Canadian IT Manager's Blog

Broadly connecting Canadian Infrastructure and Development Managers through career, industry and technology insight.

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  • Blog Post: Introducing the Monthly AlignIT Manager Tech Talk Series

    I had anticipated that the past few weeks would be pretty low-key given that most of my colleagues are on vacation, but I’ve found the opposite true as we ramp up for our newest project under the AlignIT banner: a monthly live streamed video series, hosted by myself and my colleague Jonathan Rozenblit...
  • Blog Post: The Role of Certification in Building and Motivating Your Team

    I used to play basketball in high school, which won’t surprise anyone who’s met me – I’m a 5 foot 10 woman and have been since, oh, about grade 5. However I quit in grade 11 after just 2 seasons. The reason? The coach wouldn’t let me expand my skills. I wanted to work on dribbling and other ball handling...
  • Blog Post: On the Next Manager Tech Talk: The Complete Cloud Picture–a Gamut of Choice

    Last November, Jonathan and I were thrilled to have Mary Jo Foley on our show. Mary Jo is an industry expert and well known tech journalist with over 25 years of experience. We talked about the Future of IT and found Mary Jo to be a great guest who was able to share valuable insights into the IT industry...
  • Blog Post: Exposing Vista Myths and Making Deployments Easy

    Perhaps easy in the title should be replaced with easier . After all, deploying a new desktop operating system is still not as simple as a mere push of a button and it's still not a job to give to your grade school nephew. Easy is a relative term. However, with each new desktop operating system, the...
  • Blog Post: Need help studying for your 70-659 exam? Join one of our study groups!

    Different people learn in different ways and in my last post about the great incentives there are to take exam 70-659 Windows Server Virtualization before May 31st, I also listed a number of resources you could use to study up. Depending on your learning style, different resources will appeal to you...
  • Blog Post: Align IT: IT Manager Podcast #33 – The Business Case for Team Diversity

    It’s no secret that less women than ever are choosing information technology as a career. But few IT managers know why it matters and those that do may be at a loss to know how to recruit and retain a gender diverse team. In this edition, we listen to a condensed version of a webcast talk given by Dr...
  • Blog Post: Countdown to EnergizeIT

    Yikes! Where did the last 2 weeks disappear to? The IT Managers Connection blog has been a bit quiet lately but it's not because we've gone away. Stephen has been on the road at various events and I've been preparing for a number of activities related to EnergizeIT and planning for our next fiscal year...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Private Cloud part 2: unlimited virtualization rights

    A new whitepaper was released in January comparing private cloud solutions from Microsoft and VMware, taking a look at the functionality, benefits and economics of each solution. This series of blog posts breaks down the components of the whitepaper into consumable chunks and I’ve added my own...
  • Blog Post: Using SharePoint to Aid Internal Collaboration

    Way back in February, Microsoft put on a huge event to announce the launch of Windows Server 2008, Visual Studio 2008 and SQL Server 2008. Seems so long ago now! I was there, along with thousands of others, taking in the keynotes and hanging out by the "Ask the Expert" area. While there, I also had...
  • Blog Post: Week 3 of the Ignite Your Career Series

    A little while ago, I posted about the Ignite Your Career webcast series that Rick is hosting, where we invite a panel of industry veterans to answer questions submitted by audience members. It all takes place online through Live Meeting. Although you won't necessarily know that I'm there, I'm the one...
  • Blog Post: Upcoming January IT Manager Webcasts

    I'm a little late with this as it's already January but you've still go time to register for the following IT Manager Webcasts as the first one isn't until January 10. Most, if not all, are recorded and available on demand after the live webcast date. Date Title Level Technology Host Link Thurs, Jan...
  • Blog Post: On the Next AlignIT Manager Tech Talk: The Complete Cloud Picture–Stories from the Trenches

    As children we are enthralled by the stories that we hear. Stories teach us and fire our imaginations to what is possible in this world. And as adults, we’re not much different. It’s one thing to hear about a process, product or idea, but hearing the story of the trials and triumphs that accompanied...
  • Blog Post: Live from SecTor

