Innovation vs Protection

At a time when design thinking, innovation centers, accelerators, incubators, agile frameworks, and speed-to-market are common discussions, Adrian Pelkus brings up some good points regarding the negative impacts the America Invents Act (AIA) could be having on inventors, start-ups, and the SMB communities in his short article entitled “The America Invents Act was Wrong from the Start“.


The one word that every people leader needs to add to their vocabulary

There is a Harvard Business Review article published back in 2014 entitled “Managers Can Motivate Employees with One Word.”  In summary, the research calls attention to the fact humans are relational beings and being relational means living in relation to others in recognition of an interconnectedness with others.  As a people leader we want high employee engagement, high performance, and outstanding results.  In order to achieve this we must motivate those around us.  So as human beings, what gives us a feeling of being connected?…Working or knowing we are together.

Underpaid?..Need a Job Description?.. Want to Change Careers?

If you are looking for written job descriptions, salary benchmarks, and/or career profiles, here are some good resources from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). Some of the data is based on 2015 and 2016, but the majority of the existing content is still valid. Unfortunately, the U.S. DOL has not updated their databases with more recent “jobs” like CISO, DevOps, CDO, etc…

  • My Next Move – this site helps you explore different careers (e.g., knowledge, skills, abilities-KSAs needed for a job, typical personality traits of successful individuals in a certain job, common technology used in a certain job, typical educational requirements, and a job outlook)
    • For Vets – a subsection of the above mentioned website that caters to veterans who may be transitioning. E.g., find a career that is similar to your military job
  • O*NET Online – this site was created for the general public to provide broad access to the O*NET database of occupational information. This is a great resource for helping you fine tune your job descriptions and profiles.
  • Occupational Outlook Handbook – this site provides facts about different careers as it relates to median pay (including state and area data), number of jobs, similar occupations, and the job outlook.

Sharpen Your Life: 52 Strategic Moments to Create a Lifetime of Success

If you know anything about me, then you know I am motivated by the opportunity to learn new things. I just recently read a great book that provided some unique perspectives and helpful reminders. If you have time for a quick read, check out Sharpen Your Life: 52 Strategic Moments to Create a Lifetime of Success by Joe Jordan.

Here are some of my highlights from the reading…

  • “Take the time to find a corporate culture that suits you.”
    • In my opinion, this hasn’t been top-of-mind for most Baby Boomers and Generation X’ers. Millennials seem to be prioritizing this more and I think they are onto something. In order for us to be our authentic selves, it helps to be in a comfortable environment which aligns to who we are, what we believe, and how we behave.
  • Take risks and don’t be afraid to stretch yourself.
    • This seems to be harder to do with age, but it is absolutely part of living a fulfilled life.
  • “A Carnegie Mellon University study found that brain activation for listening dropped 53 percent if the person listening tried to process a visual input at the same time.”
    • As much as we would like to be or think we are, we can’t really multi-task!
  • “Your future resides where preparation intersects with opportunity.”
    • Life is a journey and we must continue to push ourselves in preparation for the opportunities that will come our way. Opportunities will come, but will we be prepared to recognize them and act on them (take a risk)?
  • “No one has your abilities, strengths, and experience in the same package as you. Your blend of accomplishments, personality, and expertise are your differentiators.”
    • Great perspective.
  • “Whatever your skill set, your greatest competitive edge is being authentically you.”
    • We need to embrace what it is that we know the most.
  • “The success of any enterprise always depends on people. Be wary of corporate leaders that use terms to describe people that could interchangeably describe a piece of equipment.”
  • “Many people die with their music still in them.”

Great Motivational Video

If you are looking for a great motivational and inspiring video to share with your teams at your next All-Hands meeting, you may want to consider this one. It’s a classic.

As One Summoning the Force

How to Secure Your Emails Using Gmail…For Free!

With the increase in security attacks and the rising anxiety this creates among technology users, there are free browser-based plugins that give you the option to send and receive encrypted emails using Gmail.

Most of us have an email encryption option/solution at work. However, a very small number of technology users have an email encryption option/solution for their personal communications.

If we were physically mailing a letter to a family member telling them the spare key to the front door is hidden under the door mat, we might consider different options like sending the letter certified, asking for a return receipt, and/or ensuring the contents of the package/letter. So how do you secure your electronic mail and specifically Gmail?

There are a number of options in the marketplace and one of the biggest reasons users haven’t adopted encrypted email solutions is because of the challenging user experience. It took me 3 minutes to download, install, configure, and send an encrypted email using Mailevelope. If you get a chance, it may be worth checking out.

Remember “Poulsen’s law” which states that information is secure when it costs more to get it than it’s worth. 

Health, Wearables, and the NFL!

NFL players given the option to commercialize their WHOOP data.

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