Management Symposium Abstracts

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Career Development | Leadership | Management

Career Development [Top]

  • Mentorship - Connecting IT Learning
    Stephanie Ayers, University of Georgia

    At the University of Georgia (UGA), in 2008, when budgets became snug and then became tighter, training for staff development and for just keeping current became a challenge that had to be addressed. IT staff cannot remain effective very long in today's world without sufficient learning opportunity to sharpen their skills. In leadership circles we discussed ways to find cost effective and free training and without much success. We had an IT community of more than 600 staff that was distributed around the campus. We tried to build a voluntary knowledge database for common access to both management and to technology shared knowledge. That just wouldn't fly. Then, we were introduced to a Mentorship Program from the U.S. Army and we saw an opportunity to build trust and to share knowledge, one paired relationship at a time. We started with four pairs and a six month "season" or class within the central IT organization (220 of the 600+ IT staff at UGA). We have grown now, first to the wider UGA IT community, and now to the University System of Georgia (USG) and to other System Schools. This spring's class has thirty-nine pairs and represents the most diverse class of mentors and proteges to date. Four USG schools are now using the program template to implement their own program versions We'd like to share a little bit of how to and some lessons learned. The punch line? Except for some resource time, the program has cost the grand total of $0.00 to date.

  • Staff Professional Development and Team Building
    Cindy Dooling, Pima Community College

    Pima Community College recently centralized IT services, bringing the IT employees from seven campus under the District User Support Services umbrella. Many of the staff had never met their peers from the other campuses, many felt stagnated in their current roles and some skill sets were not on the same level as was needed. Join me in discussing approaches that have proven successful with Pima's IT crowd. Ideas include targeted professional development activities, lunchtime Brown Bag presentations, an IT book club, job shadowing, tech swap, peer panel presentations, ExploreIT and An Amazing IT Race. Developing unique and tantalizing activities to get staff participation as well as develop their skills can be daunting. Events, such as these, have been exceedingly successful with extraordinary levels of involvement and greater positivity in staff morale that has led to the most competent cross-institution teams.

  • Coaching to Inspire
    Theresa Rowe, Oakland University

    Career Development Inspired staff members are engaged, enthusiastic and excited about their jobs. When inspired, our staff members make significant contributions to our strategic plans. We are more likely to retain staff members who feel successful and who feel they are making positive contributions. Coaching is a time-proven technique to improve the performance of our staff members and our teams. To be most effective, coaching needs to go beyond saying what an individual did right or wrong. Coaching needs to inspire staff members to make the strongest possible contribution in any setting. In this session, I will describe the characteristics of inspired individuals and inspired teams. We will review coaching techniques that have shown to be useful when managing teams. Finally, I want to bring those ideas together, and suggest techniques to use coaching techniques to inspire staff members and teams. What approaches can we use to encourage engagement and enthusiasm in our work, beyond being the best technical teams? What value does an inspired staff provide to the university organization? Group discussion will focus on expanding and sharing our experiences in that context.

  • Thinking about advancing your career in IT leadership? There's no time like the present to start!
    Scott Emery, Oregon State University

    Advancing your career as an IT leader often requires being pro-active and open to investing your time. Whether you get a job offer or not, the experience of going through an interview process can be a rewarding and valuable professionally. In this discussion session, I'll share some of the valuable lessons learned and experiences gained as I've applied and been recruited for job opportunities for IT leadership positions in higher ed. I plan to spend the first 20-30 minutes framing the topic, sharing some key diverse experiences I've had, engaging the audience in questions along the way, then opening it up for others to share their knowledge and experience and engage the rest of the group. I plan to focus this talk around an air of encouragement. For anyone who is thinking of taking the next step in their careers, my hope through this session is to give them that nudge to push themselves and follow through with a recruiter or apply for a position of interest.

Leadership [Top]

  • Leader or Manager? The qualities of each, and the challenge to be good at both.
    Patrick Gossman, Wayne State University

    Early in my career I was taught to be an IT manager. Later, as we went through early quality of service training, we were told that most staff failures were the fault of managers. Then came the new thinking that management was passe.... We should all be leaders. And we learned of the higher calling of leadership as opposed to the "old, out-dated" practice of management. We all felt quite lifted up as we were now all leaders.... until a very large study came along that said good leaders attracted good talent, but bad managers drove that talent away. The report also stated that it wasn't possible to be both a good leader and a good manager. It's a wonder we all weren't overcome by guilt or schizophrenia. In this session we'll start by laying out the stated qualities of a good manager and those of a good leader, and look to see if session participants agree. Then, we'll debate the questions: Must you be both? Can you be both? How do session participants see themselves and juggle the different demands associated with each function? Session participants should leave the session knowing they're not alone. This isn't easy, but they can expect to leave with a better understanding of the challenges associated with management and leadership, and some best practices for dealing with those challenges, so they can improve their performance and health and that of their teams.

