Increasing your expertise

An expert is someone who has succeeded in making decisions and judgements simpler through knowing what to pay attention to and what to ignore.”
Edward de Bono

In what ways can you increase your expertise as an OctopOSS wrangler?

The following methods will help guide you:

  • Start with the data. The OctopOSS‘s data sets will always give insights into how the system works. This includes
    – understanding the raw data coming from the data sources
    – cross referencing that data against vendor manuals
    – understanding the product’s table structures and where the raw data can go
    – understanding the manipulation of the raw data into your OSS‘s data structures and customer naming conventions
  • Focus on Delivery. There are so many ways that the OctopOSS can side-track you or build road-blocks. Constantly seek ways to break down the road-blocks on your part of the project or the project in full
  • Build your own Systems and constantly seek ways of refining and improving what works for you
  • Learn from the Experts – but make sure you listen. You always learn far more by listening than you do by telling
  • Brainstorm and Innovate – there are so many ways of tackling an OctopOSS and sharing the insights of others will almost always enhance your strategy
  • Diversify – the most valuable OctopOSS wranglers are the ones who have knowledge across multiple domains (eg networks, technologies, application suites) because they are able to see the big picture and pull the pieces together. If your job restricts you to a single domain, make it your goal to seek to expand your knowledge and expertise across other domains
  • Get outside your Comfort Zone – an OSS has too many moving parts to know everything across all domains. Following on from the previous point, growth and diversity are the keys to increasing your expertise. If you don’t love change, then OSS isn’t the industry for you. Sometimes you will have to take on projects that are in other locations or across technologies that you’re not comfortable with but they’re often the best way to grow. Being on a small project team in a remote country will force team members to do tasks that are outside their comfort zone. It was on these types of projects that I had the opportunity to do tasks that would’ve never been asked of me on a large project team
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