Silicon Valley Adds Haircuts to Benefits Packages

by Allacyn - Mar 29, 2011


Yes, you read that right. Recruiting competition in the Silicon Valley has become intense, and this is making companies and start-ups across the valley begin to add unique things to their benefits packages. There is a shortage of engineers, programmers and developers that lack the skills the companies are looking for, and this has created a cutthroat environment for getting quality recruits. Giants like Google have stuck with tried and true incentives like hiking the wages for these positions by $20,000 in recent months, where others have resorted to the strange like one company offering free haircuts as an added benefit.

Another approach that is different is offering recruits information and future funds to start their own businesses one day. Many start-ups have realized that most of the qualified candidates for these positions are entrepreneurial and have hopes to start their own companies. To stay competitive many companies are even letting employees view product plans and financials to learn what it takes to build a business.

So, if the money isn’t enough to convince you to study up for those industry certifications, are extra benefits and incentives the tipping point? It all comes down to the fact that these companies need qualified people to fill open positions, and a good certification might just earn you competitive pay, and maybe some free haircuts too!

Do you currently have a job that offers some not-so-traditional benefits? Let us know in the comments!


Comments Off on Silicon Valley Adds Haircuts to Benefits Packages Filed under: Insights

Netiquette

by Allacyn - Mar 28, 2011


Netiquette is defined as the rules of etiquette that apply when communicating over computer networks, especially the internet; or in the World English Dictionary, as the informal code of behavior on the internet.

Whatever definition you use, it is an important part of life in the digital age we live in. In the computing dictionary it defines the most important rule as “Think before you post”. This is kind of an all encompassing rule, but the computing Dictionary goes on to define it further;

  • If it does not make a positive contribution or will not be of interest to several people, do not post it.
  • Personal messages should not be posted to newsgroups.
  • Re-read and edit your posting.
  • Don’t post test messages.
  • Don’t overuse smileys.
  • Don’t post a message until you have read through information on the website including FAQ page.

Read more »


Comments Off on Netiquette Filed under: Insights

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

by Allacyn - Mar 24, 2011


Is a little R-E-S-P-E-C-T all it takes to maintain an engaged workforce? In a recent blog, Engaging employees with RESPECT, the author Paul Marciano suggests that Aretha Franklin had it right all along. Marciano maintains that traditional rewards and recognition programs may work for a little while, but to keep employees engaged all you have to do is show a little respect. He goes on to list off some of the critical ways to do this and a lot of them are absolutely free to you.

Recognition: Thanking and recognizing employees and their accomplishments on a regular basis. Sometimes just being recognized can make an employee feel confident in their position and what they have to offer. This validation can be priceless!

Empowerment: Give employees training, tools, resources, and information that they need. Set them up for success! Giving your employees these tools will empower them and lead to innovation and success for your organization.

Supportive Feedback: Give feedback, positive or corrective. It is a good thing for employees to know where they are and where they can go. Not having this information can leave them floundering and decreased productivity.

Partnering: Create a collaborative work environment for employees. Collaboration can impact your organizations; profitability, sales growth, profit growth, customer satisfaction, productivity, product quality, product development, and innovation.

Expectation setting: Set goals for employees and hold them accountable for reaching those goals. This can provide direction to employees and provides motivation for them. Employees will know where they need to focus their attention and will be better equipped to spot distractions.

Consideration: Demonstrate thoughtfulness, empathy, and kindness. Employees are people and need to be treated that way, as individuals with unique capabilities. We all want to be treated as individuals.

Trust: Show employees that you trust their skills, abilities and decisions. When you give employees your trust they will feel more accountable and will want to rise up above your expectations so they avoid letting you down.


