Even with Power Downloader's amazing ability to track down Internet criminals, he's not always the best at staying organized. Between sifting through countless secret documents, maintaining the Power lair, and traversing the globe on the tail of digital desperadoes, Power could quickly lose track if he didn't have help. Fortunately, he also has the ability to find the perfect software for any problem.… Read more
At one time or another, most of us have found ourselves in a work situation that just isn't working out. We agonize and obsess over it and eventually come to the conclusion that it's time to move on.
At that point, if you think you can make an earnest go of a job hunt while employed, then fine, go for it. When you find a job that you think will make you happier, quit and get on with your life.
But for many of us, that's not the case. If you're considering quitting without a new job to jump to, this post may help you.
Quitting has the benefit of instantly ending the pain and providing satisfaction at being the one who pulled the plug. However, you'll be forgoing compensation while you search for a new position, which can be stressful and result in a premature and perhaps ill-advised job choice.
Another option is to get terminated or laid off. The downside is that age-old stigma of getting fired, not to mention feelings of rejection and a blow to your ego. But, if you can handle that, you'll find that this option has a lot going for it. If you play your cards right, you can end up with time to chill and search for a job at a relatively leisurely pace.… Read more
When I was a little kid I was scared of all kinds of things: my dad, the neighborhood bully, yellowjackets, monsters under the bed, ghosts in the closet, you name it. Now I'm a grown-up and I'm not scared of anything...except my wife.
But it wasn't that long ago that someone scared me even more than my wife did. My boss. Actually, I had a string of scary bosses. Managers definitely have a way of being intimidating, and there's a very good reason for that. It's because they can.
Bosses can bully you, scream at you, threaten you, and even terrorize you. Most importantly, they can fire you or even worse--make your life so miserable you wish they'd fire you. In fact, at-will employment gives bosses the power to do almost anything they want, as long as it's legal.
What can you do about it? Well, you can do anything you want; it's a free country. You can quit, yell at your wife, kick the dog, punch a hole in your kitchen wall, or become a monk and submit to a vow of poverty. But all that's likely to get you is divorced, bitten, a broken hand, and a shaved head.… Read more
Does your boss act out and throw tantrums like a spoiled child? Does your company ship most of its product the last 24 hours of the quarter? Are you afraid to bring up certain hot-button issues in meetings for fear of being humiliated? Do you spend more time covering your ass than you do sitting on it? Is your company in a perpetual state of limbo because nobody can make a decision? Does your company's mission statement change weekly?
These are all signs of a dysfunctional workplace. But don't fret; you're not alone. In fact, an entire lexicon has grown up around dysfunctional corporate behavior. See if you can recognize some of the issues that drive you and your co-workers nuts in these definitions:
Analysis paralysis. Chronic debating that obstructs the decision making process. Often a systemic problem within a company and a symptom of dysfunctional leadership, processes, and pretty much everything else. Also see disruptive management style.
Breathing your own fumes. When executives actually start to believe and make decisions based on the spin-doctored bulls--t they consistently spew out to the media, analysts, investors, customers and employees.
Blowing smoke up someone's ass. Feeding an insincere compliment or bulls--t to someone who should know better but hasn't been around long enough to develop a healthy, cynical filter against that sort of thing. Not to be confused with having your head stuck up someone's ass.… Read more
When Power Downloader recently realized his backup system was beginning to grow cluttered, he knew he needed to take action. As someone who routinely backs up case files and secret documents to separate drives for safe keeping, the first area Power decided to clean up was where there might be duplicates or outdated files. The only problem was, with so many versions of similar files on several drives, he wasn't sure what to keep and what to delete.… Read more
I like this idea. Will Hurley of BMC is calling for a meet-up of those on the vendor and customer side of systems management. Why? To allow people to get together to shape the future of the systems management market.
One-on-one with a vendor is useful but limiting. This idea provides for a more collaborative approach to solving customer problems:… Read more
In a prior post I whined about the shortcomings of climbing the corporate ladder. What I neglected to mention is that, after years of horrific behavior modification that some call management training, I eventually became pretty good at it. In fact, I was a manager and an executive for more than 20 years.
During that time I developed a pretty good sense, from both sides of the equation, of the qualities that executives look for in up-and-comers. So, if you're one of those gluttons for punishment (and compensation) who seek a place in the esteemed ranks of corporate management, here's some free advice on how best to get there.
One caveat, though. Depending on how you interpret them, these qualities can have different meanings. They can even be watered down into almost meaningless, generic dribble. I've seen that done in dozens of corporate "core value" statements. So I tried to provide meaningful descriptions to for clarity's sake.
Ten qualities executives seek in up-and-comers:
Passion. Driven to get the job done and do it right; passion for one's function, the marketplace, the company's product, work in general; high energy level
Intelligence. There's no substitute for intelligence, with emphasis on insight, analysis of complex problems, deductive reasoning, out of the box thinking
Fearless. Willing to take risks, embrace new challenges, make mistakes, and say what's on one's mind without fear of consequences; opposite of CYA mentality
Leadership. Innate ability to motivate people to willingly do one's bidding, especially when there's no direct benefit for them to do so… Read more
If it takes you longer to locate a particular browser bookmark than it does to search for that same Web page, it may be time to rev up AM-DeadLink. This nifty freeware utility for managing browser bookmarks becomes increasingly useful as your favorites list grows more congested.
With one button, AM-DeadLink produces a list of bookmarks on the browser you select, pointing out broken or unlisted links. Another button bumps problem bookmarks to the top of the list, saving you from hunting and pecking among the thickets of text. A button identified by an image of cloned human figures reveals any duplicate bookmarks that may have been tucked away in multiple subfolders. Unwanted links are easily disposed of with a click on the recycle bin. For a quick reminder of what leads to what, users can preview bookmark destinations within the app. Backing up the bookmark list serves as a more long-term reminder.… Read more
Classics buffs will remember RealPlayer as the first major digital-media player to sweep the MP3 world. RealPlayer 10 (for Mac and Windows ) sees the legacy of managing your digital library and playing tunes, and ups the ante with added features for optimizing tunes and video. Yet information-choked tabs and constant promotions for premium service get real old, real fast--especially when other (truly) free services out there offer most of RealPlayer's features, minus the open, expectant palm.