J Wolfgang Goerlich's thoughts on Information Security
Wired: DevOps isn't a job, but it is still important

By wolfgang. 22 May 2015 07:10

"Traditionally, companies have at least two main technical teams. There are the programmers, who code the software that the company sells, or that its employees use internally. And then there are the information technology operations staff, who handle everything from installing network gear to maintaining the servers that run those programmers’ code. The two teams only communicate when it’s time for the operations team to install a new version of the programmers’ software, or when things go wrong. That’s the way it was at Munder Capital Management when J. Wolfgang Goerlich joined the Midwestern financial services company in 2005."

Read the rest at: http://www.wired.com/2015/05/devops-isnt-job-still-important/

Tags:

Team management

Finding And Using A Mentor

By wolfgang. 3 January 2015 10:30

Forbes posted several good tips on finding and using mentors. I thought I would add my experience from the information security perspective. You can read the original article here: How To Find And Use A Mentor.

"1. Examine yourself. Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. Make a list of goals and objectives. How will you use a mentor? To find an internship? To help you hone your presentation skills? To advise you on your career path?"

Information security is a broad field with several specialities. Often, the first step of mentoring someone is for us to decide what they even want to learn. Doing the digging and researching what areas are of interest will save time for more hands-on mentorship.

"2. Decide what you want in a mentor. What are the qualities you seek in a mentor? Try to envision the ideal person. Is it Oprah? If so, why? Figure out what characteristics you're looking for, perhaps a particular wealth of knowledge or set of skills."

Information security is a wide community with several specialists. Finding the right person to provide guidance goes along way. Look for areas where they have researched, worked, or exceled. Match their strengths to your needs.

"3. Cast a wide net. Network. Use social media like LinkedIn. Parents and their pals can prove especially useful. Don't forget professional associations and your schools' career offices."

For our field, make use of Twitter and IRC. Find the person, do your homework (osint style), and get an introduction.

"4. Be specific when you reach out. Ask for something specific, like a 20-minute meeting over coffee to learn about the person's career path, or a short desk-side meeting to ask advice about internships. Use these meetings to build rapport before you make requests for more time."

"5. Go after more than one mentor. One person may help you land an internship in your desired field; another may help you see the big picture of your unfolding career."

Rinse and repeat the above steps, filling in the gaps in your knowledge and network. 

"6. Offer something in return. Are you an expert at social networking? Offer your services and ideas generously and frequently."

With information security, it is less about sharing social networking tips and more about building on a body of research. Most of the mentors you will reach out to have an active project list, with little time to explore. By offering to do the work, you help them by progressing the idea while you help yourself by learning.

"7. Be an active protégé. Show enthusiasm for your mentor's help. Express gratitude."

Don't over do this one. I have had mentees go too far in the other direction, to the point of fawning. The ideal state is to show you are active and engaged, without overwhelming your mentor's inbox.

"8. Follow up. Even after you've landed that internship or job, don't let your communication with your mentor lapse. Keep her apprised of your progress."

It has been said that 80% of success is simply showing up. I believe this. The number one mistake I see from newcomers to the field and from people seeking mentors is that they simply do not show up. Do not have one great conversation and then let the idea go cold. Do not have a great couple weeks and then disappear. Most people do. But you are different. If you want to make it in this field, you have to show up, be steady, and see projects thru to the end.

 


Tags:

General | Team management

Friday Books and Talks 06/06/2014

By wolfgang. 6 June 2014 21:53

How the Best Leaders Lead
by Brian Tracy

In How the Best Leaders Lead, Brian Tracy reveals the strategies he teaches top executives to achieve astounding results in difficult markets against determined competition. You will learn how to set clear goals and objectives for yourself and others, set priorities and focus on key tasks, solve problems faster and make better decisions, determine the ideal leadership style for any situation, motivate your people, and develop an exciting future vision for your business.

The Coaching Manager
by Joseph R. Weintraub, James M. Hunt

When managers communicate a genuine interest in helping rather than evaluating their employees, they create opportunities for everyone to learn. Managers who try to help employees learn and become more productive in the process. In The Coaching Manager, James Hunt and Joseph Weintraub introduce an easy-to-implement developmental coaching model based on their extensive work with thousands of managers, executives and MBA students. The goal is for managers to help employees learn to be more productive on a day-to-day basis. This model encourages employees to take greater responsibility for their learning and development while forging a healthy relationship between manager and employee.

 

How sampling transformed music
By Mark Ronson

Sampling isn't about "hijacking nostalgia wholesale," says Mark Ronson. It's about inserting yourself into the narrative of a song while also pushing that story forward. In this mind-blowingly original talk, watch the DJ scramble 15 TED Talks into an audio-visual omelette, and trace the evolution of "La Di Da Di," Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick's 1984 hit that has been reimagined for every generation since.

