Professional Development Week 2020

Red ladder rising above a room full of other ladders - the ladder of success

It's not enough these days to just be an ace with technology. You need a broad skill set to stand out in the sea of IT professionals and move ahead -- skills in project management, communicating complex information, and leading effective teams are critical in the workplace. This week is all about the non-technical professional and personal skills you need to get ahead and advance your career.

This virtual education week features:

  • 15 live webinars (available later for on-demand viewing)
  • opportunity to earn up to 15 CPE credits during initial live broadcast of sessions (credits cannot be awarded for viewing recordings)
  • virtual meet-ups
  • access to an exclusive online community for deeper dialogue and Q&A with speakers and other attendees.

Member Price


Non-Member Price


Save even more! After your first full-price registrant, others from your company can save $50 on registration

Contact for your company discount.


Monday, Oct. 5

11 am - 12 pm ET
Pushing the Boundaries (Career Growth)
Amair Mairaj, Allegheny Technologies Inc. (ATI)

Life is a race. If you don't run fast enough, you will be overtaken. In such a fast-paced world, pushing boundaries is extremely important when it comes to career growth. However, being swamped at work and overwhelmed at home takes away that zeal and passion we once had. If you can't fly, then run. If you can't run, then walk. If you can't walk, then crawl. But whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward. This session will help you push beyond your boundaries. 

1 - 2 pm ET
Review of the OATUG PD Week & Executive Presence, Personal & Professional Branding for a Successful Career
Mohan Dutt, Equinix

Hear from Mohan Dutt, OATUG Education Committee Co-chair, about the sessions chosen for Professional Development Week. Then, Mohan will discuss how professionals can benefit immensely from developing three aspects of their persona: executive presence, personal branding, and professional branding. He will give executive presence tips that will help you to get ahead, influence others, and drive results. Professional branding is an essential element in effective leadership and the tips will make certain that emerging leaders identify, understand, and communicate why they should be remembered. Personal branding tips will help in developing and maintaining a reputation and impression for everyone. The first 10 attendees to this session will have a chance to receive a free book about this topic and/or professional development.

3 - 4 pm ET
Congrats on Your Promotion! You're Now a Manager - What Now?
Chao-Yee Watson, Xilinx

You are a successful individual contributor in your organization, and you've now been promoted to your first management position. Whether you're a technical expert or business functional expert, you now must adapt to new roles and responsibilities. This presentation discusses the new expectations that come with the role of manager as well as some of the skills and business acumen that will help you succeed.

4:30 - 5:30 pm ET
Virtual Meetup

Emerging leaders and young professionals, join with attendees and PD Week speakers for this virtual happy hour. Connect with others in the technology sector over a drink or a fun conversation, and enjoy a space where we can gather, laugh, and share ideas.

Tuesday, Oct. 6

11 am - 12 pm ET
Construction of a Successful Project Implementation
Charity Burrell, Bergelectric Corp.

Every software roll-out is a construction project. From understanding the desired end result to building the basic foundation of the project to testing the various systems and educating the end user on the use of what you built. Let me share with you what I have learned from several larger roll-outs in E-Business Suite Projects when it comes to turning over the project on time, within budget and providing the end user with the desired results. The presentation will also discuss methods to ensure the end user adapts to the new software and/or processes put in place to support the software.

1 - 2 pm ET
Don't Wear the Emperor's New Clothes: Management Techniques to Build Collaboration
Jeff Silverman, Grant Thornton LLP

Business executives are being misinformed. Missteps abound from improper analysis of information. Question: Who is to blame? Answer: Ourselves! Much like the emperor who wore no clothes, staff are often too afraid to tell the boss that something is "off." Learn techniques to diffuse white noise, deliver appropriate analysis, position next steps and -- most importantly -- get the boss on board!

