The Power BI Evolution: An MVP’s Unfiltered Journey

Data-Driven Podcast

In this episode, AtScale CTO and co-founder Dave Mariani chats with Greg Deckler, Vice President at a global IT services firm and a seven-time Microsoft MVP. They discuss Microsoft’s strategy with Power BI and its integration with Microsoft Fabric, with Deckler critiquing the rushed release and its early limitations. Both express skepticism about business users adopting more complex tools, citing ongoing challenges like measuring totals.

They also discuss the impact of generative AI on business intelligence tools like Power BI, urging caution about data security and governance. They also highlight the underutilization of natural language queries in Power BI despite frequent demos. Deckler speculates the future of Power BI’s support for various data platforms and Microsoft’s strategy to integrate these with Fabric.

To learn more, read Deckler’s 3 part blog series, “Is Fabric and Direct Lake a Game Changer For Microsoft?

See All Podcasts Button Arrow
Quote icon

Once I was no longer an MVP, a whole realm of content and topics opened up for me. I could actually speak my mind and say things the way I see them.

You see a lot of limitations. You see what the users themselves are struggling with in Power BI. Of course, number one is measure tools, right? It comes up every day on the forums.


Greg Deckler: Synapse is dead. And it’s not dead in terms of, it’s still going to, it’s still gonna continue on. But I ended up on a Synapse blog page, and it was a very active blog. Like, you know, three or four articles sometimes a day, and then all of a sudden it just radio silence for like two or three months after fabric launched. That’s like, oh yeah. I don’t think Synapse is, there’s much going on in the synapse world these days.

Dave Mariani: Well, hi everyone, and welcome to another edition of the Data-Driven podcast. so today, very special guest. it’s Greg Deckler, and Greg is the vice president at a global technology, consulting firm. He’s also a seven-time, Microsoft, MVP. He’s an author of his recent, recent writings around mastering Microsoft Power BI. So Greg, thank you for joining, and welcome to the podcast.

Greg Deckler: Yeah, it’s great to be here. Thanks for having me on.

Dave Mariani: Well, great. So we got a lot of stuff to get into today ’cause, I would encourage listeners out there to go to, Greg’s, LinkedIn page. It’s, it’s a lot of great stuff there and actually really funny too. So, you gotta go check that out. But Greg, talk to me about, you know, how you got into doing what you’re doing. tell me, tell the listeners a little bit about yourself and how you got, how you got to the path, of what you’re doing today.

Greg Deckler: Yeah, sure. So, I mean, so it’s kind of interesting in terms of, I’m pretty well known in the Power BI community, but I don’t actually do that for my job. I actually use, I got into using Power BI for, because I run a technology consulting practice around Dynamics 3 6 5 actually. And so I got into, using Power BI to, track my practice and report on my practice and make sure that, you know, everybody’s utilized and have stuff to do. so I mean, I got into it, you know, the same way probably a lot of people do is I, I get an Excel spreadsheet every, you know, every week or every month, and I’d have to do a bunch of formatting on it and then, you know, build a report off of it. And I’d have to do that every single time. and so when I started using the power tools in Excel, you know, it allowed me to automate, you know, all of that data cleanup and transformation. And that’s, it’s really how I ended up getting into Power BI and I’ve been following it ever since

Dave Mariani: On, even on your LinkedIn page, you’re sort of goating Microsoft to address their shortcomings and Power BI like, like what’s it day 4,704 about, that matrix totals are broken. , it looks like you posted that daily. so it sounds like, you know, you use, you use Power BI in the power tools a lot in what you do, like you mentioned. So what is it, are you friend foe what, it sounds like you have a complicated relationship with, with Microsoft

Greg Deckler: you might say that. I guess , I guess. yeah, I mean it’s, it was, it’s an interest, an interesting relationship with them in terms of all of that, right I was, I was an MVP for seven years, and, and I’m no longer an MVP for an unspecified code of conduct violation, that they, I never, they never told me what exactly I did. but yeah, I mean, it’s, it was an interesting experience being an MVP, being, because I, you feel, feel this overwhelming need not to criticize the product. Mm-Hmm, , you know, or at least you know, if you’re gonna criticize and you’re like, well, it’s not so bad because, you know, you kind of caveat, you know, your criticisms and that sort of thing. You can see that in some ways. In fact, some of the people other MVPs have pointed out, well, Greg, you said that totals were technically correct.

