IBMers learning from each other

In 2008, we instituted cross-geography mentoring on a pilot basis with China, India and South Africa with plans to expand the program in 2009 to include Brazil, Dubai, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam. The program’s objectives are to increase the flow of knowledge and develop talent companywide—overcoming geographic barriers by fostering collaboration and promoting cultural intelligence.

One of the program‘s pairs is Danny Chen, a Taiwan-born engineer who now works in Austin, Texas, and David Lin, a software programmer at the Taipei Lab in Taiwan. Chen mentors Lin on the intricacies of the patent process and how to develop patentable ideas, and Lin shares important information with Chen about doing business in China.

The relationship has already paid off, personally and professionally. Last year, the Taipei lab was awarded five patents—up from one in 2005. And a team at the lab now publishes a newsletter featuring a wealth of useful tips for other inventors.

  1. Mentor:
    Mike Smith, Distinguished Engineer, U.S.
    Mentee:
    Rice Chen, Executive, BetaWorks, China

    Most Recent Discussion: Leadership skills

  2. Mentor:
    Marilyn Johnson, VP Market Development, U.S.
    Mentee:
    Lenhle Daka, Territory Manager, South Africa

    Most Recent Discussion: Black Economic Empowerment Laws in South Africa

  3. Mentor:
    Jon Tilt, Chief Test Architect, U.K.
    Mentees:
    Srinivas Pinjala, Java Technologies, India Software Lab

    Most Recent Discussion: Intellectual Property issues

Employee Learning and Development: Business Analytics and Optimization

We’re seeing a rising trend in the number of jobs in what is known as Business Analytics and Optimization (BAO), which includes high-demand areas like business forecasting and business intelligence. BAO draws on many disciplines—everything from meteorology and computer visualization to Web 2.0 application development and organizational psychology to biology and computer science.

Together with our business partners, clients and universities, IBM is driving innovation around this new class of consulting jobs and plans to retrain or hire up to 4,000 new analytics consultants and professionals. In second quarter 2009, we established a network of Analytics Solution Centers, with initial locations in Beijing, London, New York, Tokyo and Washington, DC. The centers will enable IBM to meet growing client demand for advanced analytics capabilities as part of new, smarter business systems.

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