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Career Simplicity--Paring Down to the Essentials

We live in a complicated world, getting more complex all the time. I've come to believe that our best--really our ONLY--strategy for dealing with this on an individual basis is to look for career simplicity. How do we pare things down to the essentials so that we're able to focus and build on what really counts? Beth Kanter had a great blog post a few years ago about the need... Read more →

Connecting the Dots

A few years ago I posted about one of my favorite Steve Jobs' stories: Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn't have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned... Read more →

Are You Prepared for the "Internet of Things"?

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately about the fundamental shifts in our economy that are going on and how they impact our career and professional development. Monday I asked if you were ready to treat yourself as a start-up. Today I'm wondering how the Internet of Things may start changing our work. What is the "Internet of Things"? When real-word objects--buses, water mains, cows--are connected to the Internet,... Read more →

How Prepared Are You For "The Start-Up of You"?

Tom Friedman had an interesting op/ed piece in the New York Times last week entitled, "The Start-Up of You," in which he makes the very compelling argument that one of the fundamental changes we are experiencing in work today is the need for employees to think like entrepreneurs: Whatever you may be thinking when you apply for a job today, you can be sure the employer is asking this: Can... Read more →

A 30-Day Experiment: Appreciating Team Members

As I look at my own professional development and my ability to implement the things I'm "learning" all the time, it occurs to me how often I learn about some new skill or idea and then end up doing nothing with it. This is a problem for the learners I work with, too. It's that pesky transfer of training that we all struggle with. With that in mind, I've begun... Read more →

Lynda Gratton, author of The Shift: The Future of Work is Already Here, has an excellent post that summarizes the key points of her new book and outlines the 10 things you can do to future proof your career: Know the trends that are shaping work and careers. Learn to be virtual. Search for the valuable skills. Become a Master. Be prepared to strike out on your own. Find your... Read more →

When Do You Pay Attention to Your Professional Development?

As I'm thinking about positive professional development and working on my upcoming Positive Professional Development Day camps, I'm wondering when people tend to think about their careers and their ongoing professional development. Anecdotally, it seems that most people think about it because of external factors, like needing PD to maintain a professional certification or because a boss suggests it, but I want to check my assumptions, so. . . Take... Read more →

Is Morris Lessmore the Future of Elearning?

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore iPad App Trailer from Moonbot Studios on Vimeo. Ex-Pixar Designer William Joyce has created a stunning children's book/i-Pad app that should be a wake-up call to those of us who work with adult learners, especially in designing/developing e-learning. Based on the video above, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore is a stunning piece of work that draws you into a... Read more →

Over the weekend I ran across an interesting report in The Atlantic from the for-profit University of Phoenix. It looks at what they consider to be the six major drivers of change and the skills that will be necessary to thrive in this environment. Six Drivers of Change According to the report, there are six drivers of change: Extreme Longevity--an aging population worldwide. Rise of Smart Machines and Systems--workplace automation... Read more →

A few years ago, I wrote a post about Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck's research into fixed vs. growth mindsets, in which I briefly explored the implications of her research. As part of my own personal professional development, I've been reading more books, so finally got around to reading Dweck's excellent Mindset: The New Psychology of Success and can see even greater implications for the positive professional development I've been thinking... Read more →