VMUG Benefits

September 22, 2012 0 By Eric Shanks

I signed up for the VMware Users Group last year at VMworld.  I don’t remember, why I decided to do it but I assume that it had something to do with a free T-shirt.  Since then, I’ve been to several meetings, all at my local Chicago VMUG chapter www.chicagovmug.com .  At first I was pretty skeptical, but it turns out it’s been one of the best things I’ve done for my career.

Obviously, VMUG is a great way to get some insight on how your colleagues use VMware to accomplish their work goals.  It’s also a pretty good way to see some newer technologies and meet with vendors that you might not otherwise have an opportunity to see.  I’ve seen some great training sessions as well, which has helped to expand my expertise in certain subjects.

It turns out however, that the most useful things I learned were when I really got involved in the meetings.  I’ve spoken at a group meeting, and will be presenting two more sessions at the Chicago VMware Users Group Conference this week.  I don’t necessarily enjoy speaking in front of large groups, but at a certain point I felt that I should share what I knew.  (I just hope the other attendees find that information useful.)  Speaking takes up a fair amount of time when you consider any research you do, and fact checking your slide deck, but I’ve learned a lot more from preparing to speak at a session, than listening to one.

I’ve met some great people in the VMUG program that have plenty of experiences to share.  I created this blog after some encouragement from some VMUG members.  I can say for sure, that I’ve learned all kinds of things from posting on this blog.  (gramar and speling excludeded)  I recently switched jobs and could not believe the support and assistance I received from members of my local users groups.

I guess the point of this post was to encourage others to join their local VMUG chapter, and not only be a member, but get involved.  There are some really great benefits to these groups, and most of them are intangible.  Put yourself out there and see what happens.  You might learn something wonderful about yourself.

To get involved, go to http://www.vmug.com/l/pw/rs.

If you’re in the Chicago Area this week, make sure to register for the Chicago VMUG Conference, and come say hi.  If you’ve gotten that far, make sure to check out the Session on SRM with Raj Jethnani and myself.  — No heckling.