I’m a HUGE proponent of live training.
Webinars and on-line training is fine, but there is nothing like physically being in an environment of like-minded people.
Ken Puls is hosting a Power BI Bootcamp LIVE in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Now, before you click away from this crass commercial message, let me preempt all your questions by answering them here.
1. Who’s Ken Puls?
He’s an Excel MVP, author of the wildly popular book on Power Query (M is for Data Monkey), and the go-to person we Excel MVPs hit up when we have an complex Power BI issue. He’s the real deal.
Oh and he’s a Canadian, redhead (weird right?).
He’s kind of a cross between comedian Pete Holmes and Mythbuster Adam Savage.
2. Why should you care about Power BI?
Your success and (dare I say) potential to move up in your career, hinges on your ability to tackle ever-more demanding data processes.
Over the last few years, the concept of self-service business intelligence (BI) has taken over the corporate world. As Excel Analysts, we are expected to create our own reports, run our own queries, and conduct our own analyses – all without the need to engage the IT department. These new demands stem from several factors.
- Too Much Data to Contain: Organizations are realizing that no single enterprise reporting system or BI tool can accommodate all of their users. Pre-defined reports and high-level dashboards may be sufficient for some casual users, but a large portion of today’s users are savvy enough to be considered power users. Power users have a greater understanding data analysis and prefer to perform their own analysis; often within Excel.
- Changing Analytical Needs: In the past, business intelligence primarily consisted of IT-managed dashboards showing historic data on an agreed upon set of key performance metric. Managers today are demanding more dynamic predictive analysis, the ability to iteratively perform data discovery, and the freedom to take the hard left and right turns on data presentation. These managers often turn to Excel to provide the needed analytics and visualization tools.
- The Need for Speed: Users are increasingly dissatisfied with the inability of IT to quickly deliver new reporting and metrics. Most traditional BI implementations fail specifically because the need for changes and answers to new questions overwhelmingly outpace the IT department’s ability to deliver them. As a result, users often find ways to work around the perceived IT bottle-neck and ultimately build their own shadow BI solutions in Excel.
The Power BI suite of tools ushers in a new age for us Excel analysts. Excel is truly an integral part of the Microsoft BI stack – able to integrate multiple data sources, define relationships between data sources, process analysis services cubes, and develop interactive dashboards that can be shared on the web.
3. What kind of stuff will you learn?
You’ll get a comprehensive review of Power BI features, and the analytical concepts that will help you create better reporting components.
After this 3-day course, you’ll able to:
- Analyze large amounts of data and report those results in a meaningful way
- Get better visibility into data from different perspectives
- Add interactive controls to show various views
- Automate repetitive tasks and processes
- Create eye-catching visualizations
- Create impressive dashboards and What-If analyses
- Access external data sources to expand your message
4. What kind of seedy hotel is this event being held?
You’ll be very comfortable at the Westin Grand Vancouver.
5. Canada…weather….dreary right?
This is a picture of Vancouver in February. Not Hawaii, but definitely not the tundra you’re imagining.
6. How can I convince my manager to pay for this?
Send that cheap bastard this article from the Harvard (yes I said HARVARD) Business Review:
“Before counting on any innovation offering from a vendor to change their fortunes, managers should therefore invest in two kinds of education. First, they need to ensure that the professionals they employ are current in their fields. Every discipline is experiencing accelerated development, and the rapid knowledge obsolescence that goes with it. Cushing Anderson of IDC puts it well: “Knowledge leak is the degradation of skills over time, and it … can kill organizational performance in as little as a couple of years.” While it might have seemed reasonable in an era of slower change to put the onus on the individual to maintain his or her currency, firms today must make it their business to counter this leakage.”
Hee-hee….they said leakage…
Listen…I can go on and on, but I can’t explain the importance of a live event like this better than Ken.
Take a moment to check out his post, and please consider attending.