Comments Off on R-E-S-P-E-C-T Filed under: Insights

Happy Spring!

by Allacyn - Mar 22, 2011


Sunday marked the first day of Spring for those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere. Spring officially started at 7:21 PM ET Sunday, March 20, 2011. The vernal equinox or spring equinox occurs every year on either March 20 or March 21. What this means to us is that now our days are longer than our nights, for the next six months. Here are some interesting facts about spring equinox;

  • In most parts of the world it is equal in daylight hours and nighttime hours, but there are places that already have more daylight.
  • Fall and spring equinox are the only times when the sun rises due east and sets due west in a year.
  • These are also the only days when a person on the equator can see the sun passing directly overhead.
  • This day has been celebrated for thousands of years and it is celebrated all over the world.
  • Some other names for spring equinox celebrations are Norouz in Iran, Chunfen in China, and Ostara in Europe.
  • Many ancient structures were built to coincide with the sun’s position on vernal equinox like The Great Sphinx, the monliths at Stonehenge, and the Ancient Mayan Caracol Tower and Temples of the Sun and Moon.
  • One superstition on spring equinox is egg balancing, it is supposed to be possible to balance a raw egg on its oblong end. I wouldn’t try this at home because it has not been proven to work any better on spring equinox than any other day of the year.

Comments Off on Happy Spring! Filed under: Just For Fun Tags:

Graduates’ Career Interests Miss The Mark For Job Projections

by Allacyn - Mar 17, 2011


National and State specific data was released in a report from ACT showing that students are not pursuing careers in fields with the highest projected growth. The report showed that there is a gap between what students are interested in and job projections, and also that students are not prepared for coursework required in these fields.

Five highest-growth career fields:
– Education: such as secondary school teachers, secondary school administrators
– Computer/Information Specialties: such as computer programmers, database administrators
– Management: such as hotel/restaurant managers, convention planners
– Community Services: such as social workers, school counselors
– Marketing/Sales: such as insurance agents, buyers

Computer/ Information specialties account for the biggest gap with a 9% difference between job availability and the interest of students.

The question to ask now is, what is causing the gap? Are today’s students getting bored with these subjects? Are they not offered enough options to prepare for these job roles, and merely take a “safer” route?


Comments Off on Graduates’ Career Interests Miss The Mark For Job Projections Filed under: Education, Insights Tags:

Happy St. Patricks Day!

by Allacyn - Mar 17, 2011


St. Patrick’s Day brings to mind green, treasure, leprachauns, lucky charms, four-leaf clovers, and perhaps corned beef and cabbage? Here are some random facts about the Holiday.

  • March 17 in 461 AD St. Patrick, Patron Saint of the Irish, is believed to have died. This is why we celebrate March 17.
  • St. Patrick’s Day is a national holiday for Ireland and a provincial holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • Dublin, Ireland has a huge festival from March 15-19 to celebrate.
  • The Chicago River, in Chicago, IL is dyed green on St. Patrick’s Day.
  • Boston, MA has had a St. Patrick’s Day parade since 1737.
  • In Ireland people traditionally wear bunches of shamrocks on their jackets or hats, women and girls wear green ribbons in their hair and children wear orange, white, and green badges.
  • According to the 2003 Census 34 million Americans have Irish Ancestry – that is about nine times the population of Ireland.
  • Towns in the United States with Irish names; Mount Gay-Shamrock, WV, Shamrock Lakes, IN, Shamrock, OK, Shamrock, TX, Dublin, CA and Dublin, OH.
  • The Guiness Book of World Records for most leaves on a clover is 14.
  • It is estimated that there are 10,000 three-leaf clovers for every lucky four-leaf clover.
  • The legend is that the first leaf of a clover is for hope, the second is for faith, the third for love, and the fourth is for luck.

Wishing  you a lucky St. Patrick’s Day!


Comments Off on Happy St. Patricks Day! Filed under: Just For Fun

Individualized Learning

by Allacyn - Mar 15, 2011


In traditional classrooms there is one teacher teaching 30 or more students at one time. This creates an issue because not all of these students are the same in fact they are all very different in their learning styles and achievement levels. So how do you teach all of them what they need to learn when there is only one teacher?

