There’s a new book out called The Checklist Manifesto written by a general surgeon at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. I wondered why a book about checklists had been on the NY Times best seller list for 5 months.
I’m a list person. When my kids were small, I lived by lists. Somedays, I got so little done that I would add something to my list that I had done and then cross it off just to make myself feel better. Other people I know (and love) hate lists. They think it’s a sign of weakness and an insult to their intelligence. I’m not saying I’m right in my list making but the book helped me to think twice about the value of having a standard work list (can you say lean?) and checking yourself against it.
The doctor’s point is this. No matter how expert you are, a well-designed check list can improve results. The best-known use of checklists is by airplane pilots. If you are Pilot Sully Sullenberger and you’ve been flying for 30+ years, do you really need to get into a plane and run through a checklist? The answer of course is yes.
Are the rest of us think so smart or so special that we don’t need lists? Hmmm…
Most interesting to me is the author’s point that checklists, used properly, imply three transformative values:
Humility — we admit we need gentle reminders regarding the obvious
Discipline — we make ourselves go through this simple process
Teamwork — we take the time to be sure we are all on the same page
Imagine how different our workplace would be if we kept these 3 values in mind. I might be a list person but I’m going to start thinking about making new kinds of lists. Ok all you anti-list people, let’s hear it!
I teach social media for job hunters several times a month and meet lots of great people. When I talk about twitter, I often hear, “Twitter’s stupid.” If you don’t need a job and think twitter is stupid you can stop reading right now.
If you have an open mind, you might be very surprised at the number and types of jobs available on twitter. I was talking to a recruiter recently and she said that when she gets a new professional position, the FIRST place she posts it is twitter. Why? Because it’s easy, it’s free and she knows that only people who ‘get’ social media will be looking there. Only people with updated skills know to look on twitter.
Remember, you don’t have to have twitter followers or follow anyone to search the powerful real time network. Go to twitter, find the search box and input any of the following:
For those who haven’t quite come to grips with the fact that work is changing (forever), perhaps this blog post will change your point of view.
Virtual Vocations has 2239 open positions posted. This list consists of jobs that companies are hiring where employees will work from home:
HL7 Integration/Interface Engineers
Swimwear and Toy Designers
There are other openings for positions that are traditionally done remotely like technical recruiters, writers/bloggers/editors, animators/graphic designers, bookkeepers and translators.
As organizations look to be more nimble and respond to changing customer requirements quickly, virtual teams are needed to come together to meet these new and demanding schedules. How companies find, recruit, provide remote work tools for and pay the talent they need is going to be a big challenge. And for those of us who have the specialized skills that are needed, we will need to make ourselves known to these employers.
Flexibility, outstanding communication, updated skills and the ability to adapt are critical to being successful in the evolving world of work. And the best news is; we’re more likely to be able to attend our kids ball games, concerts and parent teacher conferences.