Tuesday, September 28, 2010

CCIE Experiences

Two years ago I gave a 45-minutes session of "How to Become CCIE" on Cisco Networkers Solution Forum in my country, Indonesia. The response was quite positive, the big hall where I presented was full and I got the highest feedback among all the speakers in that event. Few months later I presented similar topic in front of the students of my former university. But I added more slides about the story of my life while preparing for the lab exam, my experience during lab day, with some advices about the career as network engineer. 

This Sunday I have scheduled a WebEx meeting for the session that I call "CCIE Experiences: a complete story of how to prepare, pass, work and live as CCIE". I will use the same material that I presented in my university, with some update to the exam information. It's open for any Indonesian networkers only, since I will conduct the session in my native language Bahasa. If you look at the agenda below you can see that the session may be beneficial not only for those who are currently preparing for CCIE, but as well as for those who have just started following the certification program, or for those who are still thinking to move to networking field:

- About the Speaker
- How I Did It, the Summary of My Journey
- Story of Others
- Career @ Global Market, Career @ Cisco Systems
- How to Become Engineer ++ “Menjadi Network Engineer ++”
- How to Start “Bagaimana Untuk Memulai” FAQ
- Insert: Cisco Networking Academy Program
- How to Become a CCIE
- Cisco Certification overview
- CCIE program overview
- CCIE Service Provider overview
- CCIE written and lab exam
- Lab exam grading
- How to pass, tips from someone who has done it 3 times
- Sharing my CCIE experiences
- Questions and Answers
- Building Avatar

Don't expect to get real CCIE lab questions there.
No NDA material will be disclosed.

As I mentioned above, the session is more like a complete story of my CCIE journey, where you can hear how someone did it (three times), how did he prepare, his experience during lab day, and how he works and lives as CCIE after he passed, with some additional advices about the career in networking field. The best of all, the session is free and open to anyone as long as you are willing to register. 

Any Indonesian, or anyone who understands Bahasa, wherever you are, are welcomed to join this session. I will provide the list of WebEx numbers in many countries that you can dial.

Based on some comments I have received so far, I'm considering to repeat the WebEx session of this CCIE Experiences in English. The time is most probably on Sunday afternoon Dubai time, sometime next month. It will be on Sunday because I don't want to disturb everyone's normal working time. 

Let me know if you are interested with this English session. 

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Building Avatar

Many people really care about what others think about them. Sometime they even try to influence what others see in them. They build a profile or a self image that they want others perceive about them. The profile that people want others to see is something that I call Avatar.

I personally believe it's fine to build your avatar. In professional world it is not who you really are that matters, but it's what people believe you are capable of. For example, the best public speaker can be a shy person in his daily life. He can give the best speech in public because he practices hard and make people believe in what he says. One famous blogger can write about her opinions to various subjects that happen around the world, and she's probably a paranoid who never leaves home. Her ideas can go beyond her place and read across the globe. 

The real you doesn't really matter. If you can make others believe you are good in something, than you are good in that thing!    

How if someone is so desperate to be recognized and faking his avatar? For example, one can write bunch of stuff in his resume in order to get hired by a good company. Well, a good company usually doesn't just buy resume but will have several phases of interview and verification process. Even if the fake avatar can get the job, once he needs to interact with others they can figure it out. At the end, we all must live our own lifes. I don't think anyone can live someone's life and survive. At least not for long.

Having perfect avatar in mind can be a target to chase too. We can define what we want to be, then start making plan to achieve it.

My ideal avatar would be something like this:
- someone who can accept project assignment anywhere in the world
- has extensive experiences dealing with leading edge technologies from IP NGN, video, security, wireless and data center 
- can blend easily with customers from different culture and countries from Asia to Africa, from Middle East to Europe, to central and latin America
- a result oriented person, loves the freedom with working hour and able to work from anywhere. What matters is to deliver the outcome within the target date
- likes to play strategic role in any network deployment and infrastructure migration projects   
- he has been involved with network design from different types of customer industries from service provider, government, enterprise, banking, carrier, mobile operator, oil and gas, university to small medium business around the world 
- a person with hands on experience in the field doing different roles; technical consultant, project manager, solution architect, lead engineer, pre-sales consultant, to deployment and migration lead
- possesses professional certifications from different vendors, including the toughest like CCIE in multiple tracks   
- enjoys to be part of the team, thrilled even more every time he is rewarded to lead the team
- a pioneer, can follow the current template and process but able to re-invent everything from the scratch if necessary
- has been employed by world class companies like Schlumberger, IBM and Cisco Systems in multiple countries   
- always shares his knowledge and inspires others
- likes to travel and loves to capture the world from close distance with his Leica film camera
- a family man who always tries to keep the life - work balance from time to time and still able to entertain himself in between    

Hey, you know what? The list doesn't look unfamiliar. That's probably because I've been doing all the things above in my real life. Unlike Jake Sully, I don't need to use a machine to connect to my avatar. The avatar is inside me. I don't need to change people perception about me. All the things in the list are real. Those are the ones that I have gained from my experience working more than 10 years in the computer networking industry in many countries. I don't need to build my avatar anymore. I'm living my avatar.

I'm my own avatar.


And I can help you to build one like mine.
Wait for my next announcement.