    Having worked in IT for many years and having had to clean up mail servers at organizations that had been used to relay spam and file servers that had been conscripted to be used as repositories for contraband movie files, I know what can happen when you leave your systems vulnerable. So when we added...
  • Blog Post: PowerShell and What You Need to Know

    It's funny isn't it...you can say the same words to different people and they mean different things. Take "IT Manager" for example. Some IT Managers manage IT projects, others manage IT staff. Some work in large corporations, some in small organizations. So when it comes to something like PowerShell...
  • Blog Post: Animating with High Performance Computing

    Last July , we talked on the IT Manager Podcast series about how high performance computing (HPC) is moving from the exclusive realm of academic and large company research and becoming accessible for mid-sized companies. We're seeing all sorts of commercial uses for this technology and its use is impacting...
  • Blog Post: The Agile Method - It’s Not Just for Software Development

    Jonathan and I had the distinct pleasure last week of sitting down with Sam Guckenheimer for a chat and while the focus of our talk was applying the Agile methodology to delivering great software, it got me thinking about using the Agile method in other areas of life and work. In fact, the night before...
  • Blog Post: Wanted: IT Innovators

    It's that time of year again! With the advent of cooler weather comes the search for Canadian IT professionals who are having an impact on their workplace and communities through innovative uses of technology. This year we've added an additional category for teams, so there are more opportunities for...
  • Blog Post: Podcast on High Performance Computing

    Traditionally, high performance computing (HPC) has been regulated to the realm of academia. Researchers use it when they need the ability to do some serious number crunching in order to complete years of processing in just days or to visualize complex data sets. In the past, the technology has been...
  • Blog Post: Resources for Retention

    You can attend all the conferences, seminars, and training courses that you want, but just watching and listening will only allow you to retain about 10% of the information given to you. A measly 10%. That’s a pretty low return on your investment. Luckily, we’ve designed TechDays to help participants...
  • Blog Post: AlignIT IT Manager Podcast #40 – Straight Talk about Windows Azure

    A little while ago I posted about the new series that we’ve started – the Manager Tech Talk Video series. We broadcast each episode live on the 2nd Thursday of the month and record it for on-demand access later. I take the audio and use it to create an episode for our long standing IT Manager Podcast...
  • Blog Post: AlignIT Manager Tech Talk #3 – Planning Your Windows Roadmap

    A little while ago I posted about the new series that we’ve started – the Manager Tech Talk Video series. We broadcast each episode live on the 2nd Thursday of the month and record it for on-demand access later. I take the audio and use it to create an episode for our long standing IT Manager...
  • Blog Post: Employee Retention: Increasing Job Satisfaction on Your Team

    One of the things I’ve discovered about working for Microsoft is that the first couple of months feel a little like trying to drink from a fire hose – there is a lot to take in. So it was only the other day that I finally got the chance to browse through my December issue of Windows IT Pro magazine....
  • Blog Post: Heros Happen Here in Canada

    Last year we launched Vista, Office 2007 and Exchange 2007. Not to be outdone, this year the big launch is SQL 2008, Windows 2008 and Visual Studio 2008! And this time around, we're doing thing a little differently. Rick put up a great post this morning explaining the approach we're taking. Please read...
  • Blog Post: Things I Learned at ITIL Training – The Deming Cycle

    I’m a process person, so when my boss suggested I go on ITIL training, I jumped at the chance. Seriously. I love this stuff! And I was delighted to find that we had an excellent instructor – Barry Brown from Pink Elephant . He has a great way of using stories and analogies from his life to...
  • Blog Post: Soon there will be no need for humans at all

    This week I’m in Seattle, at an internal Microsoft conference called TechReady. If I hadn’t already felt like I was drinking through a fire hose, I certainly do now! It’s a Mecca of technical presentations, hands-on labs and web casts on everything from architecting IT solutions to developing applications...