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AIM IT Leadership Academy: Graduation

 

About 4:00 p.m. after the AIM IT Leadership Academy: Reality Based Leadership Session every was escorted to the atrium where we will meet any guests that will be coming. My accountability buddy along with other teammates from Farm Credit Services of America were down there waiting.  There were free drinks and light appetizers from Upstream Brewery served.

At about 4:20 p.m. everyone was ushered into the auditorium for a graduation ceremony.

Each member of the graduation class was called up one at time to say a few words. I was given a triangle plaque with my name and graduation class.

I spoke about being thankful for the opportunity to be in the program. I also mentioned how the interacting with different members in the capstone cup was eye opening to how other companies work.

 

 

AIM IT Leadership Academy: Reality Based Leadership Session

On Friday May 3rd the last AIM IT Leadership session was held at Omaha Public Power District located at in downtown Omaha  at the Energy Plaza at 444 So. 16th Street.

This session was on Reality-Based Leadership.  This is based on research and book by Cy Wakeman. This is a local speaker who wrote a book on the topic.

The principles of Reality-Based Leadership include:

  • Refusing to argue with reality
  • Valuing action over opinion
  • Leading first, managing second
  • Bulletproofing employees so that they can succeed, regardless of the circumstances
  • Working to be happy rather than to be right

Agenda

The speaker for the day taking us through the course was Alex Dorr.

 

He started off with saying “I want to Thank you for being here and the opportunity to speak”

Here is a link to my notes along with the power point.

I can say this was my favorite speaker and session.

These were my three actions I took from the course today.

  1. Work on my personal happiness.
  2. Help others be accountable.
  3. Finding what great looks like at work.

2019 Spring UNO MIS Capstone Dinner

On Monday, April 29th, I attend final presentation dinner for the University of Nebraska-Omaha Management of Information Systems Capstone Team EmpowerU students.

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I was first contacted by a UNO Student who saw a class room presentation and attended Technology Works Here 2018 about fundraising.

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After back and forth emails. I donated $100.00 to the presentation dinner.

I then meet at the 2019 Spring Career Fair who had the empoweru project on their resume.  This was a good conversation piece for the students.

Event

The event began at 5:30pm in PKI room 158. There was a buffet style dinner.

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The table I sat with was for professors who sponsored the project.  Dr. Royce who I have built a good relationship was one of those professors. The tables had a program on it which contained the FCSAmerica logo along with other sponsors.

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Presentation

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The presentation kicked off about 6:00 p.m. with a presentation of the Team and project.

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As individuals and a group they told their story of working on their capstone project. Their deliverable was great, but how they got there was even better. The students showed how as a team transparency, accountability, and teamwork makes great software.  I know, I walked away knowing this was money well spent and a stronger relationship with the university.

A few days later I got a thank you card in the mail.

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AIM IT Leadership Academy: Trends in Business & IT/Executive Perspectives

This months  AIM IT Leadership Academy session was at Kiewit Business Center on Trends in Business and IT/Executive Perspectives.

The three goals of this session were:

  • Learn how to create a concise message to sell an idea to a group of executives in a limited window.
  • Practice Team work and presentation skills.
  • Achieve a clearer understanding of a executive’s point of view on an organization.

Presentation

I was under the impression this day was about what was called our capstone presentation. My group consisted of a employee of Team Software and Werner Enterprises. We meet once Team Software, a few times at Farm Credit Services of America and the other times virtually through Zoom. I was extremely happy with the effort by the group and everyone being a good team member.

Our presentation was “Emotional Intelligence in Agile Teams“. Our hook for this presentation was this:

Our company can increase effective communication, engagement, and empower our employees through Emotional Intelligence education and the formation of teams based on complimentary thinking preferences.

We had about 8 to 12 minutes to give the presentation. The presentation was on a actually stage with a podium. The other members of the AIM leadership group were at their tables. There were three volunteers from different organizations who acted as our supervisors.

Feedback:

  • Words matter never use “We hope this will work because” instead say “We are confident this will work because”
  • Too much detail on Agile and Emotional Intelligence.
  • Measuring success over a longer period of time.