Greg Deckler: I’m like, yeah, I did that when I was an MVP. You know, I wrote that article and I felt the need to caveat the fact that they’re wrong, but I always felt that they were wrong and stupid, the way they worked in that they should work more like an Excel pivot table where you have options to be able to say, Hey, I want the average, or I want the, you know, just sum, just sum up the arose, or you have a lot more options in Excel. And I don’t know why Power BI doesn’t have those. but once, once I, once I was no longer an MVP, there’s a whole realm of content and topics that opened up for me. and I could actually just speak my mind, and say things like I, the way I, the way I see them, and I’m not saying I’m always right or anything like that, but I have an opinion and I tend to express my opinion.

Dave Mariani: Yeah, I mean, look, it’s like, it’s refreshing, right Because you do express your opinion. I mean, look, you, there’s gotta be love there for the product because you do use it and you use it and you, you have extreme detail about what it’s good at and where shortcomings are. So, and a lot of people follow you. So obviously, you know, what you talk about is, you know, is pretty relevant and important, so much so that you’ve, you know, written a book about it. You wanna talk a little bit about the book that you wrote with your partner

Greg Deckler: Well, so I’ve, I’ve actually written six, books. the latest one I actually wrote with Rick DeGroot and Melissa Dete Mm-Hmm, is the Definitive Guide to Power Query m before that was the one you mentioned Mastering Power BI with a Brett Powell. and then, you know, I’ve written a couple, you know, learn Power Bi, first and second edition, Dax Cookbook, power BI Cookbook, second Edition with Brett Powell again, I think that’s all six of ’em. And I’m working on Power BI Cookbook third edition as we speak, actually. So we’re actually in the, you know, second, you know, into the draft phase. All the drafts are done, and then I just have to, you know, get the technical letters to review them, make all the corrections, and then that one will be out hopefully later this later this year. but yeah, I do have a real passion for the, for the software.

Greg Deckler: I mean, I got into it early and, and it really helped me in my job. And I don’t know, I sort of just got into the community. I, you know, started a user group and I really was very active in the community forums, which is, I think is maybe I, you know, there’s some other people that are as active as I am, maybe not for as long as I’ve done, but is one place where you see a lot of the limitations and you see what the users themselves are struggling with in Power Bi mm-hmm, . And of course, number one is to measure totals, right It comes up every day on the forums. And really the whole thing about why I started the meme campaign, which I think I had a breakdown one day after answering the, the measure totals problem like four times , you know, with like, you know, there was like on one page and I had, you know, there were four of ’em, and I, I have a macro for it, and I’m just like, this is ridiculous. This comes up every day, why don’t they just fix this thing And so I posted a meme about it, and just kind of took off from there.

Dave Mariani: Well, you know, so I mean, one of the things that’s interesting is that they, you know, for a big company like Microsoft to be releasing, updates to Power BI as often as they do is pretty impressive. Right so have you seen, I mean, I know that, at least they started out monthly. Are they sort of keep keeping to that, that pretty aggressive schedule of, of updates to Power bi

Greg Deckler: Yeah, they have. I mean, that’s the other thing that really attracted me to that, to the software, was that it is a completely complete reversal from the way Microsoft developed software in the past, right Mm-Hmm. , I, you know, I’ve been using Microsoft software for all of the 30 years I’ve been doing this professionally in terms of consulting. And, you know, you, you got used to the standard, you know, a three year refresh si refresh cycle, right and I was, you know, for example, I was big into a Microsoft Exchange at one point, back in the mid-nineties and late nineties, and did that for almost a decade in terms of exchange, consulting and migrations. And, you know, you had that three-year upgrade cycle where you basically had to go back and relearn all the product again. And it was really kind of refreshing, to see Power BI take a much more agile approach to things.

