I really appreciate it when people send me good articles. I was greatly flattered by a previous employee and a good friend who sent me the article above ( http://www.slate.com/articles/business/small_business/2012/10/the_value_of_a_good_boss_stanford_researchers_show_the_economic_value_of.html ) with a note of thanks.
Findings for what a good boss brings to the table and how to place them:
- The productivity gains (roughly 66%) from a good boss imparted on the employees lasts beyond that boss, most of which will be lost within 6 months.
- Those gains come “…from teaching them better work methods”
- You should couple the best bosses with the best employees
That leads to some potentially interesting interpretations like:
- With regards to productivity gains, and those improvements persisting, the concept of a loaner employee from the strong team might be worthwhile to investigate
- If you want to impart better work methods on technical employees then they should be managed by a technical manager.
- By coupling the best employees with the best boss, the idea of team that greatly tips the scales as far as effectiveness on a team is one to enforce, but you would want to make sure they are working on the most important thing for the company.
- My interpretation of why you should couple the best employees with the best manager is to challenge both in the relationship. For example my previous direct report and friend who sent me this article is keeping me engaged and interested, and an underperformer would do no such thing.
- I know that this is an extreme stretch to the applicability of this article, but the idea that schools no longer want to have GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) and other programs to provide additional challenge to high-performing young children and prefer to mix in underperformers with the hope of improving them through exposure to these high-performers is great detriment to the high performers and the good teachers that you would couple with the high-performers.
Here are some of the settings for eclipse that I think are essential:
- Window->Preferences->Java->Appearance->check “Compress all package name segments,…” = 1~.
- Window->Preferences->Java->Appearance->check “Abbreviate package names”…
- Window->Preferences->General->Editors->Size of recently opened files list”=15
- Window->Preferences->General->Editors->Text Editors->check “Show whitespace characters”
- Window->Preferences->General->Network Connections->SSH2->Key Management->Generate DSA Key
- Window->Preferences->Java->Compiler->Errors/Warnings->change everthing to at least warning except for “Redundant null check” and check “Name Shadowing and conflicts->Local Variable declartion hides another field or variable->Include constructor or setter method parameters”
- Window->Preferences->Java->Compiler->Javadoc->Warning “Malformed Javadoc comments” and set it for down to “Private” visiblity
- Window->Preferences->Java->Editor->Content Assist->uncheck “Use static imports”
Another tremendous opportunity from the good folks at Idealab for the operating companies, Making Time Work: Maximizing Your relationship with the Clock.
David Allen - practical list focused
Tony Schwartz - energetic, rhythm etc..
Time management wagon is easy to fall off, but try to get back on.
Things that get in the way to getting tasks done
- Is there a better option?
- is it a problem
- social media
- personal life
- incomplete info
- water cooler
- inadeequate tools
- moral decision
- last minute decions
- lack of clarity
- How we think about and approach work activity
- How we manage (and sometimes manage up) work impediments
- Tips and tools for getting stuff done
Urgent & Important Matrix
Important Goals Critical Activities Distractions Interruptions
To avoid interruptions
- stand up when people walk up to you
- put up a sign that says your busy
- move them to a conference room
- wear headphones
- tell them your busy
- hide someplace else, conf room, exchange desks with somebody
To handle interruptions
- Establish clear boundaries for yourself: Let people know when you are available, and when you are not.
- Create concentration blocks: Establish certain times (e.g. 0-11:00am every day) when you are only focused on important, urgent project work. People will come to understand you’re in your “zone” during these times and respect that.
- Implement the “Hair on Fire” Rule: Make it clear that your concentration block is unavailble time and should only be interrupted with matters of extreme importance. For example, establish an agreement like this, “If your hair is on fire, you can always come in. Anything less than that, please come back during my available times.”
- Telephone & email interruptions can be real time-stealers. Use voicemail in order to ensure you are focusing on what’s important and schedule time to return all calls later. Schedule blocks of time to respond to non-emergency emails.
- Learn to say “no”: When it’s done politely, most interrupters will accept the fact that they don’t need to interrupt you. For example, you might say “I’m on a tight deadline for an important project right now, can we discuss this at 3:00pm today? I’m sorry, but I’m not in a position to help at the moment.
Delegation with your supervisor
- Here is everything that I have on my plate right now.
- This is how much time I think I need to complete it.
- I’m concerned about doing a quality job on everything I’m working on right now.
