Blogging is latest tool for IBM Companies learn about Web diariesBy Julie Moran AlterioGannett News Service

When Christopher Barger started a blog almost three years ago, he wanted to write about something other than technology and business — topics that filled his days as an executive speechwriter at the Armonk headquarters of IBM Corp.

Barger, a 37-year-old Yonkers resident, wrote in his online journal about the Indianapolis Colts and trivia such as who was likely to be Time’s person of the year.
So, about a year ago, he was surprised to learn that his readers included some people he wasn’t counting on: his bosses.

“I realized that the powers that be were aware of this,” he said. “They were reading it frequently.”
“Panic” is how he describes his initial reaction.
Even though he had never blogged about IBM, Barger wasn’t sure how managers would feel about his extracurricular activity. But instead of getting disciplined, Barger got promoted.
Today, he is IBM’s “blogger in chief,” and he is helping lead the computer giant’s efforts to make everyone in the company familiar with blogs. “My hobby became my job,” Barger said.
Blogs are multiplying
Blogs — regularly updated online journals that mix commentary with links to news on the Web — are in the sights of such corporations as IBM, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Sun Microsystems, General Motors and Boeing as they multiply.

Technorati, a search engine for blogs, reports that 70,000 new blogs a day join the 23.7 million already in existence.

Corporations are joining the “blogosphere” to take part in the online debates that involve their brands, products and industries.
For instance, a search on Technorati shows 218,855 postings containing the word “IBM,” including 20 in one hour alone on a recent Friday night.

David Sifry, chief executive at Technorati, said corporations are worried by the idea that a disgruntled customer can reach thousands or millions of people with a blog.
“In the world of the Internet, you don’t own your brand. Your customers and your users own your brand. You’re lucky if you get to shepherd it. That loss of control is very scary,” Sifry said.
Companies want to get smart about blogs with the idea that “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em,” said Debbie Weil, an online marketing consultant and author of the forthcoming book, “The Corporate Blogging Book: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know to Get It Right.”
“They’ll be knocked over unprepared if the blogosphere starts talking about their brand, product or service and they’re not listening to what’s being said about them,” Weil said.
Irving Wladawsky-Berger, IBM’s vice president of technical strategy and innovation and the company’s highest-ranking blogger, said Big Blue is encouraging employees to bone up on blogging for the same reason it asked them to get savvy about Web commerce in the 1990s.
“We absolutely recognize that blogging, just like the Internet, World Wide Web, Linux and open source, is a major initiative in the marketplace that we should be part of. The best way to be part of it is not to observe it passively but to do it actively,” Wladawsky-Berger said.
Sifry said the ranks of corporate bloggers are growing. A year ago, there were about 7,400, a number that doubled to 15,000 six months ago in the most recent survey.
“We’re still very much in the early stages of how corporations are learning to use blogs,” said Sifry, who said the most important thing blogs do is give a human face to the corporate facade.
For instance, Robert Scoble, who writes the “Scobleizer” blog for Microsoft, has mitigated some of the hatred directed at the software giant by talking candidly about the company’s faults, Sifry said.

In another example, the face of General Motors to the blogging world is Vice Chairman Bob Lutz, whose FastLane Blog caters to car fans.
Sifry also likes the blog of John Patrick, who was vice president of Internet technology at IBM until he left the company in 2001 to write and consult.
“John is a wonderful example of the power of the authoritative human voice. That’s what blogs are good at amplifying. The corporate voice is what you read in press releases. What you have here with John or Bob at FastLane or Robert Scoble at Microsoft is unequivocally human,” Sifry said.