Greg Deckler: and they have kept up with it over the years. I mean, they, they released one every month except for January’s. They always skipped January. but I think the pace has slowed down recently with, I think with Fabric. You know, I did a couple of videos on my YouTube channel, Microsoft Hates Greg, on this subject, where it was like, Hey, you know, there’s, there’s a, there, there’s a big slowdown in terms of things getting into ga. and, and you really track, you can track it almost right back to when Fabric started, which was actually as a, the, the private preview for that was called Trident, at the time. Mm-Hmm. .

Dave Mariani: So, Greg, I mean, you, you’ve sort of got us into this, the, the, the subject of, of Fabric, and you’ve written a a three blog series. is Fabric and Direct Lake a game changer for Microsoft so, you know, what is the sort of key takeaways there I mean, why is it, do you think that Microsoft launched into doing something pretty radically different when it comes, comes to Fabric and sort of using Power BI as sort of like, the lead horse in that strategy I don’t know. What do you think

Greg Deckler: Well, my opinion is that I think Synapse, and this is a lot of this is anecdotal in terms of what I see in the market in terms of, because my company I work for has a data strategy, practice. And I, you know, I followed that pretty closely. and, you know, it seemed like Synapse was losing in the market overall, and anecdotally, they maybe won, they maybe would win 20% of the deals that would come their way, you know, they’d lose out the Databricks or Snowflake. so I think they kind of felt they needed to do something different. you know, and it’s kind of classic Microsoft strategy. Well, let’s take something that people love and, you know, power BI and leverage that to try to, you know, to try to prop up this other technology that’s not doing so well in the market. That, that’s my opinion. It’s purely my opinion. and, but that’s, if I had to, if I had to say that’s what Microsoft is doing, I mean, that’s, to me, that, that seems very obvious to me that that is, that is what is going on.

Dave Mariani: Yeah. It seems like this, like the, there’s no talk about Synapse anymore, is there I mean, at least in my, my experience, I, I’ve seen the same thing. We, you know, we support a variety of platforms, including Synapse. but, you know, I think maybe, I mean, I could count ’em on one hand, customers that went the synapse route, compared to, you know, what I call the big three, snowflake, Databricks, and then BigQuery, big query. so, so is, is Synapse like in the rear view mirror as, as far in, in your opinion, for Microsoft, and is it leading with fabric and one and one lake

Greg Deckler: I, I did another video, where I said, synapse is dead. and it’s not dead in terms of it’s still gonna, it’s still gonna continue on. it’ll still be around until at some point in the future they’ll sunset it, I’m sure. but, you know, it was kind of a stark, it was a few months after Fabric launched. I went to the Synap, I ended up on a Synapse blog page, and it was a very active blog, like, you know, three or four articles sometimes a day. but definitely, you know, every, almost every day they were posting blog articles and updates and everything, and then all of a sudden it just radio silence, you know, for like two or three months after Fabric launched. It’s like, oh, yeah, I don’t think Synapse is, there’s much going on in the synapse world these days as far as anything new.

Dave Mariani: Yeah. Yeah. It’s like, yeah, I, I think you’re, I think you’re right. That’s a pretty good signal that they have moved on. so they always say, you know, Microsoft takes a couple tries to get it right. So, do you think they’re on the right path with Fabric

Greg Deckler: I mean, it’s a path. you know, it can’t be worse than parallel Data Warehouses is where all this started, right You know, back the way Mm-Hmm. back in the day, and then Azure, SQL Data Warehouse, and, you know, I can went, you know, if, you know, you talk about a few attempts to get it right, I’ve been think they’ve been through four or five now. and now we’re on, now we’re onto Fabric. I mean, it really doesn’t matter because that’s Fabric is the future as far as I can see. really it’s, Power BI even as a standalone platform. I think, you know, basically you can still buy Pro and, you know, use Power BI standalone that way, but really for enterprise customers that we’re using Premium, there is no, that is no longer a standalone product anymore. That’s, you know, no, you’re not even gonna be able to buy it come June 25th or something like that. And then Mm-hmm, Enterprise customers, you know, once their enterprise agreement runs out, you know, they’ll have to be convert their premiums to fabric and all of that sort of thing. So regardless if it’s, whether the right course or not, it’s the, it’s the course we’re on.

