Congratulations to User Group Leader, Naveen Ajmera and the Dubai PUG on Winning the October PUG Leader Challenge. We sat down with Naveen to find out more about the Dubai User Group. Here are his answers.
What motivated you to start a PUG?
The spark to start a PUG was ignited by my love and passion for Power BI. I have this Power BI link A true love story never ends : Power BI & I to narrate my Power BI journey. Generally we see that when a business requires to get insight from its data, it depends on IT experts. What I realized that most business persons who lack fluency in IT language and IT experts lack a comprehensive understanding of the business, there is always a gap in successful completion of a BI solution. I, myself being a Chartered Accountant by qualification, had faced these problems in past but my extensive learning of self BI tool like Power BI bridged that gap. I built all my business reporting and analytics on Power BI where live data coming from different sources in our IT eco system and shared it real time with all business users. These reports include but not limited to financial reporting, sales and CRM dashboard, operation process and control reporting, HR and social media analytics. While talking to many business users who use excel in their day to day work, I was surprised to know their unawareness of these free tools available in excel. This made me think to find a platform to share my knowledge on Power BI and to meet other experts and learn more from them.
How did your group get started?
Well I knew for a long time that most of the Microsoft products have online user community group and I was part of Power BI User Group community since 2016. So I took this initiative to start Power BI User Group and in April, 2017 Dubai Power BI user group took off. Our first PUG meeting was held at Microsoft office in Dubai on 9th August 2017 with full support from Microsoft Dubai team. My sincere thanks to Sandeep Shah, Kevin Ashby, Tarek Bani and Ksenia Ternavskykh of Microsoft and Mohammed Owais leader at UAE SQL Server and BI User Group for making the first ever Dubai PUG event successful.
How do you encourage your members to network and share best practices?
During summer season in Dubai we see things usually slow down as most of the people take their annual break in these months but now we are back in action again. So initially I am focusing more on increasing the PUG member base. I also encourage them to visit https://www.pbiusergroup.com where more than 37000 members worldwide share their knowledge and best practices.
What do you think makes your group successful?
Dubai is the most dynamic city in many respect and it provides exceptional quality of life and an unmatched business environment. The leaders here have a vision to make Dubai the happiest city on Earth. In few years from now we will see all government services and transactions will be done paperless and cashless and without the need for visiting government offices. I think in such a tech savvy city, awareness of data revolution through self BI tool like Power BI makes my group successful.
Tell us about your plans for the rest of the year
I have plan to do monthly events from next month which will include webinars as well. I am also talking to few corporations to get them on board as sponsor which will help me to organize big events and also to invite experts from overseas to share best practices. I also have plan to do joint event with other user group like SQL and Dynamics user groups. I am also inviting real business users to showcase their Power BI work on PUG platform which will generate greater interest in participants. I will end with my motto statement "Keep excelling with Power BI