Where Is Your Change Management Plan?

There should be an image here!One thing I’ve noticed about IT shops is that they do a poor job of managing the people side of change. All the effort is spent on planning, implementing and rolling out a new technology with little thought as to how people are going to react to it and adopt it. For some reason, IT folks seem to think that plunking a new technology in front of someone is all it takes to get them to use it. I guarantee that this approach has resulted in a few failed projects.

People generally don’t like change. What an IT person may see as a great new technology, someone else will see as another change and therefore, will resist it. IT shops need to spend just as much time planning for and managing the people side as they do in planning and implementing the actual technology.

Change management needs to start as soon as the decision is made to bring in a new technology. In doing so, IT shops will find that people are more accepting of the change and more willing to adopt the new technology.

[Photo above by Dimitri N / CC BY-ND 2.0]

[awsbullet:Marcus Buckingham]

Provide Your Employees With Meaningful Feedback

Feedback, whether it is positive or negative, is an important part your employees’ professional growth and development. However, having a conversation with another person about their performance can be uncomfortable and as a result, many managers avoid having these conversations with their employees.

Believe it or not, employees want feedback on their performance and the more frequent, the better. Managers who do provide frequent feedback are likely missing golden opportunities to recognize as well as change employees’ behavior.

For those managers who struggle to provide feedback, here are some tips for making the process and conversation more effective:

  • Provide feedback in a timely manner. In fact, when you observe a specific behavior, feedback should be given as shortly after as possible.
  • Choose the correct medium. Positive feedback can be given almost anywhere — in a public forum, through email, during one-one meetings, etc. Negative feedback however should remain private and be delivered during one-one meetings.
  • Prepare yourself for the conversations. Take some time, even a few minutes, to think about what you want to say, particularly when you deliver negative feedback.
  • Stick to the behavior. Provide feedback about employee’s behavior, not about the employee.
  • Follow the facts. Any feedback provided should be based on facts. Do not base feedback on assumptions or on something you heard through the grape vine.

Finally, remember that the overall goal of any feedback conversation is to coach or guide employees’ behavior to improve performance.

[awsbullet:Make Their Day Employee Recognition That Works]

Yahoo Is BOSS After All

There should be an image here!Despite the success of Google’s Custom search, it seems that many are flocking to Yahoo’s BOSS option for something even more customizable. Using Yahoo’s own search APIs, BOSS allows its users to take the power of Yahoo Search and implement it in with their own content.

The biggest selling point for using BOSS is the fact that it is totally customizable. After all, you need only abide by the rules of the API and the rest is up to you. Make it yours to the extreme, no depending on Google’s restrictive templates.

As for thoughts on BOSS being bigger than Bing, as listed in this article, who cares? While both tools serve their perspective markets well, I don’t see either as being on the same field of play at this point. Bing is more for the end user while BOSS is clearly something cool for the web developer.

Yahoo Asks – Who’s The BOSS?

Yahoo is offering a new search service called BOSS [Build your Own Search Service] which is an open source answer that allows innovation for developers, start-ups and large Internet companies.  Yahoo is touting the fact that users will be able to access all of Yahoo’s features such as relevant algorithms, ranking, indexing and a host of other powerful infrastructure features. In addition Yahoo states that:

Search APIs are nothing new, but typically they’ve included rate limits, strict terms of service regarding the re-ordering and presentation of results, and provided little or no opportunity for monetization. These constraints have limited the innovation and commercial viability of new search solutions.

BOSS (Build your Own Search Service) is different – it’s a truly open API with as few rules and limitations as possible. With BOSS, developers and start-ups now have the technology and infrastructure to build next generation search solutions that can compete head-to-head with the principals in the search industry. BOSS will grow and evolve with a focus on providing additional functionality, tools, and data for developers.

Though I can see where Yahoo is heading with this new feature, it begs to answer the following questions. Why wasn’t this done long ago, before Microsoft make their takeover overtures?  Will Yahoo be able to attract anyone to the new service with the threat of Yahoo being consumed by Microsoft?

I don’t believe if in fact Microsoft takes over Yahoo search, that the company will allow BOSS to proceed.

But what do you think? Is Yahoo’s BOSS program just a little late in coming?

Comments welcome.



Employer vs. Employee

What kind of worker are you? Lockergnomie John Howard Oxley had a response to an earlier post on Extreme Multitasking:

I think this misses the point entirely — what is going on is something new in the world — the corporate environment can now use IT to select for the best worker bees on a Darwinian basis. Those of us who have any sorts of attachments outside of work, like family, hobbies, or even watching sunsets while smoking a good cigar will, of course, overload, sicken, and die [or be pushed aside to the economic scrapheap, which is an equivalent death sentence]. The lucky few [and in a severely overpopulated world only a few are needed] will be the Type A workaholics who, conditioned by the new environment of games, instant communication, and constant stimulation, thrive on the multitasking 24/7 routines.

I know at least a couple of people who, over the short run at least [and in the long run, replacing a burnt-out worker is cheap and easy] seem to thrive in exactly this environment. One thing they have in common — they profess to need little or no sleep — this may be an actual selective mutation.

Remeber that the boss doesn’t care [economically, it is suicide for him to try] — all he wants are those most willing to work the hardest, over the most hours, for the least pay. The technologies of the InterNet have made this Darwinian selection now operate globally as well — and we may in fact see that other cultures, like the Chinese and Japanese, which have been selecting for hard workers with few individual requirements for many generations, are superior to North America in ways that give them a permanent competitive advantage.

The outlook is plain — for all but a priveleged few, the new technological life will become more Hobbsean — perhaps not so “solitary”, but definitely “poor, nasty, brutish, and short”. Talk about unintended consequences!

So, what kind of worker are you?

[tags]overworked, boss, employer, employee, work, work ethic[/tags]


The Internet has made it very easy for us to find information on anybody. Assuming that the person in question has some sort of online presence, all you have to do is fire up Google, type their name in, and watch as the personal history rises to the top. The rough thing for the person being searched for in this approach is that anything involving their name on the Internet has the potential of scrolling across the eyeballs of anyone – even potential bosses. Kind of makes you regret that one thing you did that one time, eh? Regardless, people will see the good, but they’ll also see the bad, the ugly, and any other misrepresentation. To take control over what people see when they search for you, consider creating a profile on Naymz.
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