Unique perspectives
Wladawsky-Berger said that even when he writes about technology, what’s distinctive is his own perspective.
“Even if you’re writing about mainframes or you’re writing about XML, it’s your personal style that comes across. What you choose to write about is which of the contents of your head are you sharing with the world,” he said.
Wladawsky-Berger isn’t shy about being a public voice for IBM by speaking at conferences and giving interviews in newspapers and magazines, but he was originally reluctant to become a blogger.
“Some people, especially John Patrick, had been urging me to take on blogging, and I always resisted. I wasn’t sure who in the world wanted to read anything I had to write,” he said. “I looked at it almost as vanity.”
What changed Wladawsky-Berger’s mind was the growing prominence of blogs in the media as well as IBM’s adoption of blogging as a corporate initiative this past May, led by Barger and a group of fellow bloggers in the company.
IBM is approaching blogs from three directions:
The company is hosting blogs on topics important to its business, such as video games and health care.
IBM is encouraging employees to create blogs for internal consumption on the company intranet.
Employees who do blog on the Internet have IBM’s blessing — providing they follow some practical guidelines.
The rules include identifying yourself as an IBMer if you talk business, not revealing company secrets and stating clearly that your opinions are your own.
IBM’s guidelines were developed last spring by a team of about 25 bloggers in the company. They get a thumbs-up from Technorati’s Sifry.
“IBM has done a really good job here. It’s a very sane document. They talk about being smart about what you’re going to blog about,” he said.
IBM created the subject matter blogs as a way to present its people as experts on more than computers — a key strategy as the company’s expanding Global Services business means more revenue is derived from dispensing advice rather than technology alone.
IBM’s life sciences team, for instance, participates in a health care blog that discusses issues such as genetics privacy.
“Getting our folks out there and getting engaged with communities that matter to them, whether it’s with other developers or customers, is good for IBM,” Barger said. “It isn’t just about us sharing our expertise and telling those communities what they want to hear. We learn just as much.”
Thematic approach
Creating a theme blog is smart because customers are more likely to enjoy reading about a topic important to them than an overt sales pitch, said marketing strategist Steve Rubel, a senior vice president at CooperKatz & Co. in New York and author of the Micro Persuasion blog.
“The secret to a good corporate blog is that it has to be high interest, and if your subject matter isn’t, you have to figure out a way to connect with subjects that are,” he said.
For example, yogurt maker Stonyfield Farm has blogs on babies and women. “There’s not much there on yogurt, but it’s all about a higher calling, which is women and children’s health,” Rubel said.
Bicycle maker Cannondale has adopted a similar approach with blogs that talk about triathlons and finding the best mountain bike trails.
Robin Hopper, CEO of iUpload, a maker of blogging software for companies, said businesses often test out the idea by creating blogs for inside the company first.
For example, McDonald’s hired iUpload to develop a blogging platform on its intranet as an avenue to exchange ideas. “Internal blogs are becoming knowledge repositories,” Hopper said.
IBM had the same idea when it rolled out tools last May that allow every employee to create a blog on the company intranet.
So far, 16,416 people have registered and 2,291 have created active blogs.
Among the most popular bloggers is an IBMer from Japan who likes to discuss idiomatic phrases in English and a researcher in California who is running a pet contest, Barger said.
The blogs also are a place where workers talk about their projects, ask for help and learn about what their colleagues are up to.
“When we started out in May and told people to experiment, there were a lot more personal things in the blogs. As it has grown and evolved, people are using it as a collaboration tool,” Barger said.
“The personal stuff is still there, and we’re glad it is, because any time you can make a company of 329,000 people feel smaller, that’s a good thing.”
What about criticizing IBM? That’s OK, too, Barger said.
He said the proof came just two weeks after the initiative started when an employee blasted the company’s falling stock price and recent layoffs in her blog. The post received 1,200 views by noon.

Instead of chastising the employee, Barger posted a comment on her blog that thanked her for her candor, acknowledged some of her points and challenged her logic where he felt it was flawed.
“This is a new medium with new rules. A lot of folks aren’t used to the idea of candor being OK,” Barger said. “Now, we’re saying it’s OK to share your opinions.”
The employee gets heard, and the company also learns what people are thinking.
“We can’t be in every happy hour. We can’t be in every car pool. This was an opportunity to communicate with employees on their turf,” Barger said.

This is Himanshu here and you have logged into my blogspace and i hope you enjoy this journey of blogging!!!

Tired of searching for a doc or mail in your system.Try this one out and this will keep your CPU free for other work

Check out this for getting the date and time of any place in this world.

Wanted to use Instant Messenger in the office but it is blocked.Than this will solve your problem

Wanted to encrypt all the data that you have.Than you have PGP(Pretty Good Privacy) for yourself

Wanted a secure email service,than need to check this mail service which enables you to send email to the desired recepient without any violation

Another secure mail service

Planning to do an MBA and dont know much about MBA Forums and their usefulness than you have to check this MBA forum which has impressed me a lot and the best part would be to check out more about its young founder Allwin Agnel

Want to read news or other conent on the web page and still waiting for the images on the web page to be downloaded than you need to have a look at RSS(Rich Site Summary) Reader

Now Mobile blogging goes on the blocks.


This page will be continually updated as and when i find new and interesting links.If you have any interesting link to share with others, mail me on


It is just a usual day when i begin browsing on the internet and suddenly realize that there might be many web browsers available which might be offering better facilities than Microsoft’s Internet Explorer popularly called as IE.What exactly made me think about this?May be when i see my task bar full of IE’s(by opening many instances of IE) , i get this feeling that i should get another Web-Browser which would not clutter my tray with so many things and also makes the job easier.

So,i start searching on the internet for Web Browsers and as usual , get many of them.Now i am in a bit of dilemma as to which one is the best replacement for IE or which one can offer more facilities than IE.And the result comes out to be the open source browser Firefox which is now freely available for download on Mozilla.Now,the question to be asked is what additional features does Firefox have which makes it superior to Microsoft’s IE.

May be at the very first glance Firefox seems to be like IE but when we dig into Firefox,we will come to know that there are many,if not plenty of differences between IE and Firefox and it is due to those small additional features makes Firefox stand tall in front of pigmy like IE.It is my bet that once a person starts using Firefox he would never return to IE except for cases where Firefox is not supported.

Imagine opening many instances of Firefox but instead of getting bunch of windows , what you see on your PC is a single instance of Firefox.This is the Tabbed Facility of Firefox where many instances of Firefox windows are seperated by Tabs allowing better navigation between the windows and hence making browsing pleasurable and enjoyable.This feature was original by Mozilla and is now supported by Opera and Safari browsers as well.

There might be many other technical differences between the two browsers but for a novice person,even switching between the windows makes a big difference.

This is the time when Microsoft thinks about its strategies to revamp IE and bring it to the mark of Firefox since we see only some minor upgradation in Windows but IE still remains the same.In this crunch of the competition,such small things matter and may be in the case of Browsers,David “IE” may lose the race to the Goliath “Firefox”

(This article will be updated as and when more information is received and would welcome the reader’s inputs as well).

Source : Economic Times,
Date : 09/10/05

  • Set up regular progress reports

Many problems arise due to lack of communication, you can avoid it by interacting with your boss on a regular basis.

Sit down with your boss and bring him up-to-date on projects. He will thus come to know what you are presently working on, is your performance up to the mark. Also, he can give you suggestions as to how you can overcome your shortcomings, if any.

The effect? Developing the boss/employee relationship, which will ultimately make working together more favourable.

  • Focus on the problem, not the boss

At times you just assume that you have a bad boss who doesn’t care about you. Have you ever gone forward yourself and tried to know what he really is?

Perhaps the boss isn’t the problem; maybe you just can’t get a good communication flow going. Don’t be shy to pull him aside when something doesn’t go your way.

Talk things over and don’t take it personally.

  • Work with your boss, not against him

Remember he is a more experienced person than you. There is so much you can learn from him.
Doing joint work will promote chemistry between you and your boss.
Be proactive and let him take some credit for your good work, so long as he’s aware of the source of it.

  • Go over his head

If you feel he is hampering your growth, it is about time you took some action. Don’t let him kill our efforts. Talk to him directly about this. Observe for some time, if he is trying to make things better, fine.

Still, if you see that you’re going nowhere fast, then consider talking to his supervisor.

Being productive is far more important than pleasing your boss, at the expense of the company.

  • Plan an out-of-office meeting

Do you keep trying to catch your boss for two minutes to pitch him a new idea, but he doesn’t have time?
Invite him for a quick drink after work to discuss some things.This encounter will serve the dual purpose of showing you take your job to heart and want to better your boss/employee relation.

  • Change departments, or quit

You have tried everything, still there are no signs of improvement.

Its about time you asked to be transferred to another department if you work in a big enough firm – or simply hand in your resignation letter.

Only you know your own worth, and if you don’t feel respected, motivated and so on, then move on.

Move from one job to another, but only for the right reasons

It’s yet another day at office. As I logged on to the marketing andadvertising sites for the latest updates, as usual, I found the headlinesdominated by ‘who’s moving from ne company to another after a shortstint’, and I wondered, why are so many people leaving one job foranother?

Is it passe now to work with just one company for a sufficientlylong period?
Whenever I ask this question to people who leave a company, the answers Iget are: “Oh, I am getting a 200% hike in salary”; “Well, I am jumpingthree levels in my designation”; “You know, my job profile is verydifferent there”; “Well, they are going to send me abroad in six months”.
Then, I look around at all the people who are considered successful todayand who have reached the top – be it a media agency, an advertising agencyor a company. I find that most of these people are the ones who have stuckto the company, ground their heels and worked their way to the top. And,as I look around for people who changed their jobs constantly, I find theyhave stagnated at some level , in obscurity!