Dave Mariani: So, you know, Greg and that, and, and sort of that with that strategy, what do you think, you know, how do you think Microsoft and Power BI as a sort of standalone visualization platform going forward, given that they’re sort of obviously going to favor their own data platform, right What’s that mean for the snowflakes and the Databricks and the big queries, the other data platforms when it comes to Power BI support going forward I’m, I’m getting on, it’s, it’s your opinion, and I’m, as I, and I’m asking you hypotheticals here, but what do you think that means going forward for those platforms

Greg Deckler: Yeah, I mean, I don’t, that’s a good question. I don’t see Power BI going away from its roots where it’s got a connector for everything. you can connect, literally, you can connect, and they always come out with, you know, new connectors every, every month. It seems like there are five or six or 12 new connectors for Power bi. I mean, I really don’t see that changing so much. yeah, it’s gonna be, it’s, but it’s gonna be interesting in terms of with this, this, that they tried to tightly bundle Power BI and Fabric together when there’s really no reason to do it. you know, power Bi Premium could stand on its own, just like, you know, it has for years. but they really want to tightly bundle it the fabric, I think, to basically make fabric succeed. yeah. And I think the overall strategy, I think I kind of pointed out in my blog series was, you know, first they’re gonna, they’re gonna link, they’re gonna create Link servers that you can link to your, you know, from Fabric.

Greg Deckler: You can create a Link server to your Snowflake or your go Google, BigQuery or Databricks. And then, okay, now we can use, you know, analytic capabilities and fabric to, which is really just Power bi, mm-hmm. But I suppose if you want to do like, data engineering or, you know, machine learning and that sort of stuff, that you can do that, through Link servers and that sort of thing. But again, it’s just, it’s a mystery to me in terms of how it’s all going to succeed or how power Microsoft thinks it’s going to succeed. you know, because, you know, other than the fact that, okay, now that you’ve linked there and you can show that you can do stuff in Fabric on the Link service, well, you’re really just paying for the same thing twice. ’cause you’re paying for Snowflake and you’re paying for fabric, and you’re paying for Databricks and you’re paying for fabric.

Greg Deckler: So I think that’s the long-term play, because I just don’t see a lot of other, where other areas where Microsoft could really gain traction. I mean, 80 to 9% of Power BI users are really just business users. I don’t see them going out and building data warehouses and, and doing, you know, writing Python code. I mean, most of them have trouble writing DAX code, yeah. Or Power Query Code. I don’t see them, you know, jumping on the Python bandwagon and going down the data and, you know, machine learning route and not, and writing Jupyter Notebooks and things like that. I, I think that’s beyond most, most business users. mm-Hmm. , maybe I’m wrong on that, but I, you know, so really the, the market for Fabric really is the Synapse users that were using Synapse, but there’s no clear migration path to Synapse to Fabric. You basically almost have to start over.

Greg Deckler: So I, you know, I don’t know. It’s a, it’s a mystery to me sometimes, what Microsoft does,

Dave Mariani: You know, it’s like a, I kinda look at it and think of it is their strategy using sort of Power BI as the wedge to get the data platform workloads, steal them from, you know, from Databricks and Snowflake and BigQuery. because if you make that, if, if you make that integration with Power BI and Fabric so good, it might convince users to say, Hey, let’s, let’s just use Fabric as a, as a lakehouse architecture, since, you know, since my main consumers are consuming the data through Power BI. What do you think about that