Comics that ask "what if?"
By Randall Munroe

Web cartoonist Randall Munroe answers simple what-if questions ("what if you hit a baseball moving at the speed of light?") using math, physics, logic and deadpan humor. In this charming talk, a reader’s question about Google's data warehouse leads Munroe down a circuitous path to a hilariously over-detailed answer — in which, shhh, you might actually learn something. "And I love calculating these kinds of things, and it's not that I love doing the math. I do a lot of math, but I don't really like math for its own sake. What I love is that it lets you take some things that you know, and just by moving symbols around on a piece of paper, find out something that you didn't know that's very surprising. And I have a lot of stupid questions, and I love that math gives the power to answer them sometimes."

What ants teach us about the brain, cancer and the Internet
By Deborah Gordon

Ecologist Deborah Gordon studies ants wherever she can find them — in the desert, in the tropics, in her kitchen ... In this fascinating talk, she explains her obsession with insects most of us would happily swat away without a second thought. She argues that ant life provides a useful model for learning about many other topics, including disease, technology and the human brain.

Tags:

Team management

Friday Books and Talks 05/30/2014

By wolfgang. 30 May 2014 16:51

Change the Culture, Change the Game
by Roger Connors, Tom Smith

Roger Connors and Tom Smith show how leaders can achieve record-breaking results by quickly and effectively shaping their organizational culture to capitalize on their greatest asset-their people. Change the Culture, Change the Game joins their classic book, The Oz Principle, and their recent bestseller, How Did That Happen?, to complete the most comprehensive series ever written on workplace accountability. Based on an earlier book, Journey to the Emerald City, this fully revised installment captures what the authors have learned while working with the hundreds of thousands of people on using organizational culture as a strategic advantage.

Open Leadership
by Charlene Li

"Be Open, Be Transparent, Be Authentic" are the current leadership mantras-but companies often push back. Business is premised on the concept of control and yet the new world order demands openness-leaders do not know how to be open and be in control. This must-have resource will help the modern leader understand how to lead in the new open world-where blogging, twittering, facebooking, and digging are becoming the norm. the author lays out the steps that leaders must take to transform their organizations and themselves into being "open" -and exactly what that will mean.

 

Color blind or color brave?
by Mellody Hobson

The subject of race can be very touchy. As finance executive Mellody Hobson says, it's a "conversational third rail." But, she says, that's exactly why we need to start talking about it. In this engaging, persuasive talk, Hobson makes the case that speaking openly about race — and particularly about diversity in hiring — makes for better businesses and a better society.

 

Tags:

Team management

Friday Books and Talks 05/23/2014

By wolfgang. 23 May 2014 19:10

Tribal Leadership
by Dave Logan, John King, Halee Fischer-Wright

Within each corporation are anywhere from a few to hundreds of separate tribes. In Tribal Leadership, Dave Logan, John King, and Halee Fischer-Wright demonstrate how these tribes develop—and show you how to assess them and lead them to maximize productivity and growth. A business management book like no other, Tribal Leadership is an essential tool to help managers and business leaders take better control of their organizations by utilizing the unique characteristics of the tribes that exist within.

 

Tribal leadership
By David Logan

David Logan talks about the five kinds of tribes that humans naturally form — in schools, workplaces, even the driver's license bureau. By understanding our shared tribal tendencies, we can help lead each other to become better individuals.

Why good leaders make you feel safe
By Simon Sinek

What makes a great leader? Management theorist Simon Sinek suggests, it’s someone who makes their employees feel secure, who draws staffers into a circle of trust. But creating trust and safety — especially in an uneven economy — means taking on big responsibility.


Tags:

Team management

Friday Books and Talks 05/16/2014

By wolfgang. 17 May 2014 12:58

Multipliers
by Liz Wiseman, Greg McKeown

Are you a genius or a genius maker? A diminisher or a multiplier? In this executive book summary, you will learn the difference between these two leadership styles, how to become a multiplier of talent and people and how multiplying can have a resoundingly positive and profitable effect on your organization.

A thought-provoking, accessible, and essential exploration of why some leaders (“Diminishers”) drain capability and intelligence from their teams, while others (“Multipliers”) amplify it to produce better results. Including a foreword by Stephen R. Covey, as well the five key disciplines that turn smart leaders into genius makers, Multipliers is a must-read for everyone from first-time managers to world leaders.

 

What it takes to be a great leader
By Roselinde Torres

There are many leadership programs available today, from 1-day workshops to corporate training programs. But chances are, these won't really help. In this clear, candid talk, Roselinde Torres describes 25 years observing truly great leaders at work, and shares the three simple but crucial questions would-be company chiefs need to ask to thrive in the future.

The key to success? Grit.
By Angela Lee Duckworth

Duckworth, the recipient of a 2013 MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant, may be most known for her work in studying the role of grit, rather than intelligence, in predicting success in students. But this talk is also a worthy reminder for leaders of the attributes they should look for in people -- perseverance, self-control and sustained interest in long-term goals -- as well as that they should work on in themselves.

