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June 2005
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August 2005

Laptops And Reproduction

This has nothing to with my blog other than I am a man and I have a laptop. So bear with me, but when someone says the temps on these things are too hot and that it can hurt my reproductive chances I am going to take notice.

Particularly as a single guy with no children.

So I consider posting this message as my duty to all men to make them aware of the potential dangers. Even if I am laughing while typing this…

Venture Capital Seeing More Action

The National Venture Capital Association has released its Q2 2005 results. Nationally investments by VC rose 19% and they continued to raise larger amounts of cash to be invested. Much of the investment is going to later stage companies but there is a growing trend of new cash going into first and second round deals.

Here are three links to the NVCA site with Q2 results:

Venture Capital Investing Rises 19% To $5.8 Billion In Q2 2005

Larger Venture And Buyout Firms Drive Vibrant Private Equity Fundraising Activity In Q2 2005

Venture Backed IPO Market Remained Week in Q2 2005

Here is a link to The Business Journal on the local venture scene. One bit of bad news, Utah two quarters in a row with more investment dollars than Minnesota? What’s up with that?

A Special Web Site, CaringBridge

I was introduced to the CaringBridge web site via the NetSuds monthly newsletter in June. My immediate reaction was what a fantastic way to help family and friends to communicate during life altering and challenging times.

I now have a personal experience with the CaringBridge site. At the end of June a student at the University of Minnesota and member of the Phi Gamma Delta, FIJI, fraternity was involved in an accident. Ryan Bade is from Sioux Falls, attends the U of M, was in the St Cloud Hospital and is now in Sioux Falls.

Ryan has an amazing group of family and friends and all wanted to be kept up to date on his progress. Ryan’s site has allowed for his family to give updates on his progress and for friends to send words of encouragement and share stories of Ryan. As of this morning his site has had 11,000+ visitors. It would be impossible for Ryan’s family to communicate with everyone looking for information on his improving condition but this site has done an amazing job.

This previous Sunday the Star Tribune had this article on the front page of their Business section. I applaud Ambient Consulting, bSwing, and Onvoy for donating their time and materials to support this site.

When I am asked by people who are still skeptical of the Internet and its use I point to this site. There are many uses for the Internet but the ability to communicate and share ideas and information is invaluable. This quote from the CaringBridge site says it all; “We make profound human connections, using technology to serve a higher purpose in a powerful way.”

Techniques And Tips For My Recruiting Friends

I have been neglecting my third party and corporate recruiter friends. It was pointed out by a colleague of mine that I had not posted anything recently for my recruiting friends.

Well here you go.

This article was posted on the Electronic Recruiter Exchange last Friday. Lou Adler posted his “Ten P’s of Recruiter Survival” As we get closer to the fall hiring season this is a good time to take stock in what we have accomplished so far, what we would like to do the rest of the year, and how we can improve our recruiting process and style to achieve our goals.

Last Weeks Unemployment Numbers Show Job Gains

Good news for most of Minnesota showing the number of jobs in the state greater than March of 2001 when most economists say the last recession started. As stated in the article below 28 other states have already reached pre March ’01 numbers so we are a little behind.

There is also some caution in the report, as month-to-month numbers tend to greatly fluctuate. If you look over the previous months there is a trend in the right direction. Lets hope this continues.

State Politics, A Rant

I was simmering pretty good during the government shutdown. Or the partial shutdown as they all tried to spin it. Marketing at its best right there. If thousands of workers are forced to take vacation time or unpaid leave there is nothing partial about it if your one of them.

In a July 10th Star Tribune article, Governor Pawlenty is quoted as saying, "When the good people of Minnesota decided to send about 100 Republicans and 100 Democrats to the Legislature, they gave us a challenge." Governor, let me take a try at it. The good people of Minnesota sent 200 legislators to the State Capitol to do their work, not act like a bunch of hard nosed, spoiled, can’t talk to each other little kids throwing sand at each other on the playground.

