Because of my interest in helping people with HR processes, and learning techniques to be a better manager in general, I am frequently attracted to articles about mentoring. I’m also frequently disappointed with those columns that advocate a “one size fits all” closed approach to mentoring.
So colour me surprised when I saw an article on Pocket recently about questions that the best mentors ask, written by Gwen Moran (and originally shared on Fast Company). Some of them are pretty common-place in my view:
What does success look like to you?
What do you want to change? (usually as “where do you want to be in 3-5 years?”)
What options have you identified?
What are you reading? (not usually as a mentoring question, often more for interviewing)
But she also includes some more interesting open ones:
What does success look like to you? (a better phrasing than asking about their goals as it often leads to both visioning of ST and LT outcomes)
I finished taking my first MOOC on Understanding Video Games (#50by50 #32 – Complete a MOOC – Understanding Video Games) and next on my list was one related to Metaliteracy – Empowering Yourself in a Connected World. The description was pretty good, talking about being a bit more reflective about our online work, and it was offered through Coursera. The downside to that is that I’m really only interested in “passive learning”, watching the videos, etc., not actively engaging online with fellow students. That might seem like a cop-out of sorts, but I like the idea of a curated course that pulls together interesting material in a professional manner. It would be nice to be able to afford all The Great Courses library and work my way through those, and I have managed to snag a photography course through them (still in progress) plus two new astronomy titles (they were having a sale!). » Read the rest
Since I’m working from home, and I have an opportunity to do some additional training, AND I found out that the Ottawa Public Library has free access to Lynda.com training, I thought I would try to improve my Powerpoint skills. I use Powerpoint for various things at work, as well as some basic graphics work for my website from time to time, but I’ve never really had any formal training in it, particularly not in really getting the full bang for my buck. Lynda.com has a 14-hour training package to “become a PowerPoint 2013 MS Office specialist”, so why not?
The course starts with a quick intro to the various parts of the interface like the quick access bar, ribbon, task pane, main window, slide sorter, status bar etc. Nothing overly new there, I’ve been using it for quite a while. But even then, I did find it interesting that she views the task/activity pane as entirely optional as everything in it is also in the ribbon. » Read the rest
When I started blogging about my featured images (Astronomy), I was culminating a series of other steps that I had taken to even getting to this point. Since then, I have added other images (headers and websites, governance, writing, and anything goal-related). What remains to be covered are miscellaneous items (quotes, humour, etc.) and reviews.
I have a category called “family” and for a long time, I’ve used a simple symbol of a house. It’s a cute clipart image, kind of almost gingerbread-ish in its feel. But it doesn’t really say family to me. I have another one, a logo of two pandas together that my wife and I used for our wedding theme which I quite like. But it’s only two pandas — no image for our son. We called our son cub for quite some time, but a few years ago, he decided he’s a penguin. » Read the rest
Many of you have heard of Lynda.com before and if you have, you likely know it as that “IT training platform”. What you may not know is that it has become rebranded as LinkedIn Learning, and depending on how you get to it, you may see different logos. The Ottawa Public Library has an option to log in through their site, for free, you just need your OPL library card and a 4 digit PIN (likely the last four digits of your phone number, unless you changed it).You can find the link through OPL / BROWSE / ONLINE RESOURCES / LYNDA.COM
The main page will ask you for both your library card barcode number and your PIN to let you log in, and then ask you if you have ever had a Lynda.com account before — if you have, you can enter the info from that and transfer all your training history over to your new account. » Read the rest