What It Takes To Make IoT Implementation A Success – Robert Plant & Cherie Topham

2.jpg

Organizations around the globe understand the importance of IoT. In fact, in a recent Forbes Insights/Hitachi survey of more than 500 executives worldwide, over 90% said IoT will be important to the future of their business. What’s more, of all emerging technologies, executives said IoT would be the most critical, ranking it above others like artificial intelligence and robotics.

While executives acknowledge the importance of IoT, 49% remain in the early stages of planning or are only operating pilot programs. We spoke with John Magee, Hitachi Vantara’s vice president of product and solutions marketing, to get his perspective on this state of development and how organizations can make IoT a larger part of their strategy and operations going forward.

If an executive is looking to invest in IoT and understand the economics behind it, what does he or she need to know?

Most organizations are looking to IoT projects to either improve operational efficiency or drive new revenue streams. A lot of organizations are seeking to use the data they can get from IoT sensors and connectivity to provide better visibility and help them understand what’s going on in their operations. For product companies, they’re often looking to optimize how their products are being manufactured or used, and to offer new data-driven services with those products.

The goal for most of these companies is to transform the way they operate and the way they compete. For business leaders looking to take advantage of IoT, the most important thing is to begin with the business outcome goals first and then determine what data IoT can provide that can help deliver those outcomes. It’s the new data that delivers the business value. So that should be the starting point for any project. Then you can work back from there to the technology required to meet the objective.

For example, manufacturers might want to understand why quality issues are creeping into one of their manufacturing lines but not the other. Logistics companies may want to understand the location of parts and deliveries to optimize scheduling. Product companies may want to sell new value-added software services that help customers get more value from their products. Whatever the goal, by understanding what data you need to collect and who needs access to it, the technology requirements will fall into place more easily and you won’t over- or underspend for success.

When executives are thinking about what data is most important to achieving their desired outcomes, what do they need to know? How should they approach this?

IoT is essentially a rich source of new business data. Data that comes from machines and devices, and from the spaces and environments those machines operate in. In many situations, just having access to real-time data about what’s going on—in a manufacturing plant, on a remote oil rig or in a city train station—can be transformative. In most situations, though, some analysis of the data is going to be needed to gain the insights that lead to business value.

1.jpg

This is where technologies like big data analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence come into play. Analytics is the key to not just understanding what is happening but also learning and getting smarter so that your IoT solutions can predict when a problem will occur or find the root cause of product quality issues that would have been unsolvable without analyzing the mountains of data that IoT can deliver.

The right way to think about IoT is as an extension of the business analytics that your organization is probably already doing in other areas. At the end of the day, IoT is a means to accessing and interpreting more data. And data management, data integration and data science are all key enabling technologies for IoT, just as they are for most other areas of business today.

One new twist on IoT data that differs from traditional business data is the idea of a “digital twin.” The digital twin is the software representation of a physical device, such as a pacemaker, an elevator or a dump truck. As data streams in from the physical device, it is collected and stored in the corresponding digital twin. The digital twin knows everything about that asset: where it was manufactured, how it has been operated, when it was last serviced.

By using software to analyze hundreds or even thousands of these digital twins, data scientists can build powerful analytic models that can optimize the corresponding physical assets. Organizations are using this approach to enhance asset uptime and performance, extend the useful life of critical assets and optimize maintenance and operations.

Once you’ve aggregated data into a single version of the truth and are drawing conclusions, how can companies best integrate that information into broader networks?

There’s a sort of stairway to value in many IoT scenarios. The first step of the stairway is the physical devices themselves. The second step is the operations around those devices. And the third step is the business processes and ecosystem around those operations.

Think of a manufacturing plant. If you use sensors on critical plant equipment, you can get data that can help you operate that equipment more effectively. If you collect enough data, you can even start to predict when it will fail so you can service it before that happens. So that’s the next step – using the data insights about the equipment into optimizing your maintenance and repair operations.

But that data can also be useful at the next step in the stairway, which is how your supply chain responds to requirements for parts or materials being delivered based on the performance of the equipment and operations in the factory. The more data you have, the more visibility you have, and the more opportunity to optimize every part of the operation. Sort of like air traffic control for the factory.

This stairway, or hierarchy, of value—from asset to operations to business process—is one we see play out in industry after industry.

When it comes to IoT, which is a complicated endeavor, research shows that it’s best not to go at it alone. What should executives be looking for in a partner when they’re considering making this transformation?

Working with a partner who understands your industry and has a methodology to help you think through your data strategy are the real enablers for success. IoT is a hot technology right now, and it is easy to get caught up in the hype and invest in the wrong areas. Working with an experienced partner who has a pragmatic approach that starts with understanding how IoT data and analytics will drive the desired business outcome is the key to success.

