IBM Report: Capitalizing on Complexity

Posted on by Brady Mick

Insights from the Global Chief Executive Officer Study Do you occasionally sit back and wonder why work is so complicated?  What happened to our worlds of work when we knew almost every day how to attack and beat back the infamous “to-do” list?  A good day ten years ago was when I finished all but a couple of the items on my list, and was charged up to refresh and hit it again the next day.  Those days are gone.  Work and life priorities are in constant change.  Reaction times require continuous immediacy.  Requirements simply present themselves as “complex”, sometimes bordering on the edge of chaotic. If Uncertainty was the word for 2010, then Complexity is the word for 2011. Complexity is defined as: “the varied relationship of multiple elements that are relative and changing over time.”  The nature of the elements, the relationship of the…

The Company vs. The Individual

Posted on by Brady Mick

When I began working at my current company in 2005, I was completely unprepared for the cultural shift I was about to experience.  My ideals and pursuit for professional results were an apparent match for those of the company, but my preferred behaviors and approach to work were very out of sync with “the company”.  The resulting tension that was created was palpable.  I listened with great interest to the stories about the founding fathers of the company.  I learned about the days when, if you needed a refill on a lead holding pencil for drafting, you had to go in front of the owner, Cyrus Baxter, and ask for the new stick of lead.  I found great insight in the story our current CEO told about when he was 14 years old cutting the grass at the office, and Cy came down from his second story office and chewed…

What Community College Leaders Think…(Part 2)

Posted on by Tom Sens

I last wrote about the perception of community colleges and the opportunities to not only change that perception but to effectively change the reality. Another common theme I heard when meeting with the many community colleges was strategic partnerships Strategic Partnerships: The question of future funding from the state for community colleges is a cause for great concern; “it’s not whether the cut from the state will or won’t take place, it’s how deep will it be and how will we deal with it.” How then will community colleges meet the needs of a growing student body with shrinking state dollars? With state funding in doubt and pressure to keep tuition costs competitive, partnerships with private industry within the community along with philanthropic support is seen as the way of the future.  At the White House Community College Summit, held on October 5, 2010, private corporations were strongly encouraged to…

What Community College Leaders Think...

Posted on by Tom Sens

Over the summer of 2010, I had the wonderful opportunity to interview community college presidents, provosts, vice presidents and deans, to better understand the challenges and opportunities that these institutions face as they navigate through these historically tough economic times. Over the course of the next several blogs, I’ll share some common themes that came up consistently during these enlightening conversations:  Changing Perception: Community colleges have long been in the shadow of their 4 year counterparts. In President Obama’s words, expressed during a speech at the October, 2010 White House Summit on Community Colleges, “they are the unsung heroes of our American education system.” There is a tremendous opportunity in this pivotal time in the history of these colleges to change their perception from being a lesser educational experience to being the college of choice and a first step in a high quality education. Community colleges are literally reinventing themselves by developing higher…