- Can you help me realign priorities?
- Can we push one of these deadlines?
- can you help me taking this task off of my plate?
- Be ready to problem solve. Come in with solutions already in mind.
Delegation with a peer:
- Here is everything that we need to get done for this project.
- This is how much time I think we need to complete it.
- I’m concerned about getting everything done by our deadline.
- Can you help me by taking on this specific task and complete it by this specific time?
- If so, I’ll be clear to help you
Delegation to your staff:
- Begin with the end in mind - clearly specify the desired results.
- Identify constraints and boundaries. Where are the lines of authority, responsibility and accountability?
- Match the amount of responsibility with the amount of authroity. Understand that you can delgate some responsibility, but you cant delegate ultimate accountabiliy.
- Focus on results. Concern yourself with what is accomplished rather than detailing how the work should be done.
- Build motivation & commitment. Provide recognition where deserved.
A word about managing up…
- It’s easy to say you have no control over interruptions from your boss, or shifting priorities in the organization. There is some truth in that, and it’s the reality of almost any job.
- It’s okay to ask for help and insight into managing your workload
Take breaks if anything is longer than 90 minutes
People who are interrupted take 50% longer to complete a task & make 50% more mistakes. - John Medina, “Brain Rules”
- plan next day
- find cadence and take a break in between
- block off time
rsync is something I always use, but always end up looking up the arguments I want to use. Here are my favorites:
- -v / —verbose
- -a / —archive (-rlptgoD)
- -r / —recursive
- -l / —links (copy symlinks as symlinks)
- —copy-unsafe-links (copy hard files from symlinks that point outside the source tree)
- -p / —perms preserve permissions
- -g / —group presreve group
- -o / —owner preserve owner
- —devices copy devices
- —specials copy special files
- -t / —times preserve modification times
- -u / — update (skip files that are newer on reciever)
- -H / —hard-links (preserve hard links)
- -E / —executability (preserve executability)
- -A / —acls preserve ACLs
- -X / —xattrs preserve extended attributes (some systems will give an error about operation not permitted with this argument)
- -S / —sparse handle sparse files efficiently
- —partial keep partially transfered files
- -F filter rules on per directory basis in .rsync-filter files
- -T / —temp-dir=DIR (temporary directory for files, ramdisk?)
Recently I was decomisioning a machine and I went with:
rysnc -vrlpDtuHEASF —temp-dir /mnt/ramdisk —partial —stats —progress —copy-unsave-links src dest
Since I was on a local network, I turned off compression on ssh
Americans are going through tough economic times, software patents are stifling business and more importantly innovation. Please take a few minutes to sign the petition at the @whitehouse website to cease issuing software patents. It’s 5 trivial fields and an email verification step to create an account. Please sign the petition now http://1.usa.gov/o52DNd .
Mark Cuban, the Venture Capitolist, Entrepreneur and owner of the Mavericks, has an excellent post on his blog that goes into much more detail why.
An interesting article about one families triumph in cultural immersion
Some notes on Learning Agility Training I happen to be going through right now:
- A key indicator of high potential
- A comfort level with new, different, and challenging situations
- A willingness & ability to learn and develop from “lessons of experience”
- Studies repeatedly show the ability to learn from experience differentiates successful executives
- Essentially, it is an ability to figure out what to do when you don’t know what to do
I wanted to jot down my thoughts regarding your K-6 computer use.
It’s a good idea for children and their parents to have computers available to them. Ideally this is at home, but a library on or off campus could suffice. In the worst case scenario a friend computer.
I also think it’s a good idea for teacher to challenge students into providing presentations, media, and other creative communication tools and projects. Perhaps even requiring it.
However I reject the idea that classroom instruciton time should be used for the purpose of tutoring children into using any particular software, any particular operating system, or any particular device. I have four reasons for this.
The first reason is that there already isn’t sufficient instruction time.
The second reason is that children have many opportunities to pick up these skills as time goes on
Third is that the particular software will drastically change by the time it’s truly necessary.
Fourth, and most importantly, fundamentals are far more important. Things like Logic, decomposing complex problems into simple steps, abstract thinking, algortihms, reasoning and critical thinking are far more important. These can be applied to all forms of software and processes. Everything from understanding a poem, to taking on a challenging task. an interesting proverb, that I can paraphrase, comes to mind:
Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.
- Chinese Proverb