Management: Professional Experiences
Assistant Executive Director, e-Learning and Government Partnerships, National Science Teachers Association
Since coming to NSTA in 2001 as Director of the NSTA Institute with no direct reports, I have helped grow programming in excess of $28 million dollars in grants and contracts, and now manage a staff of 16 full time employees across 18 roles, as well as a cadre of external consultants that assist NSTA in the design, development, implementation and evaluation of our e-Learning resources and opportunities.
Executive management requires many skills and abilities, and I consider myself a practicing professional in this regard. It begins with selecting the most talented individuals with the skills, knowledge and abilities required for the position. It is critical to select managers that have four crucial characteristics:
- Internal motivation and sense of accomplishment in their efforts
- Integrity in all their business endeavors
- Aptitude for the position and the career path they aspire
- Diligent dependability and tenacity to accomplish their goals
If you fortunate enough to find employees with these qualities, you stand a large change of meeting your business goals and objectives.
Managing employees, team and projects requires many skills, several of which are:
- Instilling clear vision and impact of the mission and where teams contribute to it
- Forge co-created goals with measurable and achievable objectives
- Listening and actively supporting managers and teams as they bring you issues, acknowledge obstacles, and proactively work through challenges
- Empowering managers and team as leaders of their respective program with individual responsibility, accountability, and recognition for their accomplishments
- Establish a sense of trust and confidence in managers and team leads, and their ability to recognize when to share information up the chain of command with suggested solutions to ameliorate issues before they reach a critical mass
- Regularly established channels of communication and project management that monitor attainment of critical milestones toward objectives, bringing necessary and appropriate resources to achieve project goals.
Below you'll see experiences that demonstrate competencies in:
- Project Management
- Resource Management
- Delivery Systems Management
- Information Management
Manage overall portal planning components of the NSTA Learning Center, as show here via an early project management web to document research and components that needed to be addressed prior to launch. Manage regular inter-organization cross-functional teams to accomplish and track tasks.
See BaseCamp PPT. Areas of management cut across may facets of the portal:
- drafting initial $1M and $3M Learning Center proposals with their respective Final and Year 1 Impact Reports
- initial strategic analysis of need and review of existing services
- tool design specifications and portal features
- securing internal personnel, external consultants and web design expertise for:
- tool design and functionality
- overall web site design and navigation and help desk system
- usability studies and focus groups at various stages of development
Based on the current challenge of scaling PD on a national level, utilized research and SCORM learning objects to create initial templates and production model for what is now known as SciPacks, Science Objects, and SciGuides. Established internal organization management team and initial external consultant roles to create these products with necessary checks and balances.
- Managed a boot camp workshop with over 24 invited consultants to jump start production and secure needed external experts in various production roles, e.g., SciPack authors, Scope document authors, standards experts, pedagogical implications experts, assessment experts, accessibility experts, end-user reviewers, content expert reviewers, multimedia development, editorial and grammar review experts, SciPack online help wizards, etc.
- Drafted initial position descriptions, and hiring of key internal NSTA employee personnel for production:
- Crafted initial ADDIE production model flow chart, production timeline, external consultant roles and research literature/theories with supporting articles for SciPack production. See web with aggregated production docs.
- Designed and managed implementation of tiered WebWatcher SciGuide Help Desk System that also includes Quality Assurance Checklist and Customer Survey feedback loop. It was the design of this early system that set plan for NSTA Learning Center Help Desk System.
- Utilized early web-based project management tool to oversee distributed training of WebWatcher SciGuide consultants for NASA Explorer School Educators.
Created the LCMS RFP and managed the selection committee, as well as oversee the six week implementation of the enterprise LCMS for the organization. Help draft and served as NSTA lead to execute LCMS implementation plan with Outstart, which necessitated weekly meeting status updates reports with various subteams identifying forthcoming and completed milestones, as well as outstanding issues and concerns:
- key decisions regarding initial product price points,
- access/permission rights for members and non-members,
- integration across existing systems,
- determining business rules across organization departments as well as internal and external stakeholders.
Served as Co-PI, and NSTA project manager of a two year $847,000 National Science Foundation National Science Digital Library grant that created the back-end infrastructure to metatag all NSTA's digital resources to IEEE LOM and Dublin Core extended tags that are now auto-harvestable via OAI servers and the National Science Digital Library. Approached Ohio State University as PI partner given their experience with NSDL.
Challenge was how to metatag NSTA's digital assets and present them via a system that ensured content was searchable, findable, and sustainable on a national level via a web-based delivery portal. Managed and oversaw various facets and milestones of project:
- primary author of grant, drawing from current literature on IEEE LOM, IMS, SCORM, and ADLnet Department of Defense initiatives at time for shareable content objects.
- secured advisory panel, NSTA FTE personnel, and external consultants necessary for project, i.e., catalogers, third-party evaluators, accessibility experts, and usability experts. This effort began as an internal cross-functional Uniform Coding Committee where I assembled all the various database tags we use within the organization for our digital assets and PD opportunities.
- planning and moderating the advisory panel and managing external consultants
- managing weekly project update meetings against established milestones and resolving issues, e.g., IT architecture/hardware concerns, fiscal and manpower resource allocation, prioritization and sequence of tasks to achieve goals, integration of system within existing membership and ecommerce database systems, product selection and price points to feature within the portal.
- generate necessary Year 1 and Year 2 annual reports with PI as required.
- Review completion of various phases of project and tools, e.g. NSTA Metatag Tool (See Metatag PDF for screen shots)
Lead the project at the beginning of year 2 to accomplish goals of the grant, which were to create a cadre of specially trained teachers called webwatchers. This cadre, selected for their expertise in science education and technology application in the classroom developed a coding process that would help identify high quality web-based materials, and engage in professional development that would teach them how web resources could be correlated to the national science standards and tagged along key features unique to the Internet, e.g., interactivity, communication and collaboration, inquiry, multimedia, etc. This would all be shared via an interactive web site when completed, now called SciGuides.
- Improved web-based teacher candidate selection process for selecting summer participants
- Designed overall workshop template with daily evaluation metrics, sequence and type of PD experiences to be delivered, e.g., advanced search and implementation strategies for differing levels of classroom Internet access (one computer classroom, portal carts, computer classrooms).
- Assisted in the selection of external workshop visiting experts, group leaders, and delivered portions of the training, serving as daily moderator of the summer workshops.
- Managed process that created back end WYSISYG content development system to create SciGuides with distributed peer-review mechanism and eight 3-level analytical rubrics.
- Created and managed development of comprehensive self-paced tutorials to guide the development of SciGuide production.
- Facilitated external focus groups, random sample end-user surveys, and NSTA national committee member external reviews sessions at various stages of product development and deployment.
- Managed the external launch of SciGuides as a new NSTA e-resource for educators. Managed and produced project to create cross-platform 2.5 minute Flash multimedia overview of SciGuides resource on small Flash Drive. Drafted script, secured images, managed budget, and external media and reproduction company.