Quote – Doing The Work Yourself

Writing and The Written Word

The wise man will commit no business of importance to a proxy when he may do it himself.

— Roger L’Estrange

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The Law of Power

Writing and The Written Word

The Law

The fundamental law of power is that it is situational, multifaceted, dynamic, and perishable.

Power is Situational

Power is without a doubt situational, a person who is very politically powerful, but having no wilderness knowledge or skills, find themselves alone in the middle will have less ability to save themselves, than an experienced woodsman.

Power is Multifaceted

Power has many attributes (social influence, mental reference, innate ability, and situation), which aggregate to provide the total of your power at in given time and in any given situation

Power isDynamic

As a person’s situation changes, their ability to influence the situation can be increased, decreased, and/or lost. Also, facets of power are not static but are morphed by change.

Power isPerishable

A person can, through inaction, lose the ability to influence a situation forever.

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Success – You must love your work?

Writing and The Written Word

Why you should love your work

Sooner or later you will wonder why you are not passionate and energized about your work. At the same time, an inner voice will tell you to suck it up because work is only a four-letter word and you are not supposed to enjoy it.

It is a misconception because loving your work can bring manage benefits. Work should enable and empower, not entrap. Here we have some of the reasons why you should love your work.

Helps with your success

When you love your career, no one can stop you from getting successful. You will do everything that it takes to assure that your customers love what you are offering, and your boss appreciates your every move. You would prefer to collect the appreciation because your every move will be well planned, and you will not be afraid…

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Management Principles – You can’t Manage what you don’t Measure

Writing and The Written Word

Management and Measurement

You can’t manage what you don’t measure is an old management adage that has been used for many years and while most attribute it to Peter Drucker, some claim that the quote was first used by Dr. W. Edwards Deming, although it is a bone of contention whether or not the quote is used in the correct context.

Irrespective of who said it first, I have always agreed with the principle. Coming from a corporate background where this is one of the management principles often used, I was surprised to learn that there are those that strongly disagree with the statement. This group argues that there are many things being managed at work that aren’t measurable, from the confidence we instill in a new, young manager, to the quality of new hires.

The argument is made that quantity is easy…

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Personas Vs. Roles – What Is The Difference?

Personas and roles are user modeling approaches that are applied in the early stages of system development or redesign. They drive the design decision and allows programmers and designers to place everyday user needs at the forefront of their system development journey in a user-centered design approach.

Personas and user roles help improve the quality of user experience when working with products that require a significant amount of user interaction. But there is a distinct difference between technology personas vs. roles. What then exactly is a persona? What are user roles in system development? And, how does persona differ from user roles?

Let’s see how these two distinct, yet often confused, user models fit in a holistic user-centered design process and how you can leverage them to identify valuable product features.

Technology Personas Vs. Roles – The Most Relevant Way to Describe Users

In software development, a user role describes the relationship between a user type and a software tool. It is generally the user’s responsibility when using a system or the specific behavior of a user who is participating in a business process. Think of roles as the umbrella, homogeneous constructs of the users of a particular system. For instance, in an accounting system, you can have roles such as accountant, cashier, and so forth.

However, by merely using roles, system developers, designers, and testers do not have sufficient information to conclusively make critical UX decisions that would make the software more user-centric, and more appealing to its target users.

This lack of understanding of the user community has led to the need for teams to move beyond role-based requirements and focus more on subsets of the system users. User roles can be refined further by creating “user stand-ins,” known as personas. By using personas, developers and designers can move closer to the needs and preferences of the user in a more profound manner than they would by merely relying on user roles.

In product development, user personas are an archetype of a fictitious user that represents a specific group of your typical everyday users. First introduced by Alan Cooper, personas help the development team to clearly understand the context in which the ideal customer interacts with a software/system and helps guide the design decision process.

Ideally, personas provide team members with a name, a face, and a description for each user role. By using personas, you’re typically personalizing the user roles, and by so doing, you end up creating a lasting impression on the entire team. Through personas, team members can ask questions about the users.