Greg Deckler: Yeah, I mean, I think, I mean that, and that’s really the kind of the, the direct, the direct lake route, right Mm-Hmm. in terms of you build something in Fabric and immediately you’ve got a semantic model, you know, that’s in direct lake mode. That is, you know, you, you can then go and build reports off of and everything else, versus, okay, you go build that in Snowflake and then you have to connect to it from Fabric slash Power BI and then build your reports. I don’t think it’s a huge lift either way. it’s, maybe it’s, and the interesting thing is, a lot of the people that I, that I talk to with the, in the community, they’re like, yeah, the worst thing is that, that I just, would you just not build the default model ’cause I’m never gonna use that, you know Yeah. Gonna build my own

Dave Mariani: I hated that too. I, that was my first reaction is what the hell is this thing, number one and it’s not a default model. ’cause this is basically everything, with absolutely no model at all. I mean, it’s like, yeah. It’s like, can I delete this No. you know, it’s like, yeah, I’m, I’m with you on that. That’s, that’s, that’s, that’s kinda lame, but I get where they’re going with it. they’re trying to make it seem like it’s seamless. So, I also noticed, Greg, that they changed the terminology from a dataset to a semantic model.

Greg Deckler: Yep. And I still, I still, if I said dataset at any point during this, this talk, you know, I still fall into bad Habits.

Dave Mariani: well, so, so, just to sort of put a bow around that, so, what would be your sort of, what would be your sort of, advice to potential customers, prospects when it comes to Microsoft Fabric as part of their old, the overall data strategy what would you, what would you, what would you say to them

Greg Deckler: I would, I mean, honestly, I mean, what I’ve been saying for the last, you know, year has been, you know, wait for it to go ga. It’s like a brand, the Microsoft product, wait for it to go GA and then wait a year or two, you know, before you, before you even bother. and I think that’s been proven out just from just the whole host of limitations that Fabric has. And just even in just me trying to do some simple things, with Fabric, it’s just one roadblock after another. it has been very frustrating. Again, I’ve got a lot of videos out on my YouTube channel about all that, where I, you know, I’m just trying to build, like, you know, I just, I just wanna build a, you know, a billion row data set or something like that, and it just Mm-Hmm, proves almost impossible. actually the funny part was like, I ended up resorting to Pearl in order to generate my dataset in my data file and get it, get it loaded up into fabric, which is, that’s a whole

Dave Mariani: Wow. Yeah. Yeah. You know, you think they’re gonna get it right, Greg, eventually.

Greg Deckler: I mean, they’ll get it right. Eventually. The question is, will it be too late, by the time they get it right. I think everything about Fabric really seemed rushed to me. I mean, you had, they had the GA Yeah, the, the private preview announcement was in May of 2023, and then they went GA in October. and it was, I, in my, and, and I’m not the only one that’s saying this, it was not ready for ga. but I think, you know, Microsoft really figured that it was now or never. you know, they decided it was now or never, they had to do something, or they were just gonna completely being, and also ran, you know, in the data analytics space. So they, I think they’ve tried to freeze the market, through a big announcement, you know, at, May, 2023 at Microsoft.

Greg Deckler: I can’t even remember the conference. They keep changing on me, but, the name. but the big one, they hold, hold every May. and yeah, I think it, they just felt it was now or never, and they had to really get this out there and kind of freeze the market, get it released, get people starting to play with it. you know, it’s kind of funny, they released a 60 day demo, right I think I’m on, I’m a year and some change later. I think I’m still on date, 27 or 24 of my 60

Dave Mariani: Yeah. They never, they never started that countdown for me either, Greg. It was like, wow, thanks Microsoft. I love, love using that. But then when I tried to, when I tried to, when I tried to upgrade to the bigger capacity, Greg, it’s like, it was still pointing to the trial capacity. I mean, I, it was insane. I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes, but there’s some, there’s some crazy architecture stuff behind the scenes there, that I ran into. And you know what, they, you know what they told me They said like, you know what, I tried ’cause I wanted to run my models in a larger capacity. And they’re like, you, you have to, you have to rebuild your models in the larger capacity. It’s like, what What do you mean It’s, you know, how long it took me to build the models on the trial capacity, and now I gotta rebuild them on a larger capacity Who’s, you know, what, what are you talking about They closed my ticket. . That was the, that was the, that was the solution.

