Converting a Budget Deficit Into an Innovation Surplus – USPS

I’ve been meaning to write the blog, “I Left My Brain in San Francisco” for the last 2 weeks. Unfortunately, without a brain, it’s pretty hard to write a blog!  And I say that I left my brain in San Fran, because it was blown away by what I learned, saw and heard at the ServiceNow #Know14 conference.  What a great event they have grown into.  The line-up of presenters, topics, labs… it’s really a well orchestrated week, filled with learning and fun – two of my favorite things….

One of the BEST presentations was by the folks at the United States Postal Service, titled Converting a Budget Deficit Into an Innovation Surplus.

The title certainly caught my attention, and it sounded like it might be a little different from the other presentations, so I attended.  And man, am I glad that I did!

I am so impressed with their Service organization, and how in tune they are with their stakeholders and customers, that I reached out and asked if they would re-present for ITSM Academy’s June webinar… and they said YES 😉

So I am very happy to say;

Please join us for a complimentary webinar: Converting a Budget Deficit Into  an Innovation Surplus on Thursday, June 19th at 11am (Eastern) – Register 

Presenters: John Edgar, VP of IT and Kathleen A. Warnaar, Manager, Performance Achievement, United States Postal Service.

EXCLUSIVE WEBINAR BANNER June 2014“It’s no secret that the United States Postal Service operates under a stringent budget deficit, but what may surprise you is that the IT organization has converted that deficit into an innovation surplus. Join USPS, John Edgar, VP of IT and Kathleen Warnaar, Manager, Performance Achievement, as they discuss how they’ve been able to align IT as an enabler in support of a cross-organizational initiative focused on service, revenue and value transformation. Employing new strategies and approaches in service definitions and delivery, IT is successfully achieving operational efficiencies, cost savings and customer satisfaction. John and Kathleen will discuss how IT is reinvesting the savings delivered by their ITSM initiatives to drive additional innovations and automation across the enterprise.”

Have questions you want included? Post them on Twitter; #askITSM.

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Learning!

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Full Circle – from ESM to ITIL and Back Again

I guess it means that I’m getting old… I can look back over my career now and see many things coming full circle.

As example, we just celebrated our 10th anniversary here at ITSM Academy.  Of course, we are much larger, with more robust processes in place (and 30,000+ Alumni!) But, with the introduction of our new Agile Service Management Line of Training, there are many parallels to when we originally launched our ITSM/ITIL Line of Training.

Earlier this month, I was fortunate to attend the ServiceNow Knowledge14 Conference, and that’s where it really hit me.  Several people talked to me about “Enterprise Service Management” and how that title needed to replace “ITSM”.  I don’t disagree, but it struck me as so funny.  10.5 years ago, I was an ESM Practice Manager, but got so much feedback that people didn’t know what that meant.  My favorite was, “Why would you call yourself that when your are the ITSM Practice Manager?” Based on that conversation, I did something as unethical as it gets here in LisaLand…. I went onto LinkedIn and changed my job title…(insert shocked face here!).

So what does this mean, this movement to (as one presenter called it) – Innovating Beyond ITIL: Enterprise Service Management.  Well, quite simply, it’s where we should have been 15 years ago.  The focus of ITSM / ITIL / ESM – whatever you want to call it – has to be outside of IT.  The focus of any successful (insert your letters of choice here) Program needs to be on;

  • the services we provide
  • the stakeholders we provide them to
  • the cultural change that needs to shift our IT organization into a service provider

One of the KPMG presenters said, “Innovate on ITIL, but don’t emphasize the IT in  ITIL”. Which will leave some feeling IL – LOL (sorry, couldn’t help it!)

KPMG also spoke a lot about Global Business Services.  I did a little follow up reading and, “Global Business Services (GBS) business operating model is poised to replace standalone outsourcing and shared services…with around 60 percent of the organizations embracing GBS over the next three years. The research also predicted that expenditure on external GBS is expected to nearly double-up to reach $73 billion in 2017 as against US$ 40 billion in 2013.”

arrows_tail_spin_multi_colored_400_wht_9654And to take us full circle now on this blog….I think, we are back to where we should have started 15 years ago.

I also think that getting older gives you some perspective that makes life more interesting…. but that will go full circle too.  One day, we won’t be able to remember any of this anyway.

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Circling!

DevOps: Moving Beyond Early Adopters to Pragmatic Acceptance

Join us for a complimentary webinar: DevOps: Moving Beyond Early Adopters to Pragmatic Acceptance on Thursday, May 15th at 11am (Eastern) – Register

Presenter: Alan Shimel,Editor-in-Chief, DevOps.com

EXCLUSIVE WEBINAR BANNER_May2014

Just about every technology trend over the last 30 years has followed a similar pattern. Originally championed by a dedicated core of enthusiasts, it gathers adherents among those willing to live at the bleeding edge. Over time champions emerge who seek to spread the word on the benefits of the technology. These visionaries eventually come to a chasm that separates early adopters from the vast majority of the mainstream. Some technologies cross the chasm, others fall in.

DevOps is now at precipice of the chasm. It appears to have the momentum to make the leap. Why? How will it affect you? Separating the fact from the hype, examining the truth behind the myth, learn how DevOps is not a threat to IT jobs, but can be the greatest catalyst of improved performance that we have seen in IT for a long time

Have questions you want included? Post them on Twitter; #askITSM.

