Channeling Mainframe Performance Expertise
Now, I will admit that for certain types of projects, the benefits of working side-by-side with your colleagues are enormous and simply not possible when working remote. For example, back in the 1990s, when I worked for IBM, I was part of the original MVS Workload Manager (WLM) design and development team. Even with today’s technology, I do not know how this project could have been completed while working remotely. We were a relatively small team developing a somewhat complex piece of operating system software. WLM was made possible with us keeping in constant communication with office-to-office drop-ins, team meetings, hallway run-ins, and cafeteria discussions. I do not know how many design ideas were drawn up on the back of a napkin during a lunch break while sitting together in the cafeteria. Most of this is now lost while working remotely. Regardless, I still feel that working remotely has greater benefits than working on-site. The greatest benefit is a better balance of work and home life.
The reason I bring this up is because I am an mainframe performance guy, and I count myself extremely fortunate to have learned from IBM’s best when I was a junior performance person. I know firsthand the importance of in-person learning from these senior colleagues.
As the trend of working remotely continues, a great number of potential opportunities will be lost when we can no longer look ‘over the shoulder’ of a more experienced colleague. Therefore, it is more critical than ever you keep in great communication with senior members of your team on the other end of that web connection.
I also encourage you to draw from a larger community of experts who are taking advantage of a variety of internet technologies to share their expertise beyond traditional web classes and articles. Look for mainframe performance expertise being shared in YouTube videos and free educational webinars to continue to build your expertise.
Peter Enrico is the creator of the YouTube Mainframe Performance Channel, and co-designer for Pivotor for mainframe performance reporting
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