Greg Deckler: I mean, it’s kind of interesting because, I mean, even in Power Bi premium, if you had multiple capacities, you could move models between, you know, oh, I want this workspace in this capacity. I want this workspace in that capacity. So, I mean, it’s just, again, just the limitations of, of fabric, will drive you crazy right now, which is, I mean, I’d say give it a while before, you know, get, let them hammer out all these kind of kinks and weirdness and limitations. and then, you know, then maybe it’ll, it’ll actually be something that’ll be, that it’ll blow your socks off. I don’t know.

Dave Mariani: Fair enough. Fair enough. All right. So let’s, let’s change topics to, what everybody else is talking about now, which is GenAI. So I want to get your, I want to get your take on, you know, what do you think, how do you think what’s happening in Gen AI and LLMs How do you think that affects business intelligence going forward, Greg

Greg Deckler: well, I mean, so Brian Julius has done some really good work around some of that in terms of, he’s been using copilot or ops, not Copi Chat, GBT four, and building his own LLMs, you know, in terms of their training on his Power BI models themselves. And if you do that, then the Dax, you know, starts to get really, it starts to get really smart about writing the Dax for you. Mm-Hmm. . so I think, you know, you know, it, you know, we’re, and we’ve seen Microsoft go down the path, at least in like the dynamic CRM space or sales. they’ve, they’ve added the ability, like if you’re looking at a list, in there you can say, Hey, build me a Power BI report off of this. and it’ll try to basically, you know, guess what you want to know about this, you know, whatever is the, the view that you’re looking at within dynamics and that sort of thing.

Greg Deckler: And that, that could be really powerful stuff, if they’d ever bring that over to the finance and supply chain side. which is where I spend a lot of my time actually. so I don’t know. It’s, it’s, it’s one of those things where it feels like, it feels like AI and generative AI is really the next big thing, but like, nobody really understood what, you know, when the internet came out, you know, I was coming outta college and I’ve been using the internet for years and I’m trying to tell people about it, and they’re like, yeah, I don’t really get it. You know, I may, I think it’s just a fad. , you know, it was the same kind of commentary that some of, some of it that I see now, but nobody really understood how, just how big and how important the internet was really gonna be in the grand scheme of things back in 1994, let’s say. I think the same about generative AI. I think it’s gonna be huge, but in terms of just the exact impact of it, I don’t even think people can really wrap their head around just how, how big of an impact it’s gonna have.

Dave Mariani: Yeah. I have the same feeling, Greg. It feels like, ’cause I was also, I was also, you know, active in the same time when the internet was born. And, you know, I think that you know, well, chatbots are sort of like, you know, a killer app. It’s like, that’s, that’s probably not, that’s probably not gonna be the app that’s really gonna make GenAI, transformational for us going forward. I’m just waiting for us to see how porn pornography uses Gen ai, because that seems to always be the catalyst for, for new technology, acceptance in the market,

Greg Deckler:  You know, unfortunately, that is, that is very true. I have a feeling, , you know, it probably was a large driver of the, of why the unit became successful to a large, I suppose.

Dave Mariani: So given, given that, like how do you think, you know, how do you think businesses, enterprises, what should they be doing right now with, with Gen ai Should they be, you know, what, what, what, what advice would you give them in terms of how much time they spend, or whether they just wait for this stuff to play out

Greg Deckler: I mean, I think if you wait too long, you’re gonna miss out on some of the competitive advantage. but you, yeah, I mean, what I’ve seen people do that, that’s a mistake. And some companies, they say, oh, let’s just turn copilot on and, and, and turn, you know, send, you know, have it go and, you know, point it at our data that’s sitting out in OneDrive and, you know, teams and all of that sort of thing. that’s a big mistake. Don’t do that, because you’re going to run into all kinds of security and privacy type of risks that you have no idea about, before. So I think, you know, companies need to be cautious with it, and they need to take a very strategic approach to it in terms of, Hey, let’s first make sure that our data landscape, you know, we know what it is and, and work out like the security and the things like that around all of this. Otherwise, they’re gonna get themselves in a lot of trouble, I think.

