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Resources: UPA 2007 Panel

Training Up to Senior

A panel discussion with: Kaaren Hanson, Paul Sherman, Stephanie Rosenbaum, Wendy Castleman.

These notes from the flip charts capture the audience discussion and augment the slides for the session:

Acrobat PDF fileTraining Up To Senior - Bridging The Gulf Between Internships And Senior UCD Positions

Strategies for companies to train junior folks up to senior

  • Contractors 2:1
    1. More experience than staff
    2. Some stay [as long as] 4 years
    3. Train employees
  • Certification programs
  • Send developers and technical communicators to training
  • Hire MS from top design schools
  • Give people different opportunities to grow skills
  • Hire SMEs as designers, teach UCD (Autodesk)
  • Hire process – oriented, intuitive people
  • Hire people who can take initiative, be change agents, teach negotiation skills (course), join on-campus initiatives (Motorola)
  • Give people lots of room to grow (Google)
  • “Train the trainer” certification programs
  • Recruit from the top schools, intern positions
  • Give top folks more opportunities, mentor with others
  • Hire process – oriented and creative/intuitive people
  • Suitcase training, bring to the team

What didn’t work to train junior folks up to senior

  • Academic programs several years behind the times, also uneven quality
  • Without academic credentials, people move out of the profession
  • Industry must tell academia what we need
  • Need work/business/politics experience
  • Need internship before “real” job
  • Hard to find real problems during interview process
  • Need collaborative cultural skills, communities of practice
  • “Tweeners” who move between UER, design
  • Some academic programs are behind the curve
  • Some programs provide wide training, not deep enough

Moving Up To Senior…What Do I Do?

  • Cross-train, SDLC, business, keep mouth shut – listen!
  • Mentoring/Pairing up
  • Road of hard-knocks
  • Work at consulting company
  • Fight way into projects – go into other meetings
  • Professional groups/volunteer
  • VOLUNTEER!
  • Need to learn teamwork outside of school
  • In young profession, job definitions not cast in concrete

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