In this absolutely ruthless, dynamic and competitive environment, thereare still no short-cuts to success or to making money. The only thing thatcontinues to pay, as earlier, is loyalty and hard work. Yes, it pays!Sometimes, immediately, sometimes after a lot of time. But, it does pay.
Does this mean that one should stick to an organisation and wait for thatgolden moment? Of course not. After a long stint, there always comes atime for moving in most organisations, but it is important to move for theright reasons, rather than superficial ones, like money, designation or anoverseas trip. Remember, no company recruits for charity. More often thannot, when you are offered an unseemly hike in salary or designation thatis disproportionate to what that company offers it current employees,there is always an unseen bait attached. The result? You will, in thelong-term, have reached exactly the same levels or maybe lower levels thanwhat you would have in your current company.

A lot of people leave an organisation because they are “unhappy”. What isthis so-called-unhappiness? I have been working for donkey’s years andthere has never been a day when I am not unhappy about something in mywork environment-boss, rude colleague, fussy clients etc.
Unhappiness in a workplace, to a large extent, is transient. If you lookhard enough, there is always something to be unhappy about. But, moreimportantly, do I come to work to be “happy” in the truest sense? If Ithink hard, the answer is “No”. Happiness is something you find withfamily, friends, maybe a close circle of colleagues who have becomefriends. What you come to work for is to earn, build a reputation, satisfyyour ambitions, be appreciated for your work ethics, face challenges andget the job done. So, the next time you are tempted to move, ask yourself why are you moving and what are you moving into? Some questions are:

* Am I ready and capable of handling the new responsibility? If yes, whatcould be the possible reasons my current company has not offered me thesame responsibility?
* Who are the people who currently handle this responsibility in thecurrent and new company? Am I as good as the best among them?
* As the new job offer has a different profile, why have I not given thecurrent company the option to offer me this profile?
* Why is the new company offering me the job? Do they want me for myskills, or is there an ulterior motive?

An honest answer to these will eventually decide where you go in yourcareer- to the top of the pile in the long term (at the cost of short-termblips) or to become another average employee who gets lost with time inthe wilderness?So decide before changing your job!!!!!!!!!

DATED : 27/07/05

Ritesh Kapoor had been working in the steel sector for close to five years now. He had stuck to the same company in Delhi over these last few months. Recently he was offered an opening with an oil retail giant. At the same time he was due for a promotion in his present employment.

He was in a dilemma regarding which offer to take up. Which of the two offers to take up? If he took up the ‘oil’ offer he would be posted to his hometown, be with his family and take up a challenging job. If he continued with his present company, he would be a senior, be comfortable in a ‘known’ environment, continue to maintain his present lifestyle and be close to friends he had made over the last few years.

Kapoor chose the first option as he felt that his family was the most important thing in his life and he would consider himself lucky if he could be back with them.

A B-school finance graduate, Amitabh Sen landed a job in a UN organization, as a research associate. “I always wanted to work in a bank,” he says. So when ICICI offered him a job as officer, retail liability group, he submitted his resignation without a second thought, though many people would never let go of a job with the UN.

“I knew what I wanted to do all my life so I never had any insecurity about this switch. I knew I would be happier and content in with my new job profile” says Sen.

Choosing ‘that’ specific offer out of many is not an easy task. One should try to think and analyse strategically to reach to a final selection. ‘Money’ should not be the driving factor if it is a ‘career’ you want and not just a mere job switch.

Impulsive selection should be avoided as one cannot revert to earlier times. Playing games with your job profile is certainly not advisable.

Experts say that the most important factors which cross the mind of an average employee before making that crucial selection are brand name, job profile, location, compensation, other benefits, peer group and an opportunity to grow.
Factors to be kept in mind before making that ‘final’ selection:

Brand – The image of the organisation is a very important factor; it is always advisable to work with a growing organisation. If you care for a switch in the future try moving to a known ‘brand’ as it will add weight to your resume and put you in a favoured position.

Compensation – Money is the biggest motivating factor. One should be amply rewarded for his or her inputs, and assessment is done on the basis of peer group’s status. One should also keep in mind the cost of living. For example, it is no use moving from say Meerut to Mumbai for just a Rs 5,000 hike. Factoring in living expenses, especially if one moves to another city, is a must before one decides to switch jobs.

Job profile – One should always choose a profile that is interesting and challenging. Try to get as much information on the job profile. Nobody wants to move to a new position and find boredom creeping in. This will have an adverse effect on your performance levels.

Office environment – This is a sum total of aspects such as office hours, dress code, work space, co-workers, employers, organisation’s interests and beliefs. Be clear if you want to be part of the prospective organisation’s work ethos. Otherwise you might stand out like a sore thumb.

Benefits – This includes the variable part of the compensation such as bonus, incentives, group insurance and pension plans, medical allowance, conveyance allowance, etc. At the outset one should have a clear idea of what the new company offers. Your new employers will consider you extremely unprofessional if you join and start haggling about benefits.