Executive Breakouts

We had three breakout session with leaders in executive roles from different companies.

EVP Operations Business Process

  • People vs Technology
  • You don’t know it all
  • Invigorating Culture
  • Listening and Framing
  • Develop Strong Team Interpersonal Skills

Field CTO

  • 12 steps to native cloud development
  • Strategy of a Team
  • Technical Management in leadership
  • Happy people are productive

SVP/CIO

  • We are in the business of IT. IT = Business
  • Measure Critical parts of business
  • It is OK to say I don’t know, Let me go find out.
  • Data centric based on information.

My three take a ways from this session were:

  1. Before presenting always ask about the environment.
  2. There is a breadth of Technologies to be educated on.
  3. The art of words when presenting.

I am excited that next months session is the last. I am hopefully graduating.

2019 Spring UNO Capstone Cup Finals

On Friday, April 12th from 12 PM – 3:30 PM was the University of Nebraska-Omaha College of Business Administration Capstone Cup Spring 2019 finals.

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This was my second time being a on the judges panel for the Finals.  This is one of the perks of sponsoring the Capstone Cup is FCSAmerica has a judges seat reserved for each round of the competition. I arrived about 12:45 p.m. to do a debriefing with the other judges in a class room. We were told for the final round of competition, the final four teams will be developing recommendations for Roku Inc. Once again, each team’s job is to identify a strategic issue facing Roku, conduct strategic analyses and come up with a strategic solution/recommendation that is driven by their analysis. The judges would be the ones deciding the overall winner.

The day of the finals I posted on social media a video that was created to show FCSAmerica’s support for the competition.

Presentations

About 1:00 p.m. the judges were taken to the auditorium which is a two-story, 186-seat capacity which was standing room only. I found out that actually over 200 RSVPS were sent in for the event. The Judges are placed in the front row. A wide variety of Omaha Companies sponsor the event.

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The Associate Dean Harlandof of the CBA says a few words while revolving display of Agenda, sponsors and thank you to judges appear.

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Teams presented every twenty-five minutes. Each group has 12 minutes to present, with warning times given for 5 minutes, 2 minutes, and 1 minute. This is followed by 5-10 minutes of Q&A with the judges.  The level of the presentations were good. Two of the teams presenting I heard in round 1 and round 2. At about 2:35 the Judges will leave and deliberate.

The format for the next hour was different then previous Capstone Cup finals. The students that have not made the final round have been asked to address the final case in a Poster Session Competition where guests can vote on their favorite case recommendations.  I made sure to vote the students I met from Innovation Works Here.

During the deliberation. The organizing professors asked if a two judges would be willing to announce the winners. I raised my hand to volunteer. I was given runner up. I also had to determine what to say. I kept in simple.

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Before the winning team was announced. The professors gave each judge a thank you plaque.

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After the winning team was announced. I stayed and networked with the students and faculty.

A few days later I received a thank you note.

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I believe having someone at FCSAmerica on the  judges panel is a good thing. I enjoyed the overall experience as a judge.  I am sold that supporting this event for the future is money well spent.

2019 Spring UNO Financial Management Association

In mid March I was sent a email from Laura Sansoni, Director, CBA Career Development to be part of a panel for a University of Nebraska-Omaha College of Business Admiration student group Financial Management Association (FMA). Like most request I would be happy to sit on the panel if chosen.

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Then sometime in April I received a email from Ray LeBlanc who the faculty advisor for UNO’s Financial Management Association confirming that I will be on the April 9th panel. I did offer to sponsor any snacks or treats which the professor let me know that was covered.  I also offered to get some gift cards to raffle away to everyone that attends which he was fine with.

Panel

The student meeting was held on Tuesday, April 9, from 4:30-5:30 in Mammel Hall. When I arrived to the room there was about 25 to 30 students. There was food catered in from Hy-Vee.  So I understand how that was covered. I asked the advisor to make a sign up sheet so I know who to give the gift card to.