 

Tags:

Team management

Friday Books and Talks 05/09/2014

By wolfgang. 9 May 2014 12:46

Mojo
by Marshall Goldsmith, Mark Reiter

Mojo comes from the moment we do something that is purposeful, powerful, and positive, and the rest of the world recognizes it. In his follow up to the New York Times bestseller What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, #1 executive coach Marshall Goldsmith lays out the ways that we can get — and keep — our professional and personal Mojo.

360 Degrees of Influence
by Harrison Monarth

The best leaders influence those who are below and above them, as well as people external to the organization, such as customers and partners. In 360 Degrees of Influence, Harrison Monarth provides advice on how to gain the trust and respect of those around you and how to expand your influence well beyond your immediate environment. Providing valuable insight into human emotion and behavior, Monarth reveals the secrets to knowing what people are thinking and feeling — maybe better than they do.

 

What makes us feel good about our work?
By Dan Ariely

What motivates us to work? Contrary to conventional wisdom, it isn't just money. But it's not exactly joy either. It seems that most of us thrive by making constant progress and feeling a sense of purpose. Behavioral economist Dan Ariely presents two eye-opening experiments that reveal our unexpected and nuanced attitudes toward meaning in our work. (Filmed at TEDxRiodelaPlata.)

Everyday leadership
By Drew Dudley

We have all changed someone’s life — usually without even realizing it. In this funny talk, Drew Dudley calls on all of us to celebrate leadership as the everyday act of improving each other’s lives. (Filmed at TEDxToronto.)

 


Tags:

Team management

Friday Books and Talks 04/18/2014

By wolfgang. 18 April 2014 11:49

Great Work, Great Career
by Jennifer Colosimo, Stephen R. Covey

Do you have a good career, a mediocre career, or a great career? How do you know? And how do your create a great career? The most respected business thinker of our time, Dr. Stephen R. Covey, and change consultant Jennifer Colosimo offer a complete handbook for anyone seeking answers.

"The energy you invest in regularly and frequently building your village will pay dividends not only in advancing your career, but also in personal satisfaction. You will get into the habit of service, which is the foundation of a great career. With a synergy mindset, you will learn from the best people in your life. And when you need them, they’ll be there for you because you have been there for them."

"The village you build might ultimately be your greatest career achievement. It might even become the source of great new advances in understanding your field. It’s a natural principle that you cannot achieve anything truly worthwhile alone –– at least not in the world of work."

 

Tags:

Team management

Keys to a high-performing IT department

By wolfgang. 18 September 2013 14:51

mrc's Cup of Joe Blog included my minimum viable mantra in their recent blog post:

6 keys to a high-performing IT department
http://www.mrc-productivity.com/blog/2013/09/6-keys-to-a-high-performing-it-department/

“Approach everything with a startup mentality,” says J Wolfgang Goerlich, VP of Consulting Services for VioPoint. “By that, I mean, seek to answer the following two questions: what drives value and what keeps the light on. I suggest adopting a minimum viable strategy for keeping the lights on. By satisfying the requirements without spending too much time, you make space to deliver value. Spend most of your time and effort on what really matters, what really drives value, what really makes a difference. In doing so, you can deliver outstanding results to your manager, your stakeholders, and your organization.”

Click thru and read the article, including the comment from Michael Stephenson. Lots of good advice for optimizing your team and department.

Tags:

Team management

Wolf in the news

By wolfgang. 19 July 2013 09:45

It has been a crazy week. Here are the highlights:

VioPoint released a case study we did on SDLC. "This was more than a point-and-click assessment, as it was a top-down analysis of both code and infrastructure," Goerlich explained. "VioPoint’s team engaged my team and my third-party developers at every stage of the project and the deliverables were on time, to spec, and well-polished."

InformationWeek published a list of 10 IT Leaders to Follow on Twitter. Abizer Rasheed, president of managed services provider Effortless 24-7, enjoys Goerlich's mix of IT expertise and his involvement in the IT scene in the Midwest, where Rasheed works. "Wolfgang shares a unique mixture of insights, tech articles, and local happenings in the Michigan tech scene," Rasheed says. "He has a wry sense of humor and an ear towards dialog, intertwining humorous anecdotes alongside with his hard-edge technical posts. Wolfgang's feed is one-of-a-kind among the many IT leaders on Twitter and I find it highly valuable."

Tripwire highlighted InfoSec’s rising stars and hidden gems: the defenders. "Goerlich is described as a superb leader who mixes his deep interest and knowledge of technology and security with his management experience and business understanding, as evidenced by his 2012 InfoWorld Technology Leadership and his 2008 IDG Best Practices in Infrastructure Management awards. Goerlich is also a well known podcaster, avid Twitterer, and a co-organizer for events like the BSidesDetroit."

I thank Tripwire, InformationWeek, and VioPoint for the write-ups. It is gratifying to see the work my team does recognized. I wish I could say we are taking the weekend off. But truth be told, upgrades wait for no one, and this will be a working weekend.

Cheers,

Wolfgang

Tags:

Team management

    Log in