Monthly Archives: December 2013

FREE Gift and Special Discount Offer from ITLever

Last minute “stocking stuffers”
and a FREE gift

I want to wish all my ITLever subscribers and visitors a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. I hope you have had a successful year and will enjoy the holidays.

This is our 500th post so I wanted to do something special, , , read on.

Now is the time for giving so don’t forget your IT managers. Below are two ways to give yourself and IT managers you know a gift that will help them achieve more success.

Use both offers and tell others, , , good through January 10, 2014.


OFFER #1  —  FREE copy of
21 Secrets Every IT Manager Should MUST Know

21 Secrets Cover4Download my newest e-book, print it and give a copy to your IT manager(s), , ,
or simply give them the url link to download a copy of their own.

Receiving a hard copy color version from you will make it more special!

I think you will find this book insightful, interesting, and fun to read.
The e-book sells for $19.95 on our web site but it’s free with this offer.

Sorry, this free offer has expired

CLICK HERE to Order the e-book


OFFER #2  —  20% discount
on all purchases through January 10, 2014

We have offered discounts on specific products before
but never a discount across the board.

Any purchase on our IT Manager Store site
through January 10th, 2014 will receive a 20% discount.

— Practical IT Manager Resources —
Training  —  Books  —  Tools

itbmc_1To receive your discount, simply apply the discount code “jumpstart
to the Shopping Cart before checking out.

The system reduces item prices by 20% automatically.

Order 1 item or several, , , you will receive 20% off of everything.

Examples of what you can save through January 10, 2014:
IT Manager Institute and ITBMC class- save $590.00
IT Manager Institute Self Study – save $199.00
Practical IT Manager GOLD Series e-books & ToolKit – save $55.80
IT SUCCESS Summit in Dubai (May 6-8, 2014) – save $300.00

If you’ve been thinking of attending the IT Manager Institute
or buying the GOLD Series of e-books and tools,
now is the time to purchase to save 20%.
(Offer available through January 10, 2014)

Offer is valid for any item listed on
when you use the discount code “jumpstart

Our web site accepts the following:
American Express, VISA, MasterCard, Discover, and PayPal

If you have problems making payment or need an invoice,
contact our office at

  Please feel free to share these offers with your colleagues.

I hope your holidays are wonderful and that 2014 will be your best year ever.


2013 Sisco Family Christmas Letter

We mailed our 2013 Christmas cards and letter to family and friends last week. It is the 21st year we have sent a letter along with our card.


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. I hope 2014 will be your best year ever!!!


2014 IT Manager Institute Training Schedule

To date we have delivered 58 IT Manager Institutes since 2003 with 100% positive feedback. We are very excited about 2014.

2014 IT Manager Institute Training Schedule:IT Manager Institute eagle coin

  • March 3-6, 2014 — Dubai, UAE
  • April 1-4, 2014 — Columbia, TN (US)
  • May 26-29, 2014 — Dubai, UAE
  • September 16-19, 2014 — Columbia, TN
  • October 13-16, 2014 — Dubai, UAE

Details are at:

ITManagerInstitute58_Dubai_October_2013IT Manager Institute #58 – Dubai, UAE – October 2013
Click photo to see more Institute photos

Hope to meet you at a future event.


Coping with STRESS

stressIT managers have difficult and challenging management responsibilities. In fact, you have arguably the toughest management role in your company because:

  • Technology is changing so fast
  • Users are demanding more from IT
  • IT employees are challenging to manage
  • Usually no one is around who can help a struggling IT manager

With these challenges comes stress which can be both costly and bad for your health.

Here are a few numbers from 2012 and 2013 studies worth considering:

  • In 2012 the World Health Organization estimated that stress cost the US over $300 billion in lost productivity.
  • UK workers lose 105 million days a year due to stress related issues and costs the UK over 1.2 million pounds a year
  • 40% of job turnover is attributed to stress by some studies.
  • Australia loses about $10 billion a year in lost productivity due to stress.

stress_1Stress is real and creates expensive health costs, periods of disability, absenteeism, job turnover, and poor productivity.

I know how real it is because I’ve seen stress take it’s toll on workers and I’ve even experienced it myself. Stress can be debilitating to a point it becomes hard to get out of bed in the morning. It can literally “lock you up” to the point it is difficult to function.

Left unchecked stress can be dangerous to your health, , , even to a point of life threatening from some of the health problems it can create such as high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke.

Warning signs
Stress indicators show up in several ways including:

  1. Cognitive – memory problems, difficulty in concentrating, poor judgment, and focusing on the negative
  2. Emotional – moody, short temper and feeling overwhelmed
  3. Physical – headaches, backaches, frequent colds, and can’t sleep
  4. Behavioral – change of eating or sleep patterns, isolation, increase in drug or alcohol use

I don’t know about you but I don’t see anything positive in these elements, , , it’s all negative.

What causes stress?
IT employees can tend to cause their own stress. You will see what I mean when you read the list below:

  • IT employees are high detail people who can be perfectionists. This need to be “perfect” creates stress.
  • Uncertainty abounds in IT with technology changing rapidly and users wanting flexibility and needing more technology.
  • Perfectionists are “their own worst critic” so they sometimes put unrealistic pressures on themselves.
  • You can’t control everything like IT people want and need to. Networks and systems will break at some point and any type of downtime creates stress for IT workers.
  • Technology users sometimes have unrealistic expectations of IT.

Reducing stress
There are ways to reduce stress, but it takes a concentrated effort. Here are a few ideas:

  • Avoid unnecessary stress – learn to use your senior management team and avoid battles that can be avoided.
  • Alter the situation – Compromise where you can, manage your time better, or express yourself and “get things off your chest”
  • Accept things you can’t change – Let go, , , you can’t control everything. Talk about it and look for positives in stressful situations.
  • Try to avoid your tendency to procrastinate on important work; be proactive and get ahead of the game as opposed to waiting to the last minute.

One of the things I do when stress hits is find a time where I can go to a quiet space and free up my mind.

stress_2I let my mind go to a special place in my life that helps me calm down, , , for me, this is the 6th hole of the Kaneohe Marine Base Golf Course. It’s a perfect 6-iron shot into the wind, my favorite shot.

I play this par-3 hole in my mind and when completed I go to the first tee and play a whole round of golf, , , in my mind. Before you know it, a lot of the stress has dissipated, , , believe me, it actually helps.

Your enjoyable space may be looking at a sunset, listening to the ocean breeze, or that special time you spent on one of your favorite vacations. Whatever it is, the point is to allow your mind the opportunity to “free itself up” from the pressures you are experiencing.

Be aware that your people experience stressful times as well so be on the alert for stress signs and do things that helps them feel appreciated, to eliminate uncertainty and reinforce the positives of what your IT organization is accomplishing. Appreciation does much more than you probably think.

Pay attention to stress, , , left unattended it can be destructive to your progress.