What I realized in a hurry that this originally was supposed to be a Human Resources Panel. There were representatives from National Indemnity Company, KPMG, and Valmont. Everyone I recognized was someone who I saw at a previous UNO career fair.

Questions

This was the sample questions for each panel member to answer, followed by open Q & A from our students. Initial questions include:

– An introduction of panel members and their company, providing a brief overview of their professional/educational background.

– Discussion of entry level jobs for students graduating with finance degrees at their firm.

– Importance of internships (and availability, if applicable).

– What are the most important factors you look at when sifting through applications and interviewing for internships/entry-level positions?

– Discussion of the culture at their firm. (This is an area I feel that most students do not take seriously enough out of college)

– Describe your most successful new hires. What characteristics do they exhibit? (and the opposite as well… What should you NOT do once you’re on the job?)

– Any other tips/advice for current students that are looking to enter the workforce?

After the panel members address the issues above, there is usually about 20 minutes remaining for more open Q & A from students, which may be directed at a specific panel member or all panel members.

My Responses

This was my notes from the various conversations going back and forth between the students and panel.

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At the end a random person was selected which I gave a $10 dollar Applebee’s gift card to.

A few days latter I received a thank you note from the student leadership.

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Overall this was a good experience for myself. I built a relationship with another student organization for future appearance’s.

2019 Spring UNO ACM Hackathon

On April 4th I had done a presentation at the ACM Student Group.  As I was leaving the student officers asked if I was able to be a judge for the upcoming HACKUNO event the group was doing the upcoming weekend. I did not want to commit on the spot to being a judge since it meant giving up some time on Sunday, but I wanted to help. I asked to send the information via email and I can see how we can help.

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The next day I posted a message on Teams if there was someone from Application Development that would be able to help.

Angel Raffety has volunteered to judge this weekend.

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Besides being a Judge we had offered to buy snacks for the event. Dan Kuyper bought the snacks and delivered them to the event on Saturday afternoon. Mostly popcorn and M&M’s.

Here is the Judge information given to Angel. A big thank you to her for volunteering.

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Here is Angel with the Winning team of the event.

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2019 Spring UNO ACM

On April 4th I had secured a presentation with the University of Nebraska-Omaha (UNO) student group Association for Computer Machinery (ACM). Based on experience the group looks for guest speakers to talk with more programming-focused base. Anything interesting in terms of  development tools, design patterns, algorithms, or data structures that have a big impact on development.

What I proposed which the group which they liked was a session on Blockchain development. The talk would be about understanding development in the Ethereum platform. I would shared the journey from doing a hackathon on blockchain to experimenting at FCSAmerica.  

Presentation

The meeting took place from 7-8PM at room PKI269. For the meeting we sponsored pizza, wings and snacks. A ACM meeting has about 25 members which was about the amount that showed up. I was lucky enough to have Dan Kuyper volunteered to assist in any way.

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I started right about 7:00 p.m. I showed the Technology Works Here Video. I then jumped into the presentation. During the time I passed around a iPad that had the Office 365 form.  I have been using the form to capture student information. Every student I followed up with a email with a link to a Github repository that had everything I talked about in a mark down.

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On the way out the president talked to me about being a judge at the Hackathon the group was putting on the upcoming weekend. I wasn’t able to commit at that time, but I knew this was something not to pass on. So look for a future post about the ACM hackathon.

2019 Spring UNO Capstone Cup Round 2

Round 2 of the University of Nebraska-Omaha College of Business Administration Capstone Cup took place on  Friday, March 29th

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This is also the image I used on Twitter.

For the 2nd Round of competition, the students are given a case briefing on a company–essentially a starting place for their research. The company the teams have been assigned is  ADT—yes, the security company.

The Itinerary for the event was the same as round 1.

Itinerary: March 29th

9:00 am          Arrival & Check In, Room 117

9:30 am          Presentation 1

10:00 am        Presentation 2

10:30 am        Presentation 3

11:00 am        Presentation 4

11:30 am        Presentation 5

12:00 pm        Debrief/Lunch

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I heard five presentations’ that tackled different perspectives from a company. One was focused on working with another company such as a pet security to a merger with a bigger home security provider.