Although 2015 was a fantastic year for Microsoft SQL Server BI and Power BI, it was not a good year for me. Dear Santa, I know the 2015 Underwood Family Task Summary report looks absolutely horrendous. I know that I deserve nothing more than a stocking full of coal but…please let me explain.

Task Report

Note: For a larger view of this report, please click on the image.

Mr. Underwood and I both share a passion aka obsession for data and metrics. He has not openly shared his reports on these specific topics with me. I would bet that they actually do exist somewhere in his meticulously organized filing system. He counts EVERYTHING. For fun, I generated the 2015 Family Task Summary data based on my personal guestimate of how I fared this year in each area. It was inspired by the quantity of appointments for tasks that Mr. Underwood sent to my work calendar this morning.

Tasks for Jen

Note: These are real tasks. The granular level of task detail is a Mr. Underwood thing.

Bottom line = I need to step it up in 2016. Mr. Underwood has been Mr. Wonderful.

I am immensely grateful for the health and safety of my family. I do not take that for granted for one millisecond. No excuses. I know, I know. But Santa, this year was exceptional due to the Power BI monthly, weekly, and daily feature or news releases. Literally thousands of inquiries came in each and every month from internal field sales teams to external forums, social media channels, Skype IMs, text messages, random phone calls to my personal cell phone, etc. It has been an experience that I will never forget. Now that there are Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Customer Success teams in place with many more people easing the ad-hoc Q&A / technical support workload and taking my non-Q&A workload, my task performance at home is already improving. Check out my November stats! It is getting a little better. Is it good enough to get just one book? You know I love books. It is the first one for the latest version of Power BI from an excellent author. Please?

Applied Power BI

2016 Wish List

Since I truly deserve nothing from Santa in 2015, let’s plan my 2016 wish list! Every new day is another opportunity to continue to improve. Every new day the world around us continues to change and evolve faster than it did the day before. It is an amazing time to love data and embrace the digital business transformation ahead. In my recent Surfing Technology Trends presentation, I shared that the changing market shifts that are coming with IoT, automation and other technological advances presents a huge “Blue Ocean” opportunity to innovate, explore new business models and experiment.

In 2016, I wish to stretch into new areas of business and charity. Although I have been focused primarily on data for the past 20 years, I also worked in management consulting. marketing and strategy. That work was intellectually stimulating and often referenced data in both research and decision-making processes. As the classic business models evolve into digital models, my wish is to keep up with these changes and help others embrace transformation.

In 2016, I want to attend more industry conferences to keep up with the awesome innovation that I see all around me. I was lucky to do that in 2014. I miss it.

In 2016, I want to give back to the world that has been great to me. When I send a donation, I simply don’t feel the same joy that I used to feel when I volunteered at the Crisis Center talking with the elderly or freely coached teams of smiling, shouting cheerleaders.

In 2016, I want more time to learn. Right now Storytelling with Data, numerous issues of Communications of the ACM, Analytics Magazine, Harvard Business Review, Negotiation 101 and sooooo many other resources are scattered about my office unopened.

Lastly in 2016, I want to work on balance and quality of life! Talking with my grandmother who almost passed away last month was a reminder that we only have one life to live. I am not money motivated. I am life experience motivated. So in 2016, I want to follow my passions, seize opportunities that provide new life experiences and diligently balance work / home demands.

Happy Holidays!