Growth prospects – This is one of the most important aspects when you are looking for a job switch. It is calculated both from the view of growing inside the present organisation as well as in terms of a probable job switch in future. Check where you will be five years hence. Does your new organisation have a clear earmarked promotion channel? Will you be likely to be given additional responsibilities? Will your work in your new organisation add value to your CV? These are some of the questions you should ask yourself before you sign on t he dotted line.

Says the HR manager of a leading BPO, “Although compensation is a driving factor, paramount is the brand name.” He goes on to add, “Financial compensation is not the only reason for people to switch. They should aspire for something more. Managers in your new organisation should treat you well, and the office culture is what matters”.

In today’s age very few people look out for long-term stability in one organisation. For today’s young people constant growth is what pushes them on. Many people opt for jobs which will help them in carving out a ‘growing career path’. The present company should be strong enough to open arenas for offers from other big brands in future.

Vijay Kranti, GM, corporate communication, Essar says, “One should go for a company which offers professional growth prospects and offers challenges.” He adds, “I would choose to work for lesser compensation with a good brand as it certainly is a huge motivating factor.”

An employee after deciding to switch should inform the present company of the same, any sort of sourness should be avoided. Also, he should make the organisations from where he had other offers know that he would not be joining them. After all one never know ones next destination!!!!

Let me start from the scratch.Everyone starts his career from the lowest and this is true in each and every field be it IT or Non-IT field.So consider that you are in the software field so it means that you will start your career from the post of Software Trainee and may reach to some height in your career as the time keeps on progressing.Now the question which arises in mind is why a fresh graduate or post grad needs to start from the bottom of the career ladder and climb upwards.

Can’t he not directly go to the top of the ladder in one shot.The answer to this question is very simple and it is a straightforward “NO”.So what does a person gain when he starts climbing this ladder.As you have guessed it is “Experience”.So what does this complicated terminology “Experience” mean?Seems very difficult.Isnt it.With Experience,the person gains knowledge about the various business aspects as well as his brain keeps on maturing each and every second.This knowledge growth will help him reach higher positions in his career and the maturity will help him scale new heights in his career.

So,now the question arises is whether every “Experienced” person is “Mature” or does he have enough knowledge about the business.The answer to this question is again “NO”.That is why we have only one person like Bill Gates,Larry Ellison.They have used their experience in the enhancement of business by study of the various aspects of business.So,who accompanies them in various decision making activities.It is the Management Level of the company.Now what is this “MANAGEMENT”.It is proper execution of your activities.Every person is a Manager in his day to day life since he/she has to do various activities everyday but not every person who is a Manager is a “Successful Manager”.One one hand we have people like Vivek Paul(Vice Chairman of Wipro) who has helped Wipro scale new heights in all businesses be it IT or BPO.What could be the reason for his success.Does he have his own “Management Mantras” which help him?The anwser should again be “NO”. So, what qualities does a Successful Manager have?The simple answer is all qualities of a Manager plus some other qualities.

I would list down some of the qualities,which have come to my mind after few years of IT experience.Experience is always “Few” since everyday we have something new to learn and would appreciate the contibution of the readers of this article towards this area.

Manager is a normal Human Being(and he is also bound to make mistakes) and whatever he/she says is not always TRUE and so, it is very important for the listener to analyse his/her statements.
Conclusion :
A “Good Manager” should be a “Good Listener”.

Since people work under him so it is his reposnsibility that every person in the team has some work irrespective to the quality of the work and he/she should not be on “Bench”(IT terminoloty to refer to a person who is idle).
Conclusion :
It is the sole responsibility of the Manager for the assignment of work to the various members of the team.

We expect only things to be said about us.Whereas when we have people working with us(or may be under our leadership),we should expect people to come out with our bad qualities as well.
The Manager should be on the look out to improve this own managerial skills as well as the attitues and gelling between his team members.During this course there is a high possibility that people in the team may come out with his weaknesses.So,in short Manager should be Open Minded and should take things in the correct way.

There is always a difference between people who work and people who pretend to work.
He should keep not only his eyes open as well as his ears open since,everywhere we have people who work and some(or should i say most),who pretend to work.

Some issues need discussions whereas some can solved without even stepping into the Discussion Room.How many people do we see who are active as well as attentive in meetings?Many people pop off all the elements from their Mind Stack(Could not help myself from using Technical Language) when they enter the Discussion Room.
It is Man-ager’s responsibility to forsee whether meeting is required to get the solution for a particular issue else only mockery will happen inside the room resulting in wastage of time.So,call for meetings only when required.