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Learning!

New Courses at ITSM Academy – Scrum and DevOps

itsmacademy_smallWe have been working (tirelessly!) on our newest Line of Training – Agile Service Management®, and are continuing to add new courses to our portfolio.  We are thrilled to announce the following courses:

  • DevOps Overview – 4 hour virtual class, introducing concepts of DevOps. February 28 (with many more options to come), virtual classroom.
  • DevOps Fundamentals – 2 day certification course, provides attendees the ability to formulate a high-level strategy and action plan for adopting DevOps in their organization.  April 7-10, virtual classroom.
  • Certified ScrumMaster – 2 day certification course, which we are delivering in partnership with a leading Rep of the Scrum Alliance.  March 17-18 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
  • Agile Service Management: Applying Scrum to Process Design – 5 hour virtual class. Coming soon.

For more information on these courses, or to register, please visit our website.

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Learning!

Go Outside and Play

As I sit here typing this on the “computer that lives in my purse” I think again, “I’m so glad I live in the future”.  I consider myself a pretty Early Adopter of technology (and social media) and I really appreciate how much it has enriched my job.  And how so many other tech advancements have enriched my personal life.

But, when I look at my friend’s 3.5-year old daughter, who has had her own Kindle since last Christmas (13 months!) it makes me thankful that I am of the “last outside generation”.

We HAD to go outside to play, there was nothing else to do.  We only had 3 channels on the TV!  I grew up with parents who placed value in saving for college over buying us fancy toys.  So, while there was access to gaming in my teenage years, that wasn’t an option in my family.

mybikeMy childhood was filled with dare-devil stunts on our bikes (look ma’ no helmets), pick-up ball games in the empty lot across the street from the house, jumping on Kelly’s trampoline, swimming in the pool until we were prunes, and laying out in the backyard with Crisco for my “suntan lotion” and lemons washed into my hair.  On rainy days, it was cards, Monopoly, treasure hunts and books.

Those “non-tech” activities taught me skills that I’m not sure how many kids are learning today.  Including, but certainly not limited to;

  • Fear nothing
  • Use your imagination, you can create any world you want
  • Read books, you can escape to any world you want
  • Organize games – if you are enthusiastic, your friends will follow you anywhere
  • etc. etc.

I can’t even begin to speculate how the hours, and hours (and hours!) of Monopoly and strategy games assist me in running our business….

Alright, I acknowledge that this somewhat sentimental ranting is possibly a by-product of getting older…but I know this, I am so very thankful that “go outside and play” was one of my Mom’s top mantras. (Followed very closely by, “did you put your toys away?” and the perennial, “have you made your bed?”)

And I’m glad that it’s stayed with me.  That I still really enjoy swimming in the ocean, walking on the beach, a pick-up game, riding my bike (and scooter), playing cards, reading books, etc. etc.

So if you are feeling stagnant, unimaginative, or just tired / old, here is my advice: “Go Outside and Play”!

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Playing

LisaLand

Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) Round Table

CSM Round Table

Join us for a complimentary webinar: Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) Round Table on Thursday, February 20th at 11am (Eastern) – Register

Everyone is talking about Agile and Scrum. But how does Agile apply to service management and DevOps?

Spend some time with two of our ITSM Academy Certified ScrumMasters, Donna Knapp and Jayne Groll, as they share their insights and advice on how Agile can improve IT’s velocity and Time to Value.

Have questions you want included? Post them on Twitter; #askITSMscrum @ITSMAcademy.

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Learning!

2013 The Year of Innovation

At the end of 2012, we declared that 2013 would be “The Year of Innovation” here at ITSM Academy. And I’m proud to say it was!

This year, we’ve concentrated on 2 large projects.
1. my.itsmacademy.com – our Learner Portal
2. GAME ON! An Interactive Learning Experience

fill_the_seat.jpgAs I wrote about a few weeks back, part of the reason we were able to accomplish standing up both of these in a single years was by attaining our Certified ScrumMaster certs along the way. We have morphed from a standard Waterfall project methodology, using Agile instead. That wasn’t an easy transition.

Focusing on Shippable Products and running in 2 week sprints has been great. This has really helped us with prioritization. In an organization our size, self organizing teams makes sense, but appointing 3 individuals to be Scrum Master, Product Owner and then Team Members, isn’t always realistic. So we’ve taken the best of what we learned from Scrum, and have adapted to fit our needs.

An exciting by-product of this, is that it really helped us focus on our next Line Of Training – Agile ITSM.  We have 4 new classes which we are adding early 2014:

  • DevOps Overview – 4 hour virtual class, introducing concepts of DevOps. January 24 and February 28 (with many more options to come), virtual classroom.
  • DevOps Fundamentals – 2 day certification course, this course provides attendees the ability to formulate a high-level strategy and action plan for adopting DevOps in their organization.  April 7-10, virtual classroom.
  • Certified ScrumMaster – 2 day certification course, which we are delivering in partnership with a leading Rep of the Scrum Alliance.  March 17-18 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
  • Agile Service Management: Applying Scrum to Process Design – 5 hour virtual class. Coming soon.

So, with our 10th anniversary behind us (how is THAT possible?  Oh, Jayne Groll wrote a great blog about our first ten years…) we continue to grow, morph and change.  Which I’ll be honest, is something we are proud of 😉

Until your next trip to LisaLand…Happy Innovating!

LisaLand