If everyone who reads our articles and like it , that would be favorable if you send us your donations…THANK YOU

Advertisements

Feel More Valuable: 3 Ways to Raise Your Self-Worth – David Meltzer

1

Whether in business or your personal life, feelings of unworthiness can hamper your ability to shine. When we don’t perceive ourselves as worthy, we tend to self-sabotage and avoid going for (or asking for) what we deserve.

My good friend, entrepreneur Ed Mylett, shared an idea with me that I thought was extremely powerful. He described different things in our lives that have a thermostat: our financial success, weight and especially our self-worth.

The premise is simple. Even if your self-worth increases or decreases a few degrees, or you experience a tremendous change over time, you will eventually revert back to whatever your internal success thermostat is set at. This begs the question: “What can I do to raise my internal thermostat?”

1. Provide value and feel valuable.

The first and best way to improve your feelings of worthiness is simply to provide value to others; be kind to others as well as to your future self. Be of service, which means providing value with no expectations of receiving anything in return. It contains the requirement that you give unconditionally. Giving with expectation, as my friend Bob Proctor says, is trading and not real giving.

It’s essential to have both focus and intention on what we want, in order to get it. And it’s difficult to manifest what you want without being of service to others. Providing value by being of service creates a void that the universe will fill for you.

Giving not only makes you feel good, but this altruistic act is contagious. Giving makes you happy, makes the person who receives happy, and even those who witness giving become happier.

A study tracking 2,000 people over a five-year period, found that those who described themselves as “very happy” were the ones who volunteered 5.8 hours per month, on average. Providing value for others made those individuals feel valuable themselves.

2. Keep your promises.

Part of being of service is keeping promises that you make to yourself, as well as what you promise to others. Living up to your promises builds trust from others, and confidence in yourself, which leads to a better perspective of your worth. When you set achievable goals and put plans in place to meet them, you’ll experience a higher rate of success and simultaneously turn up your worthiness thermostat. You need goal setting (and promise keeping) to be a consistent, persistent behavior, which will then allow you to enjoy the pursuit of your potential by creating objectives and meeting them.

One of my favorite examples to demonstrate this idea involves working out. Many people try to go “all in” immediately on new exercise regimes. I take an alternative approach. I set the bar very low at the start.

The first day that I started working out, I made a promise to myself that I’d put on my workout shoes. That was it. But, that first day, not only did I put all my gear on, but I actually ended up doing 30 minutes of cardio and stretching; I felt great afterward.

The next day, I wanted to increase my progress. I set a goal to put on all my workout clothes. But, once again, I made it to the gym and overachieved even more.

By keeping simple promises like these, and then going above and beyond, you not only build confidence in yourself but also your ability to follow through. You feel good that you are an achiever, and you feel worthy and capable of even greater achievements.

3. Accountability means knowing you’re worthy.

Living with accountability is yet another way to improve your feelings of self-worth. Accountability gives you the power or control over everything in your life. Accountability means that you don’t live in a world of blame, shame or justification. Rather, you take on all challenges as an opportunity to learn and grow.

People who are accountable ask themselves two questions when those challenges arise:

  • What did I do to attract it to myself?
  • What am I supposed to learn from it?

The tendency of people to go “below the line” stems from the impulse to defend their ego. But, in reality, they’re just avoiding accountability. Going below the line is a guaranteed way to lower your thermostat.

Whenever you can, invite others to help keep you accountable. Whether it’s a spouse, a coworker or a coach, ask them to make sure that you stay on track with achieving your goals.

If you cannot find a group or someone you trust to help keep you accountable, keep track of your words and actions yourself. Journaling is an effective way to do this. Just make sure to be honest with your evaluation of your performance.

4.Raise your thermostat.

If you want to make a lasting improvement to your self-image and raise your thermostat of worthiness, embrace the principles of service, keep promises you make to yourself (as well as to others), set realistic goals that you can achieve, but keep raising the bar. Finally, take charge of your life by being accountable and living above the line of blame, shame and justification.

These strategies are well worth your time if you want to build your self-worth, feel like you are deserving, and consistently, persistently, rapidly attract the great things that are coming your way.

If everyone who reads our articles and likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure by your donations – Thank you.

 

A New Approach To Personalized Learning Reveals 3 Valuable Teaching Insights – Thomas Arnett

1.jpg

Personalized learning’s rationale has strong intuitive appeal: We can all remember feeling bored, confused, frustrated, or lost in school when our classes didn’t spark our interests or address our learning needs. But an intuitive rationale doesn’t clearly translate to effective practice. For personalized learning to actually move the needle on improving student experiences and elevating student outcomes, the question of how schools and teachers personalize is just as important as why.

