Video: Building your personal brand

National IT-magazine Computersweden (IDG) has a career/recruiting site. I was recently video-interviewed on the topic of building your personal brand.

You can view the video below. It’s in Swedish… but here’s a translation:

“My name is Andreas Sjöström. I’m a developer and I manage Sogeti’s practice for online, mobile and Internet of Things. Building your own personal brand today is extremely important but it can be tricky, because the actual building of your brand must never be the primary motivation and drive for what you do.

For me, I’ve had two fundamental aspects in building my own personal brand:
The first aspect is the joy, passion, and love for what I do. Curiosity and the will to do something which is good not just for me but for others: the value. There’s tremendous amount of joy and passion in creating value.
The second aspect is the appetite and hunger to always learning more. There are always new things you can learn, in new forums and from new acquaintances. Learning is critical, especially in domains where you are not an expert to begin with, and then penetrate that.

When you build with passion and love, and skills and learning… when you use these things and make yourself available to others who seek it, need it… then your profile will be established as an expert. You’ll be recognized as being an expert.

So, for successful building of personal brand, you will need this:
that you then dare to claim your space, that you dare to be seen, that you are boldly confident, and sincerely humble with what you know.”

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Internet of Things-labs and connected flowers

Internet of Things… there’s nothing like cutting through hype and getting your own hands “dirty”. Chris Forsberg is visiting at our Stockholm office and the desks are now occupied by iBeacons, Arduino boards, Electric Imp-stuff, and soldering irons. Today, Dag Pettersson joined us and showed his latest experiments.
Below you can see some of the action and one of the finished ideas is a flower that is connected to the actual sales results of a customer, and depending on sales performance, the flower “changes” color. Only the imagination is the limit and that’s what I love with new technology.

… and now, we’re heading to Amit Chintawar’s place for some real Indian food. Life’s good!









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Summertime career reflections

Most of us are soon taking some time off. Let me suggest some summertime career reflections.

Purpose and belonging.

We all love doing good stuff. Stuff which is valuable and mean something.
Don’t lose sight of good. Spend a few moments thinking about what is good in the context you are in.
Spend time and effort there.
Whatever you are and whatever you do, you are always a part of something bigger.
Understand it. Look into it and look beyond it.
It creates a sense of belonging and drive. It drives new ideas and higher degree of dynamics.
You will discover new things to learn, for your enjoyment but also for your professional value.
What is beyond your project? What is beyond the company you work for? Who is your real customer? What is beyond the market?
The feeling of doing something good and purposeful in a context we understand, and perhaps even control, brings great satisfaction.

Being free and in control.

Never give up being free and in control of your development as a human being and professional worker.
Connect with your inner drive, nurture it with curiosity, openness and happiness.
Don’t let anyone else dictate your next move but be humble towards those who know more than you. And everyone else.
Your job or even your life will never just be filled with joy, passion and fun. Hard core skill is also the ability to learn from what is grey.
Don’t always flee it. Embrace grey for a while and you will find the most sparkling moments right there.
What you never thought you would enjoy, you may perhaps not love but you will learn from it.
If you are stuck in your career with nowhere to go: redefine or go. Find a new place and more importantly, find likeminded.
The desire and importance of being free and in control is deeply rooted in all of us.
Use it.

Never stop learning.

Go deeper. Go broader.
Be the best in something. In anything. But don’t be that snob who never accepts doing anything else.
Challenge yourself with completely new things. All the time.
Learn alongside with friends and colleagues.
Don’t be afraid to fail or do that which is not perfect. Perfecting comes only with learning and learning means by definition unperfected origin.
Look into new domains of knowledge both within and outside of your profession.
Learn from that which is beautiful in abundance. Art, music, poetry, or just nature.
Learn from that which is technical by definition. Mathematics, physics, or just logic.
Since the dawn of humanity we have always strived to improve and learn more.
Tap into that force.

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From wearables to biohacking

Sogeti’s trend lab, ViNT, recently published its second report on “Things”: “Empathic things: Intimate Computing from Wearables to Biohacking”. The 40-page report “explores the coming transition toward a more empathic form of computerization. … even more intimate, human-oriented and ubiquitous…. We are witnessing a computer boom in devices of all kinds, shapes and sizes – around, on or inside the body – that behave increasingly smarter and link up more and more intuitively with mankind’s extremely personal and natural interface.”

Topics like the shift from systems of records to systems of engagements, things IN-ON-AROUND you, and the increasing level of intimacy and intelligence in things, are addressed in the report. If you want to go deeper in understanding the context of wearables like Google Glass and where we’re heading, this report is well worth the read.

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Apple buys Microsoft Office division

Just days after the launch of Microsoft’s Office apps for iPad, the two IT-giants announce Apple’s acquisition of Microsoft’s Office division. Some analysts did predict this move last week, but none believed it would be announced so quickly.
The rationale for Microsoft seems to be to focus on device and cloud services, and leave the front end apps to Apple. As part of the agreement, Apple commits to support Office on all platforms including Windows, Mac OS X and all popular Linux distributions.
I’m expecting we will learn more in tomorrow’s press conference held in Redmond, WA.

Update: Yes, this was an April Fools’.

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