The Benefits of Persona Development

Persona development has several benefits, including:

  • They help team members have a consistent understanding of the user group.
  • They provide stakeholders with an opportunity to discuss the critical features of a system redesign.
  • Personas help designers to develop user-centric products that have functions and features that the market already demands.
  • A persona helps to create more empathy and a better understanding of the person that will be using the end product. This way, the developers can design the product with the actual user needs in mind.
  • Personas can help predict the needs, behaviors, and possible reactions of the users to the product.

What Makes Up a Well-Defined Persona?

Once you’ve identified user roles that are relevant to your product, you’ll need to create personas for each. A well-defined persona should ideally take into consideration the needs, goals, and observed behaviors of your target audience. This will influence the features and design elements you choose for your system.

The user persona should encompass all the critical details about your ideal user and should be presented in a memorable way that everyone in the team can identify with and understand. It should contain four critical pieces of information.

1. The header

The header aid in improving memorability and creating a connection between the design team and the user. The header should include:

  • A fictional name
  • An image, avatar or a stock photo
  • A vivid description/quote that best describes the persona as it relates to the product.

2. Demographic Profile

Unlike the name and image, which might be fictitious, the demographic profile includes factual details about the ideal user. The demographic profile includes:

  • Personal background: Age, gender, education, ethnicity, persona group, and family status
  • Professional background: Occupation, work experience, and income level.
  • User environment. It represents the social, physical, and technological context of the user. It answers questions like: What devices do the user have? Do they interact with other people? How do they spend their time?
  • Psychographics: Attitudes, motivations, interests, and user pain points.

3. End Goal(s)

End goals help answer the questions: What problems or needs will the product solution to the user? What are the motivating factors that inspire the user’s actions?

4. Scenario

This is a narrative that describes how the ideal user would interact with your product in real-life to achieve their end goals. It should explain the when, the where, and the how.

Conclusion

For a truly successful user-centered design approach, system development teams should use personas to provide simple descriptions of key user roles. While a distinct difference exists in technology personas vs. roles, design teams should use the two user-centered design tools throughout the project to decide and evaluate the functionality of their end product. This way, they can deliver a useful and usable solution to their target market.

What Is A Competitor Battle Card?

Writing and The Written Word

In theory, competitor battle cards
are not that hard to put together. All it takes is a little bit of content to
use to persuade clients in a sales environment. What many people find is that
being concise is a challenge. It takes some time and practice, but with a
little bit of planning and overall know-how about the industry, any person can
start putting together cards that work.

What are
competitor battle cards?

The simplest way to describe
competitor battle cards is that they are short, to the point pieces of
information about a business that paints them in a positive light directly
against the competition. Videos, graphs, spreadsheets and simple text are all
used on different cards.

Once these battle cards are put
together, they are given to the entire sales team. When they are in any…

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Are Information Technology Skill Badges Valuable?

Information Technology (IT) Skill badges are becoming more prevalent in the information technology industry, but do they add value?  I will be in the past I have only bothered with certifications where my clients or my employer thought they were valuable.  At some point in your career experience should mean more tests and training.  So, perhaps is time to consider the potential value of IT Skills badges (Mini-certification) and the merits behind them.

What Are Information Technology (IT) Skills Badge?

IT Skills badges are recognized as mini-certification, which are portable. IT Skills badges are achieved when an individual completes a project, completes a course, or make a distinguished contribution towards code repository on either GitHub or elsewhere. When a person earns this kind of certification, the IT Skills badges can be stored in a digital wallet. An individual can use it by either including it to his/her LinkedIn profile or website. The issuer has the authority of editing the badges. This feature is designed to bolster credibility.

Research shows that many IT job applicants show badges as an added advantage in his/her skills. IT skills badge are not a sure bet in job hunting that an applicant will land on that particular job because most job recruiters don’t focus on them.

Many IT industries want validated skills before hiring an applicant. IT Skills badges are complementary to certificates, but IT Skills badges can’t in any way replace certifications. Individuals with convectional certifications have high chances of landing on premium pay. As a result, badges don’t ensure the owner a pay boot in his/her job.

How Do IT Skills Badges Differ From A Certification?