Dave Mariani: Yeah, you really can’t, you really can’t skip the basics, can your data needs to be in well enough shape with good governance, behind it, before you can unleash it on the world or on your internal world at least. So I’ve been talking a lot about Greg, about, the importance of the semantic layer for bringing business context and that governance layer into something like an, like an LLM. So, you know, you’ve seen a lot, Greg, when it comes to natural language query, is it just a really nice demo, or have you seen actually people actually use natural language query to good effect

Greg Deckler: Are you talking about the Q and A feature in Power BI, or,

Dave Mariani: Yeah. Oh, yeah. Or, or it’s just like, you know, being able to, you know, write English rather than having to point and click and drag and drop. you know, what, what do you think

Greg Deckler: Well, I mean, I hope that the, that the, that the co-pilot and all of that makes q and a actually usable within Power Bi mm-Hmm. , it’s the number one most demoed feature that I’ve ever seen. you know, Microsoft loves the demo q and a, but nobody, none of my customers use it. I mean, it, and it’s a, it’s a nightmare to, to, to build a good q and a model, Mm-Hmm, and keep it up to date with all the synonyms and everything else that needs to become much easier. and if they can use, if Microsoft can leverage Copilot to do that, and I’m sure they’ll just rebrand q and a to Copilot for Power BI and call it a day. I think they’ve already maybe started doing that. they also, I think all of a sudden Power virtual agents is no more, and now it’s like, you know, copilot, you know, then now it’s, you know, oh, now these power virtual agents are really, it’s really ai. Mm-Hmm, .

Dave Mariani: We know how that all works, don’t we Yeah.

Greg Deckler: All of a sudden they just, everybody’s tagging. And it’s funny because all the software vendors that we deal with it, every one of ’em has an ai, you know, spin on their product now, regardless of whether it was already an existing feature or not, it’s been rebranded AI.

Dave Mariani: Yeah. You know what I just, God, that makes me so angry. It really does. Because you just know, it’s just like, oh, come on, just jumping on the bandwagon. It’s like, I, I mean, customers know that customers and prospects know the real deal, that you can’t just change the messaging on your website, and all of a sudden it’s like they should be interested in buying a product when they weren’t interested before. So that drives me crazy. It certainly does.

Greg Deckler: Yeah. I mean, it’s, so, I think it’s more real than like, big data like that would big data turn around anymore, you know, people, but everybody back in the day, like, I don’t know, 15 years ago it was, oh, regardless of what else, oh, this is big data. So

Dave Mariani: I love it. I love it. So, Greg, just, this has been fantastic and I would encourage every, all the listeners out there, if you’re, if you’re into Power bi, if you’re, looking to get into Power bi, if you wanna get better at Power bi, start with Greg, and start with, with, with the stuff he’s written, it’s really super good, approachable, actionable, which is why I love your writing. So, what do you think, you know, what kind of advice would you give the listeners out there, Greg, about really about anything you know, you’ve seen a lot, you worked with a lot of customers, so what kind of advice would you give them as they sort of dive deeper into analytics and, and, and data

Greg Deckler: Yeah, I mean, I, well, my, my overall core philosophy in life is not to overcomplicate things. mm-hmm, right And keep it simple. so start simple, you know, and, and try to do simple things, you know, and keep and keep your data models as simple as possible to get the job done. and then, you know, and just start small and, and work your way up and naturally, you know, you’ll add, you know, as your requirements increase and as business requirements change and that you’re gonna, you’re gonna eventually add complexity and you’re gonna get into more complex topics and you know that all will happen naturally as an evolution. You know, don’t try to, you know, go out and boil the ocean right off the bat. you know, start small and, and work your way through it.

Dave Mariani: that’s fantastic advice. I completely agree. I live my life by those same terms, so thank you, Greg. So, with that, Greg, thank you for, thank you for a great chat today. and thank, thank you for listening, listeners out there, and stay data-driven. Thanks, everyone.

Greg Deckler: Thanks. 

Be Data-Driven At Scale