Well, I got through my first technical presentation and overall I thought it went pretty well.
I have to admit I wasn't feeling great about it going in as I had practiced at home the night before and made some serious mistakes, but as my wife said, "Bad dress rehearsals usually mean good performance." I did not make any major mistakes and managed to keep the OPASS group interested. I presented on SQL Server Profiler, all my demos worked and I didn't pass out. Andy Warren, the OPASS president, is always trying to drum up and pump up local speakers, so after the presentation he gave everybody the chance to offer some comments and criticisms. Fortunately the worst comment was that I had mentioned that "I just learned this" a couple of times and as the "expert" I probably shouln't have done that, oh, and, of course, I used "um" a few times. The best comment was that the presentation wasn't dry and included a good amount of practical information and experiences along with theory.
I'm always nervous before I speak, but once I get started I relax pretty quickly and try to enjoy myself. Hey, the worst that can happen is that I look foolish. It's not like it's life or death.
Speaking, teaching, and writing are all great ways to learn. Of the the 3 I enjoy speaking the most, just not the preparation part. Writing can be a chore for me, but since I started blogging last spring it has become easier, and now I am also trying to submit an article at least quarterly to SQLServerCentral, my professional web site of choice. At the very least that helps me calrify my own thoughts on things and hopefully helps someone else as well. Something I have learned recently is that what is mundane and simple to me can be new and exciting to a lot of other people. So what keeps you from contributing your knowledge and experience to the community?