Minnesota Morning: Hack The Gap, Amazon Minneapolis Office And The Iron Yard Demo Day


Downtown Minneapolis

 

Facebook’s “On This Day” shows me that many years this has been a cold week in Minneapolis… looks like I’ve posted a number of thoughts and photos of very cold days. That seems to parallel a local weather report I heard that this is historically the coldest week of the year. NOT this year. While we have been colder than average for much of the past month, we are experiencing a couple of +40F days and the extended forecast is above normal.

Thank you January Thaw…

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Minnesota Morning | The Iron Yard, MyAlerts Funding And MN Tech Podcast


Paul DeBettignies, Minnesota Recruiter, Minnesota Headhunter

“The not so glamorous side of #recruiterlife: 12 hour day, caffeine, sandwich in the skyway, Spotify, 21 tabs and a bunch of Chrome extensions. Looking for iOS Dev's #MNtech

I posted that photo yesterday after having a conversation with a HR friend who asked if my day was always full of meetings and events. I said no, there are a lot of phone calls, sourcing and writing too. They said an occasional photo of a normal work day would be interesting. That’s fair… I think a view into what a full work day is like might be interesting including the “boring” stuff and 11 pm sourcing sessions.

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Minnesota Morning | Do It Now, Minnesota Recruiter Jobs And Minnesota Jobs Scene


It’s 2017… it feels good to say that.

Not because 2016 sucked or was an awful year. 2016 was a year of business and personal confirmation. I don’t know that I learned a lot of new things… but I validated/affirmed what I thought was true. What I thought I was good at I am freaking good at it. What I thought I suck at I really suck at. And the people I have around me, are the best. I’m a lucky guy.

Knowing all that, for me, is HUGE.

I have been looking forward to 2017 and taking a number of big steps this year. That includes the next item…


New Year’s Resolutions

I don’t do them. I never have. Nothing wrong with them but I think any day you wake up you can make a change. So why wait 365 days to do them.

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Minnesota Morning | Atique, Hack The Gap And 10 Hard To Find Tech Skills


Earlier this week I took a drive to St Paul to check out the Christmas lights at Rice Park. A few days prior we had snow on the ground but after some rain it was all gone. I’ll make another trip over there when it snows again. A couple of photos:


 Rice Park, St Paul, Christmas lights Rice Park, St Paul, Christmas lights


Atique

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Minnesota Morning | Countdown To 2017 And F*** Yes Or No

After spending 1/3 of the 2016 summer in the Alexandria, MN area until the holiday weekend I had not been up there in 2 months. Obviously gone are the warm summer days and the fall colors but the area lakes are still ice free. So first thing I did before seeing family was find a lake and sit on some rocks:

Lake L'Homme Dieu, #LakeLife 


The next day before Thanksgiving dinner I took a country road drive and while doing some thinking pulled over a few times to take a couple of photos:


Garfield Minnesota Oscar Lake, #LakeLife


Like most people 2017 was (is) on my mind and I have been thinking the past couple of weeks about what to add to my personal and professional life and what to take out. Things like volunteering, clients and types of work, friendships, writing, speaking and new projects (should I do them or not).

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Minnesota Morning | Thomson Reuters Layoffs, UnitedHealth Group Hiring And CoCo Expands

 

It’s been a week since Election Day… leading up to it I was ready for it to be over and on to whatever was going to be next. I’ve been having a “be careful watch you wish for” moment. I was guessing it would be a new version of what we have endured the past months and years. So far that seems to be the case.

On Facebook I noticed I had posted this 4 years ago in the early hours after the 2012 election:
 

Election Day 2012


While completely jaded about our entire political system and hoping someone steps up in the next weeks and months that can be a more centrist politician and start uniting the country, or at least represent the middle 40% of us, I am still grateful that we can have “peaceful” elections no matter how messy they are on TV and online.

On my way to the voting booth I took this photo:


God Bless America, Election Day 2016


I’ve been finding myself “looking up” a lot the past week.

