When obsession poisons your point of view

I was recently reminded of a conversation that happened when I moved from end user support to an architect. That conversation happened very candidly between myself and my husband. Could I let it go and make the transition from day to day support to potential leader of people and little to no interaction with the users?

After having a thought provoking conversation over Valentine’s dinner and my struggles with my current project. I realized that I am a social creature. I love the interaction of people. I am not an engineer that can sit by myself in a room. I crave the interaction. I need it.

So I have started my day filled with questions. Is this the job I want to do? Am I able to temper my passion for mobility to further the future of my company constructively?  Can I make the transition? Can I work effectively with a team of people just like me and not feel like a brat child trying to get my way all the time.

As I struggle with myself I am finding more questions than answers. How can I be so self centered and egotistical as to not take a minute to think of those around me and the hell Im putting them through as I struggle with my identity. What does this say about any potential that I have for moving up in the world. I had an issue with a leader who couldn’t let go of the engineering tasks. I kept asking the question why he even hired me if he kept on insisting on doing it his way. It really got to me. Now I realize that Im like him in some ways.

They say with great leadership comes great responsibility. Well right now I am acting exactly like a displaced admin support person that I claim to have grown out of. Not like the architect that I am.

So my peers, I am working through this. If you have anything that has worked for you throw it out here.

Change is inevitable its what we do when presented with it that shapes our future.


What I really learned at MacIT

So this week I had the pleasure of visiting San Francisco to attend MacIT. I had some great sessions. I have attended some not so great sessions.
The biggest thing I have taken away is the need for full disclosure. I am a realist, I never take a look at a product and just take people at their word. It is becoming more and more apparent that in the Mac/iOS space, that individuals, admins, and support personal just eat up this information without a dose of skepticism. All too often, everything that is being presented is from a one sided small view.
In our business, whether we are supporting a 10 person team, a school district of 100k students, or a large corporation, to listen to someone talk about a $20 server that can manage all of your devices is disturbing. I realize that not all ideas/solutions fit every need, and given our diverse interests and backgrounds its important to ensure that material being presented is a useable solution for your situation and objectives as well as your constraints.. As an enterprise decision maker am I going to go out to my Mac base and say: “Hey use Logmein” and punch holes in my firewall. No I am not.
I have heard a couple of speakers refer to BYOD as Bring Your Own Disaster. BYOD does not need to be a disaster, but there does need to be governance. Comprehensive policy/end user agreements need to be created that protect the user and the company/organization/school. Consumer solutions may paint a lower cost, faster, simpler solution at first glance, but few have these sort of enterprise grade capabilities that are critical to these entities.

All in all remember these mantras:

  • You get what you pay for. ($20 for server and mobile device management. This solution requires hours of administration and customization. In the end it is still a small market solution that may not do everything you need. Considering you still need iTunes and the iPCU (iPhone configuration utility. More software to do one job.)
  • One size solution does not fit all. (Your organization/company/school is unique. Just because it works for one place doesn’t mean it will work for you.)
  •  A sucker is born every minute. (Listen, learn, ask questions, and research. Never take anything at face value. Most speakers are here to hawk their products and solutions. See the first mantra.)

Just remember, when you attend a conference take notes, listen, learn the methods but use it to your advantage and create your own success story. When you network (networking is what makes us stronger), talk about your methods and your practices and get feedback. Listen to a peer’s success story and take a mental note of their trials and tribulations but discard the vendor sales pitch. Listen to the criticism of other products and solutions and take into account the whys for it failing them, what they learned and what they did different a second time. By using a little ‘Sherlock Holmes’ method of deduction you can write the next great success story.