Tuesday, September 22, 2009

When Ego Takes Over

Have you seen what happen when ego takes over ... even the best of the best fails, forget about ordinary. But the problem is it's so difficult to figure out that you are under the control of your ego.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

From Rules of Thumb: 52 Principles for Winning

Few rules from Rules of Thumb: 52 Principles for Winning at Business without Losing Your Self by Alan Webber.

  • If you want to change the game, change the economics of how the game is played
  • All money is not created equal
  • On your way up, pay attention to your strengths; they'll be your weaknesses on the way down
  • Learn to take “no” as a question
  • Failure isn’t failing, failure is failing to try
  • You Don't Know If You Don't Go
  • Knowing It Isn’t The Same As Doing It
  • Don't Confuse Credentials With Talent.
  • Loyalty is a two way street

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Software Engineering as a Profession

In November 2008, I talked to a group of my colleagues with Software Testing background about making Software Testing a Profession – how a tester can become a Test Professional. My motivation for that discussion was due to the fact that most of the software testers, particularly in Indian IT scenario, are skilled in finding bugs in software systems and not much skilled in improving overall software quality. While less or no defects greatly contribute to the overall quality of the system but there are lot more attributes to define quality of a software systems. I feel this is primarily because of our “Skill Building” centric focus – rather than have a concerted focus on Knowledge, Processes and Skill we are focus on enhancing skills. However, no one knows how long we will keep chasing "skills". In the similar line yesterday I found an interesting news from IEEE Computer Society about making Software Engineering as a Profession. It says "Since computer engineering is at least a century younger than electrical, mechanical, and civil engineering, Burgess said it’s not surprising that the five computing disciplines—computer science, information systems, software engineering, computer engineering, and information technology—all still have a skills focus." While it is understandable from an organization's perspective but it's difficult to understand why our academia also follows the same path.

I will keep this subject alive in my mind but for now let me go ...

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Nothing is Free

Nothing is free - everything has a cost - whether we pay directly or indirectly is a differnt matter. At the same time, I am sure many of us has also come across the tag line "Doing More for Less". So in the paradime of "Nothing is Free", the thought that troubles me how can one get more out of less when we know nothing is really free. My thoughts took me to google and today morning I found an interesting book on the same subject "Free: The Future of a Radical Price" by Chris Anderson where the auther is talking about the Economics of Abundance & why zero pricing is changing the face of business. In real economics term the idea looks absurd to me but I would defer my judgment till I read the book (hopefully!). However, any common sense will tell you that if you not paying through your wallet you are paying it in a differnt way.

I know today's changing business worls these seemingly absurd ideas are creating values for the shareholder and customers. A typical example is internet music where you get to listen an advertisement before you get your song but I don't know how many people will like that approach. I know ragaa.com was doing that some time back was playing citibank's advertisement but I heard they have stopped doing that instead put asvertisement in thier website. One of my senior has also talked about similar concept on video - show people new movie free of cost but show them advertisement in between. And there are probably many more such inovative thoughts and products. But the question is are they really free?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Invest in Yourself

How many of us really invest in ourselves - for our tomorrow, for day after and day day after...? I have been asking this question for quite sometime to my colleagues - most of them are highly educated and talented people. Some of them are from most premier institutes of the country -India. Some of them have good experience in Information Technology Industry. Few of them are rated highly within the organization.

No surprise, answer to my question is a big silence! And this is a typical scenario in every other organization. Though we are in knowledge economy but bulk of the knowledge workers don't invest in enhancing their knowledge for tomorrow. Organizations today spent a good amount of money in learning and people development programs but 100% (correct me if I am wrong) of these programs are for enhancing employees tool specific skills. Essentially, addressing the urgent needs of the organization and NOT the important needs - talent development for tomorrow. And I don't think this situation will change primarily due to the fact that Organization wants ROI quickly and particularly in IT industry the life span of employees are not long. So what is the solution? Most of you would agree that we need to invest in ourselves for our future but question is how and probably the bigger question is where? I believe "how" part is relatively simple to handle, problem is where.

Where to Invest : To address where to invest we need to understand what a knowledge worker does on day to day basis. The answer is quick and simple - Solve Business Problems. And, fundamentally our education systems focus is also on this subject - develop individual talents in problem solving.