The Chaotic Symphony. Throughout the course of a typical week in the office I attract action items and tasks like mosquitos on a summer night. They appear from every direction and often without notice as part of what I call organizational entropy. Most professional workers today have this dilemma because there are so many sources tasks can originate: Meeting minutes (usually in a word file or email) Meeting minutes (verbally given because no one wrote the minutes) Emails Ticketing system / Service desk Project plans (Excel, MS Project, Software Development System) Personal notebooks Hallway conversations CRM Customer requests for information It’s easy to get to a state where the loudest voices get my attention during the week and I lose all sense of priority. Having tasks in multiple places makes it easy to lose them and really difficult to see what is most important. Help! Make a Corral. I’ve tried
While I was reviewing the IT annual plan this week I remembered some of the recurring challenges that exist with annual plans. One of the biggest challenges is determining how to service and solution work that is not originally on the plan. The usual work initiators that meet this criterion are new business won, compliance/regulatory requirements, and custom requests from existing clients. When this happens, managers and business leaders have to determine how to shift priorities and possibly even postpone goals on the annual plan until the next year. It happens every year. Leaving contingency funds for the unexpected is a key concept in personal finance budgeting. A best practice with budgeting is to leave margin between your income and monthly obligations. This margin can be used for savings as well as unexpected expenses that occur during the month. What if we created business plans that provided margin between the
Show me the evidence. I think auditors chuckle inside when they say “show me the evidence.” It’s part of their craft to seek and inspect. Over the past several years I’ve been giving documentation and evidence to auditors for various IT controls. With regard to policies, procedures, and standard practices auditors want to see more than a one-time pieces of evidence. They want to see proof that the behavior is happening on a regular basis. It’s the classic audit trail. SharePoint – Love it. Hate it. I’ve had my moments with SharePoint on a few items related to workflow. But one valuable attribute I’ve found with the tool is the ability to version documents and lists. This capability creates the perfect audit trail and evidence proof. Example 1 – Annual Policy Updates I keep version information in two places for policy documents. The first is in the document header. This
How will I pass-down all my digital content? Last January, I penned my thoughts about how I could shape my personal digital legacy. The topic came up again this week during a holiday gathering and I referenced my previous blog post during the discussion. (Doesn’t it sound so geek to cite a blog post during a family discussion?) As we discussed digitizing photos and storing them “in the cloud” it occurred to me that content, such as photos, also need context to provide meaning. I was thinking about all the old family photos I’ve seen over the years. Not only did I not know who many of the people were in the photos but I also didn’t know anything about the event. I relied on my parents or grandparents to tell me who the people were and the story the photos captured. Without context the photos were meaningless to me
Most of the time when I browse and consume content on internet pages I’m trying to scan and read. Ads and videos that automatically start playing are more of a nuisance. They produce noise, delay the page from loading, and require I scroll through the page to stop them. Last year I disabled flash player content from playing automatically in my Chrome browser by disabling plugin in the settings. To do this type following in the web address bar: chrome://plugins/ Then disable the player but make sure the box is checked to allow it to run. Now a page that has videos that automatically load displays this Microsoft, Google, and Mozilla have announced plans to disable flash by default on future releases of their browsers. The reasons that drive this decision are performance and security. I’d like to add nuisance reduction as well 😉 Onward and upward!