Certifications are considered evidence by many of an individual’s skills. Does this mean that any other credential systems aren’t necessary for proving your skills? IBM’s study shows that technology is growing at a faster rate in areas like artificial intelligence, big data, and machine learning and the updating and creation of certifications can lag because of the time required to update or developing certifications is lengthy.

Another difference when it comes to comparison between IT Skill Badges and certification is that certifications are seen to be more expensive to both employers and employees. It is costly to achieve certification, and a lot of study time and books may be required. An in-depth done survey shows that employers are willing to pay a good portion to the right certification. Certificate value is drastically increasing value yearly as compared to badges.

Clients of IT companies consider engaging in a contract with the company after making sure that the company has a specific number of employees with specified certifications. IT Skills badges are at a disadvantage for hiring consideration. Most hiring managers, the likes of Raxter Company, don’t know the benefit of badges or even what IT Skills badges can do with IT Skills badges. IT Skills badges are new in the market; hence, most employers have little information about IT Skills badges. For instance, an applicant who in the past years has worked for IBM Company presents an IBM badge to Raxter interview panel, and the panel will not know what it means.

In the case of Grexo Technology Group’s CEO, Bobby Yates, IT services Company in Texas doesn’t know the apparent value of IT skills badge. He further challenges it by saying that most applicants have presented the badges to him. But he surely doesn’t know the importance of them towards his requirements from the applicants. He further says that he doesn’t consider badges as a valuable hiring tool as compared to certification.

Dupray’s Tremblay, on the other hand, seconds the elimination of badges as an essential tool for hiring by saying that he will not know if the applicant is cheating to him. As a result, he values the certification as a real prove of skills towards IT.

How To Obtain IT Skills Badges

Most Companies’ hiring panels consider IT Skills badges as nothing towards job requirements. But some companies’ managers like O’Farril and others challenge them by finding them worthy when it comes to IT workers investment. CompTIA’s Stanger, on the other hand, backs badges by referring to them as a complement to a basket of certifications, good resumes, and real-world towards job experience. He adds by saying that it is a form of strengthening the education chain. Raxter on his personality considers IT Skills badges as a selling point. As a result, IT Skills badges are essential to present to some recruiters.

The following are the top five tips that will aid an individual towards his carrier advancement in getting the most in IT skills badges.

1. Avoid listing badges which are easily obtained. Anything that can take less than 40 hours to complete it is unworthy of mentioning it in your professional resume.

2. Always consider those courses that directly aline with the type of jobs for which you are applying. IT skills badges that directly complements to your job requirements are worth taking. Irrelevant badges may, to an extent, reduce the chances of being recruited.

3. Make sure to pair the badges attained with your education or real working experience.

4. Don’t insist on the importance behind your badges. Not everybody will like to hear. Real work experience always takes the lead.

5. If you can’t defend your knowledge, experience, and skills or hiring managers will consider unqualified. ITSkill badges and certifications show that you had enough knowledge to pass the qualifications, but employees want people who can and will excel at doing the work as part of a team. requirements

Do IT Skills badges have value in the hiring process?

IT skills complement IT certification and act as an added advantage in hiring panel, mostly when your certification is almost similar to the other candidates. IT Skills badges add some value towards a good resume, real job experience, and certifications. Some recruiters consider IT Skills badges worthy when it comes to the hiring process. Recruiters think them as a selling point.

So it’s essential to take IT Skills badges that relate to your job application to spice your application form. Remember to keep in mind the top five tips when you decide to have one. In other words, IT Skills badges are somehow worthwhile to consider in IT workers investments.

IT skills badge from a social media perspective

Social Media badges are virtual validator of successful completion of a task, skill, or educational objective. IT Skills badges can either be physical or digital depending upon what other people in a particular community value or market. IT Skills badges are more prevalent in a collaborative environment, and social media as well as portals and learning platforms, including team participation, certification, degrees, and project accomplishments.

In conclusion, many IT skills are available for your earnings. To gain more on IT Skills badges, you can visit IBM, Pearson VUE, a global learning company, and others who have partnered in offering IT Skills badges. You will be able to find a range of IT Skills badges from which to choose.