  • Retreating to Reach New Heights
    Chris Koch, Lafayette College
    Courtney Bentley, Lafayette College

    Within many IT organizations, the annual departmental retreat has become as welcome as performance evaluations, department-wide meetings, and obligatory holiday celebrations. Over the past five years, the Information Technology Services management team at Lafayette College has refined the planning and execution of their retreat from a "feel good" day out of the office to a driver of change within the IT organization and to the services provided to the campus community. This presentation will map out the process that Lafayette has developed to deliver a department retreat that is focused on turning talking points and "blue sky" ideas into actionable items that are integrated into the ITS planning process.

  • Breaking Up is Hard to Do
    Robert Howard, Armstrong University
    Shawn Ellis, University of Georga
    Bob Black, Miami University

    Even as we gain solid footing for planning the lifecycle for major technology services and infrastructure, there is always an undercurrent of disruption that continually threatens old business models and existing relationships. Most of the time there is a period of overlapping costs, vendors, and skills needed where your organization must continue providing an existing service even while investing in a new service or an existing service provided in a manner different than the current state (outsourcing infrastructure, SAAS, new vendor, etc). We are continually breaking up with our past selves, and this is hard! This presentation will cite examples and principles from three universities' experience that will minimize that overlap, help you understand when you can eliminate that overlap, and how to ensure that you will minimize over investment in unproven technologies or services. We will focus on how to lead and organization through paradigm changes. We will discuss how to plan for emerging and disruptive technologies, and how that can lead to displacement of current vendors, infrastructure, and even staffing skill sets. We will work to help you get a plan in place based on our experiences..the good..the bad..and the ugly.

  • Communication and Collaboration – Building Trust, Delivering Quality
    Beth Rugg, Ithaca College

    The desktop environment is every changing. Budgets are flat and employees are being asked to do more with less. IT has moved from being a service provider to a commodity. Our users just expect the technology to work. IT providers are faced with rapidly changing environments and are being asked to deliver more with less. How can this been done successfully? Within the last several years, Ithaca College has changed almost everything related to the desktop: we implemented a new networking environment, a new VPN, outsourced email and calendar systems, released new operating systems, new versions of the Microsoft Office productivity suite, and required authentication to all desktops and moved from the Novell environment to a Windows environment. Despite all of these changes, our user community reports that, in general, they are "very satisfied" with the service and support they receive. How did we do it? In this session, we will give an overview of the internal and external practices and policies that are the foundation of our success. These practices include project management, change management, incident management, collaborative liaison programs and clear service and support standards and guidelines.

  • Staffing for Success
    Kristen Dietiker
    , University of Washington

    Have you ever regretted a hire you made? Wondered why the person who looked so good in the interview didn't later perform at the level you expected? Or wondered why the new employee with the slam-dunk skillset has fractured your team? Hiring the right staff is a crucial skill for all managers to master. Without the right team in place, many of our most important IT initiatives can stall, customer satisfaction can decrease, and the morale of your best and brightest can suffer. This session will address a range of staffing subjects including recruitment, selection, and retention. We'll discuss best practices, new ideas, and lessons learned. Whether you're a new manager or a seasoned CIO, improving your skill around identifying and selecting the best IT talent can help your team and your institution reach new heights!

  • Develop and maintain a culture of trust
    Lucas Friedrichsen, Oregon State University
    Jacob Morris, University of Washington
    Allan Chen, Menlo College
    Ben Arnold, University of Northern Iowa
    Mo Nishiyama, Oregon Health Sciences University

    As a leader or a manager, the trust relationship you have with your staff, stakeholders, customers, donors and beyond can make or break your organization, particularly in higher education IT. Building a culture of trust takes time and effort, but provides benefits for many years to come. The departmental and, on a larger scale, organizational culture permeates all operations, groups, and units, and can have widespread effects, both good and bad. It is all the more important, therefore, to put in the time to develop this cultural component. During this collaborative presentation and discussion, we will explore methods to build and maintain a culture of trust that empowers your staff, informs your customers and benefits the entire university.

Management [Top]

  • The Gift that Keeps on Giving: Are Students Right for You?
    Chris King, North Carolina State University

    To the outsider, it must seem like such an easy decision to hire student workers. A cheap, educated labor force that recycles itself every four years (or so) is an employer's dream, and workers with a vested interest in the success of the organization without the hassle of stock options is just icing on the cake. But, there is more to this issue than meets the eye. Student workers raise all sorts of concerns regarding information access and security, how their pay affects their financial aid, and how often you have to retrain the next hydra head when employees graduate or find other jobs. This paper and presentation will discuss how North Carolina State University's central help desk made the decision to hire student workers, get rid of them for a few years, and then hire them back, and the ramifications of each decision.

