Career Opportunities

Helping to build the career you deserve!

A weekly ComputorEdge Column and twice-weekly podcast by Douglas E. Welch
Other WelchWrite Blogs: A Gardener's Notebook -- My Word with Douglas E. Welch -- TechnologyIQ -- Careers in Podcasting

Home -- Search -- Forums
Douglas' Events, Appearances and Seminar Calendar

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A reputation for the big picture...and the small

Career Opportunities podcast logoFlexibility is the key to any career. Sometimes you will need to be thinking about the short term repercussions of your actions and sometimes the long term. Depending on the situation, you will need to clearly understand the "big picture" or the small. That said, many of us consistently focus on one over the other. These prejudices can limit our effectiveness by instantly branding us as a particular "type". Those around us begin to discount our opinion because they believe that they already know our response is biased in one direction. Don't fall victim to the big picture/small picture trap. Expand your thinking to allow for the best thoughts at the best time. Build a reputation for understanding both, so your co-workers and your managers will know you can see the whole picture and not just a fraction.

Next Friday: October 5, 2007: A Reputation for Balancing Work and Self

Join me on these networks:

Douglas on MySpace | Douglas on Facebook | Douglas on LinkedIn

Support Career Opportunities:

iTunes Review | Career-Op Forums | | Podcast Alley | Reader/Listener Line @ 818-804-5049

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

When is an unconference not an unconference?

Some of my best experiences this year have been the "unconferences" I have attended. These ad hoc events allow for a sense of spontaneity and serendipity that regular life often denies us. Unfortunately, I am starting to see a disturbing trend that threatens to suck the life out of unconferences -- too much control.

Organizers of unconferences need to control where and when the conference will occur, sponsors for meals and other perks, bathrooms, etc., but more frequently now, I see organizers pre-scheduling the events more and more tightly. Instead of the typical "sign up wall" of a more open unconference, I am seeing schedules completely decided long before the event occurs.

Now, I am not adverse to having a few "ringers" brought in to give the conference a backbone of great content, but when everything is planned out in advance, I think spontaneity and serendipity suffer. Unconferences were created explicitly to move beyond the stultifying effect of traditional conferences where the same voices are always heard. Unconferences, in my mind, are specifically designed to stir up the long tail and let some new, intriguing ideas be heard.

Of course, I think the biggest cause of these changes in the unconference world is fear. Organizers are afraid that the conference won't come together, that it will be boring or unproductive. They lack trust in the attendees to produce a conference that meets their own needs. In my experience here in Los Angeles, though, I find that it all works out well in the end. I find it something akin to the magic that occurs opening night of a play or musical. ( My degree is in theater, so I have some experience with this.) Whatever troubles might have plagued the show during rehearsals suddenly melt away and it suddenly comes together.

Organizers need to think deeply about how much control they are exercising over an unconference schedule. They must remember that it isn't about them and the power they exert, but the power of the attendees as a whole that make a successful unconference. I hope that, in the future, we can return to the spirit of the unconference and place the reins for its success or failure firmly in the hands of the attendees, where it belongs.

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Elsewhere Online: Work: Keep a File of Your Accomplishments

This article from, provides some great advice, much like I wrote about in my column, A Little Recognition, (June 1998) and Make Your Resume A Blog ( Jan 5, 2007). The notes described in the article are just the type of thing you should be adding to your career portfolio, just as an artist adds there work and show reviews to theirs.

Work: Keep a File of Your Accomplishments

If you're doing a good job at work, keep a record. Office productivity site Slacker Manager suggests keeping a "yay-me!" file:
The basic idea is simple: you just keep a file of good stuff you do. When you figure out some trick new process that saves hours per week, you make a note about (don't forget to datestamp it) and drop it in the yay-me file.
There are two benefits of this practice: first, you can always give yourself a pat on the back when you're feeling down. Second, you're storing up good karma for your annual (or otherwise) evaluation. Do you have a "yay-me" file? Share how you've used it in the comments. Yay-me! file [Slacker Manager]

(Via Lifehacker.)

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Thursday, September 20, 2007

A Reputation for Clarity - Celebrating our 3rd Anniversary!

Career Opportunities podcast logoMany a project and sometimes even an entire company has failed due to one, small, yet amazingly important trait -- clarity. When companies can't make a clear case for their product or service over another -- or when management can't communicate its vision and desires to staff -- or when you can't tell your loved ones what is really important to you -- it becomes terribly clear how important clarity is to all aspects of your life. You can be the smartest, quickest, most skilled worker in the world, but if you can't communicate clearly to those around you, your chances for success are critically hampered.

Next Friday: September 28, 2007: A Reputation for the Big Picture...and the small

Join me on these networks:

Douglas on MySpace | Douglas on Facebook | Douglas on LinkedIn

Support Career Opportunities:

iTunes Review | Career-Op Forums | | Podcast Alley | Reader/Listener Line @ 818-804-5049

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Saturday, September 15, 2007

A Reputation for Helpfulness - Celebrating our 3rd Anniversary!

Career Opportunities podcast logoEveryone wants to be helpful, right? Surely, there can't be people out there who don't understand the need to be helpful and how it binds society together. Then you find yourself running for an elevator and someone refuses to hold the door. Perhaps you're trying to accomplish something at your local bank or government agency and you are faced with someone who, it seems, does everything in their power to not be helpful. We see a breakdown in the sense of helpfulness everyday, which is why you need to focus on this reputation intensely, despite how commonsense it might first appear.

Next Friday: September 21, 2007: A Reputation for Clarity

Join me on these networks:

Douglas on MySpace | Douglas on Facebook | Douglas on LinkedIn

Support Career Opportunities:

iTunes Review | Career-Op Forums | | Podcast Alley | Reader/Listener Line @ 818-804-5049

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Saturday, September 08, 2007

DrupalCampLA sessions

drupalcampla 008
Originally uploaded by dewelch
I am at DrupalCampLA in Beverly Hills today, learning about this content management system with all my LA-based technical peeps.

More photos on Flickr. Click the picture. More photos throughout they day.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Lunch 2.0 in Santa Monica - They're hiring!

Lunch 2.0 - Job Openings
Originally uploaded by dewelch
I spent lunch today doing Lunch 2.0 down at the Santa Monica offices of ThisNext, our hosts. I met a lot of great people, working on a lot of great projects. In fact, it seemed a lot of people, including ThisNext were looking for staff. You can click through on this shot of their office white board to see who they are looking for and who to contact with your info.

I look forward to more Lunch 2.0 meetings in the future.

More photos:

Lunch 2.0 - Gordon Gould (?) CEO of ThisNext, our hosts Lunch 2.0 - Yum, Cupcakes

Thursday, September 06, 2007

A Reputation for Trustworthiness - Our 3rd Anniversary is approaching!

Career Opportunities podcast logoIf a hierarchy exists to the reputations I have highlighted so far this month, trustworthiness would surely be near, if not at, the top of the list. Trust, as I have written in Career Opportunities before, is one of the most critical elements of any successful career. Without trust it is nearly impossible to achieve anything. You must trust others, they must trust you and you all must trust yourselves in order for everyone to thrive.

Next Friday: September 7, 2007: A Reputation for Trustworthiness

Join me on these networks:

Douglas on MySpace | Douglas on Facebook | Douglas on LinkedIn

Support Career Opportunities:

iTunes Review | Career-Op Forums | | Podcast Alley | Reader/Listener Line @ 818-804-5049

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Career Opportunities 3rd Anniversary - September 24, 2007

Career Opportunities 3rd Anniversary LogoIt may seem impossible, but in some ways I can't believe Career-Op is almost 3 years old and in others I can't believe it has only been 3 years. So much has happened in podcasting over these years that it seems like it has been around for much, much longer.

In some ways, I am sensing that podcasting is starting to move into its next phase a just a part of the entire new media space which includes YouTube and other video sites, Internet TV like Joost and even social media sites like Facebook, MySpace and others. I think that in a few years, we won't really care where our entertainment comes from, only that it is available.

Of course, one of the major reasons Career Opportunities has survived this long is you, the readers and listeners of the podcast. Your letters and other forms of support are greatly appreciated. I truly believe in "Helping to Build the Career You Deserve" and I hope that you find Career-Op more useful with each passing week.

I am looking for some suitable way to celebrate this 3rd birthday, both online and in real life. Would you be interested in a live, video chat where you can ask questions and share your career stories (and maybe how Career-Op has helped)?

How about a "board meeting" where you can act as my advisory board and let me know what you want to see in Career-Op in the coming years?

I am open to any ideas you might have. I know that personally I will probably have one night where I go out and raise a glass of some beverage in memory to the past 3 years.

Finally, if you find Career-Op useful, and would like to see it continue, please consider a show of support.

While the costs of hosting and producing Career Opportunities has dropped over the years, the amount of time I am spending writing and producing the show has increased. A donation through PayPal is always a welcome message in my Inbox. Not only does it let me know I am offering an important service, it goes directly towards continuing and improving the show.

You can also show your support by sharing Career Opportunities with those around you. Let them know what you find useful about Career Opportunities and how it can help them with their career. You can also share this message using these methods.

iTunes Review | Career-Op Forums | | Podcast Alley | Reader/Listener Line @ 818-804-5049

If you are a member of social network sites, join me on these networks:

Douglas on MySpace | Douglas on Facebook | Douglas on LinkedIn

Let me know you are a reader or listened in your invite and I will add you immediately.

Thanks for the last 3 years! I look forward to many, many more!


Receive each new episode automatically

Subscribe or

Subscribe with

See more in the WelchWrite Store!

Live Web Cam

Please complete our audience survey. It helps us learn more about you and what you like most about this podcast.

Join in the Career Discussion!

FiT Consolidated Forums

Feedback, questions and discussion for all Friends in Tech shows


Column Archives

Career-Op 2003 Career-Op 2002 Career-Op 2001 Career-Op 2000 Career-Op 1997-1999

Blog Archives

May 2004
October 2004
January 2005
February 2005
March 2005
April 2005
May 2005
June 2005
July 2005
August 2005
September 2005
October 2005
November 2005
December 2005
January 2006
February 2006
March 2006
April 2006
May 2006
June 2006
July 2006
August 2006
September 2006
October 2006
November 2006
December 2006
January 2007
February 2007
March 2007
April 2007
May 2007
June 2007
July 2007
August 2007
September 2007
October 2007
November 2007
December 2007
March 2008