March 2009 MUG Meeting

Last evening I attended the March 2009 MUG (Michigan Unix Users Group) meeting at the Farmington Hills Community Library.

The first speaker was Dennis Sarafa, Vice President of Variant Partners a management recruiting firm located in Ann Arbor. The topic was the interesting topic of “Active Career Management”. One of the main points of the presentation was that most people do not actively manage their career.

One of the questions that he posed to the audience involved how would one make a decision about whether to make a job move. He offered the following set of items (CLAMPS) as being the answer to that question.

  • Challenge
  • Location
  • Advancement
  • Money
  • People
  • Stabilty

This certainly seems to be a useful framework to understand and compare opportunities. Perhaps most importantly these criteria can be used to gain insight into your own personal values about your current job and a potential opportunity.

The second major concept that was discussed was around mapping your career in a three dimensional space with the following axis:

  • Y- Advancement
  • X-Skills
  • Y-Depth

One of my key takeaways from this part of the conversation was that although we all may implicitly do things to extend our skills on one or more of these dimensions we would benefit from making this an explicit and deliberate part of our career planning process.

The rest of the presentation about various aspects of “Networking” and why it was not just a good idea but an absolutely necessary activity.

Overall a very worthwhile presentation.

The second presentation was about the various aspects of the find command by Stephen Utti. Although I’ve used the find command for many years I did pick up a better understanding of the wealth of options that are available.

This was my first meeting since I presented a topic on Python and PostgreSQL Basics to the group in 2006.

I’m going to try to find a way to work future meetings into my schedule.