Articles in the Professional Skills Category
Leaders are vital to an organization and are found at many levels. They provide direction, guidance, support, feedback, and decision making. A project manager leads a team or teams of people using the resources of the organization to meet goals that support organizational goals. Effective project management and leadership require effective communication.
Sometimes work sucks. No shock, Sherlock.
I don’t know how your 2012 turned out work-wise, but if it was less than perfect, I wouldn’t bet on 2013 being a walk in the park either. While your co-workers are preparing for the zombie apocalypse (Who needs a Mayan calendar right?), I’d suggest you take a moment or two to reassess your job satisfaction and consider a few ways to make 2013 more rewarding.
Luckily, I love my job, but on more than one occasion, I’ve had managers tell me they’re surprised at how well I evaluate my position. I grew up on a farm so I know there are way worse places I could be on a winter’s morning than a cubicle at Global Knowledge headquarters in Cary, NC.
If someone who is as jaded and sarcastic as I am (okay, at times I’ve even been called an insatiable whiner) can see the bright side of my job, surely I can help you do the same:
Blood-sucking freaks, man-made undead creatures with bolts in their necks, and beasts that only come out certain days of the moon cycle can be just as common in the workplace as they are on the silver screen or at your local Redbox kiosk.
Whether it’s that maniacal, foaming-at-the-mouth ogre in Finance trying to deny your latest expense request or the Creature from the Black Boardroom questioning the ROI of your CapEx proposal, there can be spooks, ghouls, and goblins at every turn in the workplace. Their attempts to terrorize the haven you call work can distract you from your real duties at hand.
Maybe I can help:
The ITIL intermediate exams are daunting. Exam candidates must read and fully understand a scenario, which can have many complex moving parts. Then, candidates must choose what they think is the best answer from a set of four possible answers. Sometimes all four possible answers look pretty good. The ITIL intermediate exams ask students to understand and apply their service management knowledge and sometimes to know when to forego application of that knowledge.
When Cisco Systems does an infographic, they do it right. Earlier this year, they released Demand for IT Networking Professionals in USA. The infographic was created using data from their own VNI (Visual Networking Index) forecasts as well as data from CareerBuilder, the US Bureau of Labor, Robert Half, and Global Knowledge’s 2012 IT Skills and Salary Report. That’s pretty elite company to be involved with I’d say.
There is a reason why the Agile methods are becoming mainstream. They can work! Although every Agile practice is not necessarily appropriate for every organization, each practice has delivered real value to many organizations, and some Agile practices can be used by anyone!
This four part series explores twelve ways in which the Agile methods are valuable. I’ll bet that you will find more than a few that could be valuable for you!
If you do not follow a proven “one-two” approach to manage staff engagement when introducing a new or changed strategy or process, then you can create resistance. Cloud requires significant changes to existing processes including project management, application development, and operations. Many IT leaders forget that every process requires an evaluation before, during, and after it transitions to operation. The evaluation must also include staff and management performance.
Business cases are typically detailed in documents, but the decision makers may expect a presentation. The document is typically divided into text and appendices. The presentation is usually high-level and may include a standardized set of slides that present the topics of most interest. A wise business analyst will make sure that the information is vetted with various members of the committee. A revisit of the business case may lead the portfolio management organization to cancel projects or rebalance the portfolio.
On Twitter last year, former Pixar illustrator Emma Coats shared a wealth of what she called “story basics” or concepts and ideas she and her Pixar colleagues used to create compelling stories for the digital animation company.
Knowingly or not, in the process, she shared tips that could also help any struggling writer. It’s been awhile since I wrote a piece of fiction, but I did find myself applying Pixar’s story guidelines to write my blog posts. While most of her tips are geared toward character development and plot, the ones about story development are a writer’s gold mine. Some of them every writer knows. Others, not so much. Either way, knowing these are techniques Pixar uses is pretty cool.
Here are a few of my favorites that can take anyone’s blog post “to infinity and beyond”: