August 26, 2008 10:47 AM
Why I feel IT professionals have more Job security than other professionals do? Many industries, such as law, medical, engineering, etc, are regulated by where you practice your profession, but IT industry is not regulated by countries, it follows international accepted standards and that what make any experience you gained in any country counts toward your total experience.
Its relatively easy to transfer IT force from one country to another, since IT professionals don’t need any familiarization to the new country standards, and if there is any, it will be minimal.
So if we in IT and you love your job, feel secure about your job, your skills demand worldwide, you basically can pack, get in the plan and start new job in new country with in a week
July 1, 2008 10:22 AM
, IT management tips
, IT managers
, IT project management
, Quality assurance
As in IT consultant, I am sure you were asked this question many times “Should I turn my computer off at night or when I am not suing it or should I leave it on?”
I think the world is divided on this issue, some tech would tell you to turn if off and other would say, including myself, if you are a heavy computer user, never turn it off.
Turning the computer on and off each time would wear out its components, just like a car, if you turn it off each time you stop at the red light, you would harm the engine and other components.
But now, there is the issue of reducing energy use and green IT, is it better to turn off the computer when is not in use, or is it better to put it on standby mood or sleep mood? What would consume less energy? And if we have hundreds of computers, how much energy we would save verses how much tear and wear these computers would suffer for each start up procedure?
I don’t know the right answer, but I leave my laptop on most of the time, I still believe that power on procedure or start up takes a lot of energy to complete.
March 18, 2008 11:23 AM
IT management tips
, Project management
While addressing one of MBA graduation ceremonies at Harvard, Larry Allison of Oracles shocked his audience of the new graduates by telling them they may have lost their chances to be innovative and independent thinkers. I don’t recall the exact words he used, but that was the gist of what he said. Business leaders such as Larry Allison and Bill Gates were collage drop outs; they were successful because they were thinking out of the main stream, out of the box.
What was Larry Allison referring to is, by obtaining an MBA degree from such a prestigious school as Harvard, the students thought process was locked. By Obtaining an MBA from Harvard, the students are no longer independent thinkers when it comes to creativity and innovations, their thought process and problem solving skills are already set by Harvard standards.
The students’ minds are ingrained by Harvard ways, as these students hit the corporate world, their ability to think out of the box will be limited, and their problems solving skills will be limited to those that were taught at Harvard.
Is that means an investment in an MBA degree from Harvard is not worth the money and the efforts? I don’t have an answer to this question, but I know that creativity requires an independent mind with the least amount of influence to think freely.
March 1, 2008 1:30 PM
According to merriam-webster online dictionary, a Luddite is “one of a group of early 19th century English workmen destroying laborsaving machinery as a protest; broadly: one who is opposed to especially technological change.”
As the spread of technological changes is already upon us, will we see the luddites of the 21st century? The advancement in technology is threatening the jobs of many workers, especially farmers around the world. We see governments imposing tariffs, import/export restrictions, and giving subsidies to protect the jobs of its workers, but will these steps will really stop the technological advances which will really make some jobs obsolete?
Companies and managers will do a great service to their employees by keeping them informed about the advances in technology and offer training options to those who are ready to embrace the new realities of their work place.
One advice I always give when I am managing a project is “never stop learning.” you may have a union membership or the government protecting your job, but that wont last for long, sooner or later, technological changes may make your job obsolete and being a luddite wont help you keep your job.
November 25, 2007 12:52 PM
Conflict in the work place must be dealt with immediately; otherwise the consequences would be difficult to overcome. Bear in mind that dealing with conflict is not an easy task. A balance between all parties involved must be maintained by you as a manager.
Begin with these following steps and you can add more to the list as needed for your particular setup:
You must identify the conflict: this is a critical step; you can not resolve a conflict if you do not know the root cause of the conflict. You must develop a deep understanding of the cause of the conflict and have separate meetings with all involved.
You must determine whether it is a personality issue or a work issue: some conflicts arise from issues that have nothing to do with the work environment such as (cultural conflicts, gender conflicts, and religious conflicts).
You must remain open minded and impartial: when you listen to each party, remember to be open minded and listen to facts and not emotions. Conflicts usually charge people emotionally which may lead some employees to distort the facts, is its imperative to remain focused on the issue and separate facts from opinions.
Give the parties a chance to resolve it between themselves: having all parties involved resolve the conflicts themselves will lead to a greater understanding between them which will help in avoiding future conflicts.
If the above steps don’t work, then go through them again to ensure verification of the issue and then come to a compromise. As a manager, you must make a compromise that would be fair to all parties involved. You may not be able to please everyone, your resolve must be fair, impartial and based on full understanding of the conflict and in line with your firm’s policies and procedures.
