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  • Entrepreneurs can change the world

    Posted on May 20th, 2009 Nelson Bodnarchuk No comments

    I recently had a friend tell me that in a recession war or entrepreneurship will turn things around. Here’s hoping that we choose entrepreneurship over destruction and dispair. Here’s a great short video that another friend forwarded to me this morning, it’s a great message, not to mention the motivation that you’ll suddenly have after watching it. Enjoy!

    In the words of one of my old hockey coaches, “Don’t wait for the good bounces. Make the good bounces happen.”

  • Leading Strategic Change

    Posted on May 15th, 2009 Nelson Bodnarchuk No comments

    Here are a few resources that I found very useful when leading projects that involve a great deal of change management, of the people variety, which is about 80% of all the projects that I’ve ever worked on.

    Leading-Strategic-Change is an excellent e-book that I was given during my Six Sigm Black Belt Training from one of my favourite mentors Norm Rudd, who in my opinion is the Six Sigma equivalent to a Rockstar. If you don’t get what I’m talking about check out this intel commercial.

    The book takes the reader through the three “brain barriers” that teams must overcome to accomplish a task successfully, as well as the solutions to help teams break through the brain barriers. With out giving too muchaway, here are the three brain barriers that the book outlines:

    • Failure to See
    • Failure to Move
    • Failure to Finish

    Also, if you’re really interested in this kind of thing, check out the Change Management Blog. It’s an interesting read.

  • Earth Day Should be Every Day of the Year

    Posted on April 30th, 2009 Nelson Bodnarchuk No comments

    Go Green everyday of the year, save green every day of the year.

    That’s my goal. To be economical and environmental about how I spend my money. I think that should also be a businesses goal as well, and not just because of the current global economic state.

    The state of the economy today demands that people be smarter about how they spend their money, but why are we so reactive versus proactive? It seems we always wait until the last quarter to make the big play. Here’s a list of “Green Savers” that would positively impact the environment, as well as the bottom line if companies started implementing the Virtual Office on a larger scale:

    • Reducing turnover and training costs;
    • Decreasing office space construction and maintenance;
    • Lowering energy bills due to non-industrial office equipment;
    • Shortening project turnaround time – People in different time zones can work around the clock.

    The ACI estimates that over the next decade,
    greenhouse gas emissions created by full-time commuters could be
    reduced by more than five million tons by professionals freelancing
    from their homes.

    The following would be the benefits we’d all start to experience:

    1. Reduced gasoline consumption;
    2. Decreased energy used in building roads;
    3. Cutting down on energy to build, heat, cool and operate large office buildings;
    4. Minimizing run-off and disturbance in natural habitats; and
    5. Diminishing pollutants and greenhouse emissions.

    There’s definately more spin off benefits to this idea than listed here, if you’ve got any let me know.

  • IT Efficiency + Your Business = Beat the Competition

    Posted on April 14th, 2009 Nelson Bodnarchuk No comments

    To keep pace in an increasingly competitive world, a business needs to run as efficiently as possible. Efficiency is even more important for a small or medium-sized business, because their resources are limited. I say this from experience serving in both in a large, global, mining company and a small IT start-up.

    Here are 10 tips that I’ve summarized from the IT Business Edge, sans the sales pitch from Cisco at the end, for using network technology to help a business work more efficiently, cut costs, improve customer satisfaction, and ultimately stay ahead of the competition.

    Quoted from a free online White Paper by IT Business Edge titled 10 tips to make your business more efficient.

    1. Give employees secure, consistent access to information. You have an advantage over larger competitors because you can react quickly to business changes. But you can quickly lose this edge if your company network is frequently down, sluggish, or unsecured. A secure, reliable network based on intelligent routers and switches lets your employees access the information and tools they need to keep ahead of competitors.
    2. Deliver anytime, anywhere access to employees on the go. To stay productive on the move, your employees need to be able to reach the people and information they need—anywhere, anytime. With tools like virtual private networks (VPNs), your employees can work outside the office and still enjoy safe access to the business network.
    3. Create effective business processes with partners. Some large companies make efficient, secure business processes a prerequisite for doing business with them. To meet the business needs of your partners, you need a secure, reliable network.
    4. Make it easy to work together. Smooth collaboration between employees, partners, suppliers, and customers is a sure-fire way to boost efficiency while also reducing costs. An intelligent network lets your business take advantage of interactive calendaring, videoconferencing, unified communications, and other technologies for easy collaboration.
    5. Enable employees to take their phone systems wherever they go. Missed calls create project delays, wasted opportunities, and lost revenues. With a networked voice and data solution, your employees can have one phone number that rings simultaneously on multiple devices, so customers reach the right person the first time. Your staff can access all their communications from anywhere, checking for e-mail, voicemail, and faxes from just one inbox.
    6. Streamline customer communications. Delivering fast, knowledgeable service is the best way to keep customers satisfied. Linking your network phone system to a customer relationship management (CRM) solution is a great way to enhance customer communications. When a customer calls, a pop-up window with their records appears on an employee’s IP phone screen, computer screen, or both.
    7. Reduce unproductive travel time. All too often, time spent on the road is time lost. A networked phone solution that offers video calls and Web conferencing can help reduce the time and expense of traveling to offsite meetings and training sessions. Instead of spending time traveling, you can use the time to get work done with technology.
    8. Employ a managed service provider. Is managing a network the best use of your employees’ time? In some situations, it is advantageous to hire a managed service provider for network administration. Working with a managed service provider can free your IT staff to focus on other IT tasks and use their time more effectively.
    9. Improve employee satisfaction. Aging phone systems and slow networks can frustrate your employees and annoy your customers. In some cases, an employee might become burned out and decide to move on. To help ensure that employees are productive and satisfied, your business needs a secure, reliable, and fast network.
    10. Develop a long-term technology plan. The process of replacing obsolete hardware can interrupt your employees and bring the office to a standstill. You can minimize such disruptions by carefully determining short- and long-term business objectives and working with your network vendor to deploy technology that matches them.

    I personally like this list as a starting point when planing how to improve things from an IT perspective. However, take it with a grain of salt and consider the source if and when planning your own solution as there are several paths one can take to arrive at the desired outcome.