  • Deploying and Managing Software, what is the "Best Practice?"
    Gale Fritsche, Lehigh University
    Jeff Deschler, Lehigh University

    Lehigh University recently developed and implemented a web-based software distribution tool that is used to distribute native software installers to faculty and staff on campus. In order for a project of this size and complexity to be successful, numerous obstacles need to be crossed and various stakeholders need to be involved through the entire process. This discussion will focus on the journey through the development and implementation processes, specifically focussing on 5 key elements (in level of importance):

    1. Planning
    2. Communication
    3. Software Licensing
    4. Limitations (Technical and Non-Technical)
    5. Workflow Processes (Maintenance and Upgrades)

    A brief demonstration of the product will be given, followed by a facilitated discussion that allow attendees to discuss software deployment solutions at his/her institutions, comparing the advantages and disadvantages of each method used.

  • Can I Have This Week's Allowance? - Managing a Budget at a Tuition-Based Institution
    Allen Chen, Menlo College

    Budget management is a fact of life for many staff, managers and directors. Regardless of the size of your institution, organization, department or unit, one has to track expenses, allocate or reallocate as needed in responses to changes and/or new initiatives, and of course keep an eye on the bigger, strategic goals. At Menlo College, there is an additional twist. With a 95% dependency on tuition, understanding and working with cash flows is of paramount importance. This session will look at budgeting models on both annual as well as capital project perspectives.

  • Passing the Torch: New skills and needs for the Next Generation of Management
    Scott Saluga, Oberlin College

    As I progress in my career and attempt to move upward, I have witnessed traditional managers and administrators frown upon potential applicants that possess more diverse interpersonal skills than traditional technical skills. While understanding the technology that runs a department or section is incumbent upon anyone within IT management, today's world is less concerned about specific technical skills and more about personal interaction or customer service skills. As we outsource or farm out large parts of our infrastructure that we once housed within our departments, being able to deal with a differing set of issues and demands requires a different type of management. Our management ranks are graying and there is not enough attention paid to the care and grooming of the next generation of IT Management. This facilitated discussion will attempt to bring to light the new demands and skill sets that will define management in the coming years.

  • Securing the Enterprise
    Timothy Foley, Lehigh University
    Richard Nelson, The Citadel
    Keith Hartranft, Lehigh University

    Have phishing scams, Trojans, viruses, malware, and poor security practices placed your school at risk? What do you do when you discover a breach? How do you strengthen your environment to better respond to the current cyber security threats? This discussion will focus on the above questions while presenting case studies of some of the things that have been done at our schools to place a stronger emphasis on cyber security. We will cover the development of a security awareness program, a number of risks that we have found in our current environments and our efforts to mitigate them, as well as steps that one can take to implement a vulnerability assessment and penetration testing program. Everyone in the audience will be encouraged to share their concerns and methods of dealing with security at your institution.

  • Does your institution suffer from dissociative identity disorder?
    Sheri Prupis
    , New Jersey Research & Educational Network

    How many identities does your institution have in facebook, twitter, linked in and other public locations on the internet? Professors and students repeatedly create social media sites branded with their current institution. It may be for a class or for social reasons, but continually social media sites are created outside of institutional administrative and IT control. That faculty and students create in social media is a good thing in the era of the Read/Write Web. However, institutions must develop social media strategies and policies. Institutions are at risk when a professor sets up a class in facebook (think ADA Compliance!) The formal part of the presentation will review why an institutional social media strategy and policy is necessary and what basic elements comprise a good one. It is important to understand why faculty and students want to work outside the formal tools offered by the institution. Policies, procedures and consequences already exist in faculty and student handbooks, such as intellectual property rights and copyright, and appropriate behaviors, but it is not always stated explicitly with regard to social media. A strategic roadmap for social media creates a positive institutional approach to social media that offers guidance and assistance to faculty students so that the institution's image and liability are protected while allowing faculty and students to develop professional learning environments that go beyond the walls and student roster of the local institution. Social media has an important role in the educational ecosystem. Stacked with an LMS, email, and google docs, social media becomes a powerful way to engage a larger learning community. Participants will be encouraged to share their social media strategies and the steps taken to develop them.

  • Technology in Classrooms and Events Spaces: A Panel Discussion
    Mathew Felthousen, Cleveland College of Art and Design
    Lisa Barnett, New York University School of Law
    Terry Ruger, Ithaca College

    This panel discussion will explore how we all plan, build, and support Technology in public spaces, albeit classrooms or event spaces. We will ask three questions: Does your school have a rational planning and budget process, or it is an example of renegade-heroic one-off projects that can be typical of IT, or somewhere in between? When your campus added new teaching spaces or event spaces, how did it affect your support plan and services? How are you incorporating the changing demands for teaching and learning given the changing technology landscape? The panel will offer viewpoints on these questions from three different viewpoints: NYU School of Law, Ithaca College, and the University of Rochester. We would then open the discussion to the audience.