It's something that money doesn't buy, and it's something that DB2 has in spades. I encourage you to be a part of it.

Thank you for such a great post (and for all of your ongoing contributions), Robert.  I think I've ended up quoting just about all of it, but please do visit Robert's blog to read his thoughts in their entirety.