That same weekend Speaker Sviggum and Minority Leader Entenza were on WCCO TV’s morning news show. In speaking of how hard they had been working Minority Leader Entenza mentioned that they had been up very late, 4 am in some cases, in days leading up to the budget deal.

Minority Leader Entenza, Governor Pawlenty and Speaker Sviggum too, where was that work ethic in February? Did it really take 5 months of a regular session, a 1-month special session, and two weeks of a “partial”, your word not mine, government shutdown to make that deal?

If so either we need to elect capable leaders who are able to figure out how to run a state government or we, "the good people of Minnesota", need to elect leaders willing to do the peoples work and not their own self serving ego and politics game.

3rd Quarter Job Growth According to

This press release came out June 13 from It was forwarded to me a couple of weeks ago but I forgot to post it. It is worth noting that another survey shows job creation in the Midwest behind other regions. The flip side is when bad times hit, like the last recession, the Midwest gets hit later and not quite as hard compared to other regions.


-Three-fourths of hiring managers state they have added workers.

-The leading areas for new job requisitions include healthcare, sales, accounting/finance, information technology, retail and customer service.

-Businesses will be less likely to take part in outsourcing in the second half of 2005 as compared to the first half.

-For the third quarter in a row, projected hiring activity in the Midwest is tracking below the other regions.

-One-in-five workers still report discontent with their current positions and one-in-ten plan to secure a new position in the third quarter."

Fewer IT Internships Available

Many leaders talk about the lack of skilled IT workers yet fewer internships are available. This article from Information Week has some interesting points. Allow me to put one of mine out there, someone needs to step up and make sure these young people get experience or their future job may be offshored too.

Every sport has a minor league or “farm system” of some sort and some corporations are doing a great job of preparing future talent, and hiring them full time later, but most have no plan at all.

Girls Still Not Studying Math

This piggy backs on my posting of July 4, Women In IT, Where Have They Gone? Stats from the Department Of Labor say that 10% of the engineers in this country are women. A quote in this story bothers me in that this stereotype is still around after all these years; "There's definitely still a feeling girls have that they can't be good in math because they're a girl…"

Seriously? We have had all these advances in women’s sports like the World Cup and WNBA yet we cannot shake the idea that girls and math are not cool? This is absurd.

Tech Hiring Increased In 2nd Quarter

Seems like every week there is a story about tech jobs going over seas. Then there is this one from Business Week showing an up tick in hiring state side. New technologies, integration of different programs, and the need of offshore companies to have developers near their clients.

More evidence of techies needing to work with cutting edge technologies and not get caught up in maintenance of old skills. Also, a bad sign for entry-level workers.

Clothing, Pen And A Shoe Shine

ePrairie with a timely article Thursday in their weekly networking piece, Tech Connect.

This week they are talking about making impressions and the important part, clothing. You may remember this Job Search Tip post from me the other day regarding the too casual and much too short sundress.

I am dumbfounded that we find ourselves writing about such things as proper attire, getting a shoe-shine, and bringing a nice pen to an event.

Have you ever given a business card to a new contact and then they ask to borrow a pen to write down information? I bet they are the same person who when taking a test in junior high school forgot to bring their No. 2 pencil with them.

Job Confidence Levels Up, Down, and Up Again

Hudson, a professional staffing firm that does monthly surveys on employee confidence, shows a major swing to the positive in June after a big dip in May. Increases in hiring, income, job security, and job satisfaction are cited as reasons for greater confidence.

Information Week has some quotes on volatility in the IT sector and also notes skills in demand are web development, .Net technology, and upgrading ERP software.

Here is an article from June regarding the low numbers in May.

Looking at numbers from one month to the next does not make a trend. There are going to be up and downs in the months ahead but most trends show an increase in hiring and slow and measured growth in salaries.

Yes times have changed from the late 90’s. No longer is an IT person going to pick the salary and favorite flavor of coffee. Maybe a foosball table in a common place can still be found.

It is back to normal hiring and salary trends and I would think that after the dot-com bubble burst normal would be just fine with everyone.