So how do schools effectively personalize learning? Is it through online learning? mastery-based learning? project-based learning? exploratory learning? Each of these common approaches offers a unique dimension of “personalization.” Yet one of the most important ways to personalize learning may be easily overlooked in the quest for new and novel approaches to instruction.

Across the K–12 education landscape, teachers have by far the biggest impact on student learning and student experiences. Even in classrooms with the latest adaptive learning technology, an expert teachers’ professional intuition is still the best way to understand and address the myriad cognitive, non-cognitive, social, emotional, and academic factors that affect students’ achievement.

Additionally, one of the most valuable forms of personalization is authentic, personal relationships between students and teachers. It therefore makes sense that any school looking to offer personalized learning should not only explore new technologies and instructional practices, but also think carefully about how to increase students’ connections with great educators.

To that end, over the past year, The Clayton Christensen Institute partnered with Public Impact to study the intersection between personalized learning and school staffing. Our aim was to observe how schools might be using new staffing arrangements to better meet the individual learning needs of their students. Initially, we tapped into our knowledge of schools (via the BLU_ school directory and Public Impact’s Opportunity Culture schools) and recommendations from personalized learning thought leaders to identify schools that were working to personalize learning using both blended learning and innovative staffing arrangements.

We then narrowed our list down to eight pioneering schools and school networks—including district, charter, and private schools—whose practices we documented in a series of case studies. Our latest report, “Innovative staffing to personalize learning: How new teaching roles and blended learning help students succeed,” released last week, documents the findings from this research. Below are brief snippets on three of our most interesting insights.

Team teaching increases supportive relationships

The most common theme across the schools we studied was a shift from one teacher per classroom to teams of educators collaborating to support larger-than-normal classes. At one school, classes of 60 students learned together in a large, open learning space with three team teachers at a time for ELA and math. At another school, students spent part of their day with co-teachers and part of their day in seven- to 12-person groups supported by a teaching fellow.

At a third school, students rotated through in-class stations where they worked part of the time with a teacher and part of the time with a small group instructor. With these new staffing arrangements, schools found that having many eyes on each student helped keep students from falling through the cracks; increased students’ chances of forming a strong, positive connection with at least one adult; and decreased the odds that a student risked going through a year with just one “really bad fit” teacher.

Support staff help schools personalize through small group instruction

At the schools we studied, teaching teams included not only teachers, but also other support staff, such as tutors, teaching fellows, or small-group instructors. These support staff members played a critical role in helping the schools offer their students frequent opportunities for personalized learning in small groups. As one teacher explained, “That small group is meant to look at each student and identify their personal needs and assist them.”

3.jpg

Another teacher at a different school said that, “Sometimes tutors make awesome relationships with students, and the students can’t wait for the tutor to come for that day; so then, I use [the tutors] also to make sure that students know that they’re being watched and that they can always ask for help.” Small groups gave students individualized support and relationships that helped them see success is possible.

Blended learning complements innovative staffing

As schools used new staffing arrangements to personalize their instruction, blended learning gave them increased flexibility in how to best use their educators’ time and talents. By letting online learning provide some instruction, educator teams could focus more on coaching students and addressing their individual needs instead of worrying about covering their course content.

Software also gave educator teams data on student progress that allowed them to make their planning and interventions more targeted to students’ needs. Some schools also used software that recommended student groupings and lesson plans for small group instruction.

All too often, schools may be trying to personalize learning while treating one of their most crucial assets—human capital—as fixed. But as the findings from this report illustrate, many pioneering schools see personalized learning and teacher quality not as separate strategies, but as complementary levers within their broader efforts to better serve their students.

In that light, the findings from this report are a bellwether to the field for showing the alignment between personalized learning and human capital approaches that improve access to quality teaching.

If everyone who reads our articles and like it , help to fund it. Our future would be much more secure if you send us your donations…THANK YOU

Effective Listening & Conversation: Developing Your Skills

1.jpg

To make progress on the pressing issues we face today, organizers and advocates need the skills and training to turn a desire to change the status quo into meaningful and impactful civic action. But finding the time to attend a training in person can often mean time away from other everyday priorities.

That’s why OFA offers online trainings—where you can develop your skills without leaving your home. And if you miss a live online training, you can always check out the recording and watch it at a time that’s convenient for you. Whether you’re looking for introductory-level skill building or something more advanced, we have a training series for you.

OFA has designed a five part series aimed at developing skills in persuasion and communication. In this series, we cover effective listening, communicating your values, knowing your ‘why’, developing your theory of change, motivational interviewing and key skills for talking to voters — ultimately developing a suite of skills that you can use to have more effective conversations. This series combines social science, psychology, and best practices for political organizers, and gives participants room for practice, feedback, and application of the craft — right in time for 2018.