There are new test programs that are starting at school districts that address this issue by answering the need for individualized learning. This is being done by first assesing students on a regular basis to gauge the level they are on. Then each students has their own schedule to adhere to and follow to meet their own needs.

Our training can be a great option to solve this problem by assessing each individuals strengths and needs. Each training has a pre-assesment to gauge where each student is and allows them to drill down skill gaps and focus on those areas. Our solution also allows students to learn at their own pace, and provides them with materials that meet the needs of any and all learning styles. Self-paced training gives students the opportunity to learn at their own pace, giving teachers the opportunity to help the students who need more one-on-one time. We provide expert-led, video-based training for students who are auditory or visual learners,  workbooks are available for those who learn better by completing activities.

For more information about using Learnkey as a solution in your classroom please visit www.learnkey.com/education.


Comments Off on Individualized Learning Filed under: Education Tags: ,

Happy Pi Day!

by Allacyn - Mar 14, 2011


March 14 was chosen to represent Pi Day because it resembles 3.14, but the official celebration begins at 1:59 PM to make an appropriate 3.14159. Here are some fun facts about Pi and Pi Day. Here at LearnKey we are celebrating by eating some PIE and you should too! That was a mouthful of Pi for one paragraph.

  • Pi is the number of times a circle’s diameter will fit around its circumference.
  • Pi is an irrational number.
  • So far Pi has passed all randomness tests.
  • In August 2010 a supercomputer calculated the value of Pi to 5 trillion decimal places.
  • Albert Einstein was born on Pi Day in 1879.
  • The first million decimal places of Pi consist of 99,959 zeros, 99,758 1s, 100,026 2s, 100,229 3s, 100,230 4s, 100,359 5s, 99,548 6s, 99,800 7s, 99,985 8s, and 100,106 9s. Glad I wasn’t the one tapped to figure that out.
  • Chao Lu holds the Guiness World Record for memorizing Pi to 67,890 places.
  • Pi Day was started by Larry Shaw at the San Francisco Exploratorium in 1989.
  • In 2009 the U.S. House of Representatives recognized March 14, 2009 as National Pi Day.
  • Traditional Pi Day celebrations include walking in circles, eating pie, and reciting as many digits of Pi as possible.
  • In 2015 March 15 will reflect 5 digits of Pi. 3/14/15.
  • MIT sometimes mails application decision letters to prospective students to be delivered on Pi Day.

Comments Off on Happy Pi Day! Filed under: Just For Fun

Changing Views of Education

by Allacyn - Mar 12, 2011


I’ve seen a few animations in the past from the folks at the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts (RSA), and they were all quite interesting. They take key speeches from their events and create an intricate marker board illustration, animated to follow along with the speech. Reading some of their YouTube comments, you’ll see people saying things like “I wish my teachers did this in school, it would have helped me learn a lot easier!”

We recently came across this video, where Sir Ken Robinson talks about traditional public education, and ways to reform it to do a better job of accommodating all students.

Read more »


Comments Off on Changing Views of Education Filed under: Education, Insights Tags:

CTP+ Replaces Convergence+

by Allacyn - Mar 11, 2011


CompTIA has replaced Convergence+ with CTP+ as its convergent technologies exam. This exam focuses on knowledge and skills needed to sell and service convergent technologies some of the concepts covered are requirements analysis, voice and multimedia applications. It is recommended that candidates have attained Network+ certification and have work experience in data networking and/or telephony fields. (View more information about CTP+)

At this time we are not offering this course, but I would like to find out if people are interested in this certification. Is this the certification you have been waiting for? Do you have previous certifications and are looking to add to your resume with this certification? If you are interested would you be getting it for you current position and if so what are some of your job roles?


Comments Off on CTP+ Replaces Convergence+ Filed under: Certification News Tags: , ,
Page 1 of 212