Showing posts from February, 2006
Be Brief, Baby, Be Brief

A fellow job hunter asked, "How long should a resume be?" This is a classic question. Generally, the answer is no more than two pages. The job hunter countered: "But, with the various jobs I've had, the courses I've taken, and my publications, I've got a four page resume."

Here's the good news: The longer you stick around in your career, the more you bring to the table.

Here's the problem: You dont want to dump it all on the table at once.

Solution: Have multiple versions of your resume, a one-pager, a two-pager, and an expanded version. Typically I will provide the two-pager to recruiters.

Also, have a LinkedIn profile.

Finally, don't overlook the power of the cover letter. You can tailor the message to the job spec and include information about your capabilities that may not appear in the resume.

Many years ago, I learned the maxim Be Brief, Baby, Be Brief . It applies in many areas of life. Especially to the …
Slow Leadership

In business these days, "slow" is often a dirty word. Talk about slow and you are likely to get run over by the speed freaks.

As a long-time fan of slowing stuff down, I was gratified to come across a blog called Slow Leadership by blogger "Carmine Coyote" (who I suspect is Adrian Savage).

On the side, he lists these Eight Principles of Slow Leadership:

1. Right Tempo

2. Right Attention

3. Right Balance

4. Right Perspective

5. Right Direction

6. Right Relationships

7. Right Enjoyment

8. Right Gratitude

Seems like a thoughtful, considered approach to humane leadership in organizations.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/24/2006
Ich bin wieder beachtet worden...

Once again, German blogger Alexandra Graßler, at her blog, Wissensagentur, has taken note of one of my entries, Snow On the Roof, and she has spun it into an interesting piece on knowledge management.

How do I now? Well, since I neither read nor speak German, I had to translate the text using Altavista's Babel Fish translator. It comes out pretty rough, but you get the gist.

Beachtet zu werden ist nett.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/24/206
Be A Baby!

Blogger "Nimmy," from Aa-ha! - Thinking Inside the Blog, says that we should all strive to be more like babies: "I think everyone of us ought to be like - a cute and chubby baby - ready to learn, full of innocence, genuine, happy, forgiving, playful, creative, unconventional, original....."

I agree!

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/23/2006
Enduring Ideas

Blogger Colby Stuart has summarized a list of the ten ideas in management that are "most likely to affect the way we run our businesses."

As an organization development guy, I was thrilled by what is on this list including:

- Leadership Development

- Learning Organization

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/16/2006

Building A Common Culture

Yesterday's New Jersey Organization Development Network meeting, hosted at ADP in Jersey City, featured a presentation by Steve Prentiss, Sr. VP of HR at ADP, called "Acquisition Integration: Two Approaches for Building One Culture."

ADP, an international powerhouse in payroll and brokerage services, has been growing by acquisitions, with 34 in the past 10 years. According to Prentiss, while they have had their share of "raving successes," they have also seen some "abysmal failures."

Recognizing that they needed to learn from their acquisition and integration experiences, ADP launched a impressive organization development effort to improve their hit rate. With the help of a consultant, ADP designed a process to:

- gather input from employees who had come into ADP via past acquisitions
- identify good (and bad) practices
- set goals for future acquisitions

Boiling it down for us yesterday, Prentiss described two approaches that ADP has come up with for smoot…
What Makes A Successful Blog?

Dr. Walter Carl at Northeastern wants to know what makes a successful corporate blog and his Advanced Organizational Communication class intends to find out.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/15/2006

Usually WIIFM is translated as "What's in it for me." But not this time.

At his blog, David Gurteen wonders why people contribute to wikipedia --when there is neither recognition nor reward-- and finds that "Wiki's in it for me."

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/15/2006
Is OD a Laughing Matter?

Came across an Organization Development blog with an entry on humor.

Couple of thoughts:

Being an OD Guy and an active blogger, I have not seen many OD blogs; I'm happy that this blog surfaced. I wonder how many others are out there in the blogosphere?

As for treating humor as a serious matter in OD work, I have my doubts. While I enjoy humor as much as the next person, a project like this worries me. Is this a sign that OD is about to "jump the shark" into irrelevancy? I hope not.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/12/2006

Snow on the roof

There's an expression about virility in old age that goes something like this: "Though there may be snow on the roof, there is still fire in the furnace."

At a networking meeting this morning, the moderator gave this maxim his own twist by saying that some employers are realizing the value in hiring someone who has a little "snow on the roof," meaning someone who has experience, seasoning, and wisdom.

Many of those in attendance (most were male and over 40) chuckled at the moderator's turn of phrase. One guy, speaking for those of us who are bald, exclaimed, "Hey my roof has been plowed!"

Yet, the message hit home. Maybe there is a niche in this economy for those of us with some "snow on the roof."

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/11/2006
Don't Sell Yourself Short!

At a blog called How to Save the World, blogger Dave Pollard gives a discourse on discovering your genius, your passion, and your purpose.

Genius - what I'm good at

Passion - what I love doing

Purpose - what there is a great need for

Yesterday someone said to me, "Don't sell yourself short." It was one of those little slap-in-the-face epiphanies.

In the context of job hunting, it is very good advice to not sell yourself short. Job hunting is indeed a sales campaign. You need to know the features and benefits of the product you are selling, namely You. You need to be able to communicate your strengths to others, and relate your capabilities to the needs of hiring managers you will meet.

Find your genius, your passion, and your purpose. "Don't sell yourself short." That was one of my mother's sayings. Along with my personal favorite: "Life is what you make it."

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/09/2006
Leadership in the Newsroom

Apparently, newspapers are in a crisis and need to be reinvented. Here is a most interesting blog entry on leadership in the newsroom, spelling out what leaders should stop and start doing.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 02/08/2006

Impossible Things

I've always liked this line from Lewis Carroll:

"Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast."

Last year I attended a leadership training seminar where we were taught the concept of "impossible goals." It was very similar to BHAGs (i.e., "big hairy audacious goals") a term coined by management experts Jim Collins and Jerry Porras, I believe.

What makes an Impossible Goal and why would you want to have one?

Impossible Goals address things that need to be accomplished, but which appear to be out-of-reach for one reason or another. There seem to be too many insurmountable barriers.

An example might be the need to solve hunger and poverty in our world. Most would agree that this needs to be accomplished. Most would also agree that it is seemingly impossible.

So why set such a goal? Won't it be an exercise in frustration?

The reason why we should have such Impossible Goals is that, unless we have them, we won't reach them…
Underneath the Lintel

A night at the theater can be exhilarating. Even magical sometimes.

Last night my wife and I saw a play called Underneath the Lintel at the George Street Playhouse in our town of New Brunswick, NJ. This one-man, one-act play by Glen Berger is a riveting mystery, with humor and pathos, starring Richard Schiff of TV's West Wing (which I have never watched) and many movie roles including Jurassic Park II and The Arrival.

I did not know anything about this show in advance, except that we had heard it was "good." So going in "blind," I had no expectations for the show, but I was looking forward to seeing Schiff who I have enjoyed on the big screen.

It turns out that the play is an intriguing work in the vein of Umberto Eco's the Name of the Rose or Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, both favorites of mine as I am a fan of tales involving ancient mystery, religious myth, and the dogged search for truth.

Schiff, who often plays fussy nebbish type…
Changing How Managers Do What They Do

At the Innovation Insider blog, there is a link to an article by Gary Hamel about management innovation which Hamel defines as "a departure from traditional management practices," for example leadership development.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 2/2/2006