Part 1: Effective listening:

Part 2: Know your why:

Part 3: Why, how, what:

Part 4: Motivational interviewing:

Using a technique borrowed from clinical psychology, motivational interviewing helps practitioners to identify contradictions in what people are saying—highlighting assumptions that are being made, and stating them in a non-judgemental way. Research shows that when people are able to state their own contradictions, they are more likely to change their behavior. Though challenging, this training provides useful techniques that you will come back to again and again, not just in your organizing work, but in your personal and professional conversations as well.

Part 5: Voter contact best practices:

Talking to voters presents a challenge, we have thousands and thousands to talk to, but they must also be quality conversations. These two factors often create a push-pull effect; if we increase the quantity of conversations they often have lower quality but if we increase the quality we often get lower quantity. In this training we will cover three types of voter contact and how to incorporate relational organizing powerfully into voter conversations.

If everyone who reads our articles and like it , help to fund it. Our future would be much more secure if you send us your donations…THANK YOU

Features You Should Consider In Your Virtual PBX System

Image result for Features you should consider in your Virtual PBX System

If you are considering a virtual PBX system for your business you have already taken the first steps towards ensuring you are keeping operations costs to a minimum. A virtual PBX system can drastically reduce the amount of money that you will be paying to set up your telecommunications system, but only if you have the right system for your needs.

Here is what you need to consider when determining what your virtual PBX system will look like.

What a virtual PBX system is

A virtual PBX system is a phone system that is run through the internet. Instead of transmitting information over a phone line, an audio signal is transformed into data packets that are then sent via the internet. They are re-formed (for lack of a better word) into an audible signal and can be accessed through a computer system.

Why many companies are choosing to use these virtual PBX systems

Many companies are choosing a virtual PBX phone system because they are easier and more affordable to set up than systems that are hard wired in. This is because a system that runs physical wires will need to have each phone and fax line installed. If a company moves from one location to another, it is only possible to take a physical system with you whereas a virtual PBX system can be moved quickly and easily.

Features to look for in a virtual PBX system

If you are getting a virtual PBX system for your company you need to make sure that it has the features that you are looking for. This may mean that you need to spend some time considering how your company communicates so that you can choose the right features for your employees. Some of the most common features include:

  • The ability to send and receive fax messages via email
  • Call directories that are organized by name
  • Call conferencing between more than one extension
  • Voice mail message conversion to email

You also want to make sure that your system is expandable. This is essential if you plan to be expanding your company in the future. It can be frustrating to have a system that works for you and which you like using, only to find that your company has outgrown the system and you need to look at new methods of getting phone service. Taking the time to look over the terms and conditions that any virtual PBX provider is offering can help you make the right choice for your company’s needs.

How to Lower Business Costs Using VOIP Technology

Image result for How to Lower Business Costs using VOIP Technology

If you are looking for a way to lower your business costs it may be worthwhile to consider how much you may be able to save if you make the switch from standard telephone systems to VOIP service.

For many people they may have heard the term VOIP but may be unaware of what it means and how it can benefit them. Here is what you, and they, need to know

What is VOIP?

VOIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. It sends the packets of digital information that make up what you are saying in your call through the Internet instead of through traditional phone lines.

Not only does it make it possible for a company to lower your rates there are many different additional functions that can be possible using VOIP technology. A VOIP setup may allow you to send and receive messages that would otherwise not be possible under a standard telephone set up.

How can VOIP save your business Money?

Employing Voip can save you money in a number of Ways:

  • Saving on Line Fees

There are several different ways that using a VOIP system can save you money. The first is that they can often allow users to get rid of using a cellular phone and a desk phone. Because calls can be sent to a cell phone quite easily with VOIP there may not be the need to use both of these communications devices. Because you are not paying for both lines your monthly billswill automatically go down.

  • Saving on call charges

Also there is the saving on your phone calls using VOIP. The rates for using VOIP are normally substantially cheaper than standard fixed telephone providers. You can obtain price packages that can include all local, national and even international calls for a fraction of the price.

Even without a price  package sometimes these national & international calls can be for free as they avoid using the normal phone network where the charges are incurred.

  • Saving on infrastructure costs

Another reason is that the cost of VOIP service is much lower than comparable services from a standard telecommunications provider. If you are just starting up you will not need to add the same wiring and infrastructure that can increase start up costs to the point where some companies are unable to afford them.

Part of the savings comes from the fact that there is no longer a need to establish wiring for data and telephone.

  • How it can Increase your Productivity

Using VOIP for your business can also increase your productivity. Not only can you access your telephone calls from your computer whether you are in the office or not you can also access things such as phone messages and faxes that you may receive at the same time as you are accessing your email.

This means that regardless of whether you are actually in the office or not you will be able to continue to deal with business decisions quickly and effectively. There are many reasons to choose VOIP for your business. Choosing the right provider is only the first step in getting the flexible and affordable telecommunications system that your business needs.