 

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Minnesota Morning | MN IT Layoffs And Top 10 LinkedIn Skills

 
We’ve had an amazing fall in Minneapolis (some photos below from this weekend) and the forecast for this week is in the 60’s. Why I am talking about the weather to start this… anyone who was in Minneapolis 25 years ago today will remember the Halloween Blizzard of 1991. An epic storm that dropped 28.4 inches of snow over three days.

I was in college then and my fraternity had a Halloween party that I was not able to get to… I was not living near campus and by the time I started to make the drive it was too late. Roads were not drivable. I missed a 3 day party #BLEEP


MN IT Layoffs

There have been a number of IT layoffs in Minneapolis in 2016. While sensitive to those impacted, in a macro view I would call most of them “normal”. Most people found jobs within weeks and life continued on.

In the next days there is going to be a BIG announcement from a company that will impact 100’s of local tech pros. Most will be OK either landing in the new structure, applying for jobs already posted at the company or finding a new job at other companies. But this is going to get some headlines.

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Minnesota Morning… Exhale

Downtown Minneapolis, Capella Tower

I am on day five of doing nothing and it feels really weird. One part freeing and one part W T H… I should be working my (bleep) off. One good thing is I don’t wake up exhausted any more. And I seem to be doing some big picture thinking which I guess makes sense when you are not running off to the next meeting, conference call or candidate interview.

Since I wrote Taking A Step Back, Skate Where The Puck Will Be And What’s Next For Me almost a month ago to the day a bunch of things have gone including (not in order):

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Minnesota Morning: Taking A Step Back, Skate Where The Puck Will Be And What’s Next For Me

If we break the year up into thirds and I use a sports analogy which I commonly do, this time from hockey… today starts the 3rd period of 2016. And I am reminded of this quote:

Skate to where the puck is going, not where it has been. - Wayne Gretzky
 

The past month or so I took a big step back from the Minnesota startup, tech and recruiter scene. For the previous 18 months or so I had been so head down recruiting and attending tech meetups that I lost some vision on what was going on and what was coming next. I had a sense of some things changing but did not have enough time to explore, confirm or deny them.

I did a lot of lurking on Twitter and LinkedIn. I was watching status updates… what people were talking about, what kind of mood they were in and what they were working on. Add in a bunch of phone calls and Hangouts. “Hey, do you have a minute for a quick question” was a common email or text from me and note… it was never a minute.

I then extended out from Minneapolis and spoke with some Midwest and Bay Area friends.

There are a number of trends in the Minneapolis, Midwest and Bay Area tech scene that will start, have started to change the tech hiring landscape. While most folks are skating where the puck was (reactive) and some are skating where it is (getting by) there are very few in Minneapolis and the Midwest going where the puck will be (proactive).

Memo to Recruiters, CEO’s and Investors: skate where the puck is going.

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Minnesota Morning: Twin Cities Startup Week, Teen Hackathon And MN CTO Job


Twin Cities Startup Week, Minnesota Tech, Minnesota IT Jobs


Twin Cities Startup Week is 32 days away, Sep 19-25 ‘16, and plans are coming together. Unfortunately I am going to be in Anaheim speaking at SourceCon, this is a good problem, and missing Wed-Sat. I have submitted a talk with Patrick Meenan (LinkedIn | Blog | @pmeenan1), Partner at Arthur Ventures, on networking, recruiting and scaling a team to be held Monday or Tuesday.

This is the 2nd year of the “Fly In” program where folks interested in the MN tech scene can “apply for a flight” and be reimbursed up to $300:

TCSW is proud to announce that we will be offering a fly-in program for this year's Startup week. If you are looking for potential employment with MN startups and if you are interested in attending Twin Cities Startup Week we want to hear from you.

I am one of the sponsors of this and also one of the “interviewers”. Click Twin Cities Startup Week Free Flights and fill out the form.

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