It is makes good managerial sense to have a grievance policy in place that allows staff and team members to have a platform for resolution.
November 25, 2007 12:45 PM
One of the signs of a successful business is staff dynamics. Staff interaction could turn into a serious issue reflecting on the performance of the firm if the issue is not tackled in the early stages.
Almost every major corporation has specialists dedicated to manage staff conflict and ensure smooth interaction between employees at various levels. The size of your firm or the number of staff you manage, has no bearing, the potential for staff conflict is ever present.
As a successful manager, you must always bear in mind that there will be a source of conflict with any interaction between a group of people, human nature dictates this. You will be better prepared knowing what the signs and sources of potential conflict are.
Seniority conflict: in aviation there is a course taught by many airlines called” cockpit resource management”, this course was designed to keep the communications in the airplane cockpit smooth and eliminate any prejudice in the interaction between the pilot and the co-pilot. This course was developed because of the many fatal air craft accidents that were the result of seniority conflict between the senior airlines captain and the less experienced co-pilot. Many accidents would have been avoided had the captain listened to the continued warnings by his co-pilot.
Background conflict: in today’s global economy, it is common to find your staff made up of people with many cultural and religious backgrounds; this is an area open for potential conflict.
Gender conflict: there is general biased against women in managerial positions and many companies have tendencies not to hire women for IT positions.
Group conflict: various departments within the organization may compete for the same resources or one department may not communicate well with another department, which may have a serious impact on the work flow. Many universities today offer a degree program in “management information systems”, part of the program is to teach students how to facilitate communications between departments within the organization.
These are some major conflicts that I have experienced throughout my career; you may have experienced other types of conflict. As a manager you will need to maintain your calm and your objectivity as you deal with conflicts.
The next part of this article will go over some steps on how to deal with conflict within the work place.
October 27, 2007 11:00 PM
One of the challenges faced as a manager in any firm is how to find and
retain employees with the right combination of skills.
The global demand for manpower is overwhelming. Countries such as the US,
Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the European Union are competing for the
same combination of skills. One of the major providers of manpower, India, is
facing its own shortage of skills in certain areas and many Indians are
opting to remain at home where they are now receiving greater salaries than
Gone are the days when a manager or a firm has the final word in an
employee’s career. Today, an employee with the right skill mix, can compete
for positions at a global scale, where the demand is high and the
remuneration is competitive, as in today’s climate of employment suggests
that people can now map and forecast their own career path.
Countries who fail to retain their work force will face the challenge of
sustaining its growth.
As managers, you need to learn how to retain your top performers. These are
some of the areas you could focus upon, to give your employee a sense of job
1- continuous job training
2- continuous job performance review
3- immediate pay raise for good performance
4- if you have any foreign employees within your team, ensure that you action
any legal matters in a speedy manner, as one of the top reasons for a high
worker turn-over, is that the employee does not feel secure about their
future in a new country
5- we are living in a world where borders are disappearing and we now discuss
manpower on a global market rather than a local one. The world employment
market awaits the talent you are willing to forego, it is in your best
financial and technical competitiveness to cultivate and educate your
existing employees in the culture of your firm, as you have already invested
in their future. It makes good business sense to hold on to the talent you
October 21, 2007 11:08 PM
As managers, we strive for excellence in our work, we look for the best ways to deliver the final product and our daily struggle to come up with new ways to manage keeps our job exciting and challenging.
With my daily routine to browse the net looking for new methods and ideas to supplement my experience in management, I came across few management awards which are awarded for excellence in management.
I believe it’s a good practice tool to pick on one of these awards and go into more details about the criteria of achieving such award and compare your company readiness for such award.
1-MALCOLM BALDRIGE NATIONAL QUALITY AWARD.
This is the only award that I had time to visit their website and look closely at the idea behind the award and the requirements to qualify to enter to win the award.
I am thinking about implementing their quality management review at the small firm where I work, no intentions about wining any prize but use the award site as learning tool.
You can visit their website at: http://www.quality.nist.gov/
2-THE EUROPEAN QUALITY AWARDS.
You can visit their website at: http://www.eoq.org/SMEAwardsMoreInfo.html
3- THE DEMING PRIZE.
You can visit their website at:
4- THE CANADA AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE.
You can visit their website at:
5- AKAO PRIZE.
You can visit their website at:
For more information about these awards and many more, you can read the full article at: http://www.referenceforbusiness.com/management/Log-Mar/Management-Awards.html