3 - 4 pm ET
The Effective Manager: Yes, They Do Exist!
Mark Polino, Fastpath

As a manager, are you looking for truly actionable, practical tools to drive your team's success? Based on principles from the book The Effective Manager and "Manager Tools" podcast, we'll explore the four critical behaviors that make a manager great, and how to adjust your own behavior to be the leader your team needs. We'll also cover the four major tools that should be a part of every manager's repertoire, how to use them, and even how to introduce them to the team in a productive, non-disruptive way.

Wednesday, Oct. 7

11 am - 12 pm ET
New to IT or Oracle Applications: What I Know Now that I Wish I Knew Starting Out
Doug Manning, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab

One of the biggest challenges encountered when starting out, whether you are new to IT or to Oracle Applications, is “knowing what to know” and how to use that knowledge to build an enriching, successful and sustaining career. In this session, you will discover the lessons learned from a 30-year IT professional (nearly 25 of those years in the Oracle product space) who has successfully risen from intern to IT Services Head, and on to become president of the Oracle Applications and Technology Users Group (OATUG).

1 - 2 pm ET
Don't Let Moving to the Cloud Make Your Business Climate Stormy
Arwen Hawes, BIAS Corporation

This session will provide companies moving to the cloud tips and tricks to effectively manage change as they move from their current application to a cloud environment. The presentation is based on real world scenarios with a company that recently implemented Oracle SaaS cloud for Financials, Projects and HCM. The audience will learn how to maximize communication and learning tools their company already has to orchestrate successful change.

3 - 4 pm ET
Data Literacy: The Art of Story Telling for Non-Scientists
Richard (RJ) Stevens, III, Tanana Chiefs Conference

Data analysis is critical to business performance and growth, but many businesses lack an understanding of how powerful data science can be. Training leaders as well as yourself to think like data scientists in a few key areas - such as recognizing the completeness of data, the goodness of results, and data bias - enables data-driven decision making to discover and interpret the story that data has to offer. Data science is vast, but there are areas of understanding that can be achieved without a science background.

Thursday, Oct. 8

11 am - 12 pm ET
Agile Implementation for Oracle Cloud Implementations: A Perspective on Practical Application!
Mani Kumar Manda, Rhapsody Technologies

Agile implementation approach is a great tool for software product development. As it gained popularity for software development, project managers and leadership are adopting this approach for implementing Oracle Cloud applications. But is this the right path for implementing ERP or CRM applications in general and Oracle Cloud Applications in specific? In this presentation, we will talk about the experience of using this approach at three clients and how it impacted the project for better or worse, presenting thoughts and ideas that will be practical for use at your organization.

1 - 2 pm ET
The EBS DBA in the OCI World
Nadia Bendjadou, Oracle with Fujitsu's Santosh Kusuma & Anil Minocha

Join us for this special session as executives share their career insights for the EBS DBA heading into the OCI world. The good news is: there's good news and a rewarding career path ahead!

3 - 4 pm ET
From Waterfall to Agile: Practical Notes for Fearless Project Teams
Luda Azar, Equinix

This case study covers the journey from traditional Waterfall/Five-Stage to Agile. This is a real-life, trial-and-error ride of a large, diverse, cross-functional team that took a challenge of pioneering a new methodology for finance projects. The presentation describes initial considerations to adopt Agile and the experience of adopting it, from project set-up, communication, gathering and documenting requirements, training stakeholders, engaging vendors and ensuring SOX compliance. Finally, we present lessons learned using Agile and our key wins as a guide for fearless project teams.

4:30 - 5:30 pm ET
Virtual Meet Up

As we prepare to close out a great week of learning, join event participants, speakers and special guests for our final virtual meet-up. This is your opportunity for networking, forging connections and some final Q&A on the week's topics. And if you have insights and experiences to share, bring those! Your fellow attendees want to learn from you, too.

Friday, Oct. 9

11 am - 12 pm ET
Oracle Cloud: Bridging the Skills Gap
Basheer Khan, Knex Technology

Cloud computing already dominates the IT landscape. As Oracle Cloud adoption grows exponentially, a skills gap is also on the rise. Join Oracle ACE Director, Basheer Khan, as he introduces you to the Oracle Cloud landscape, identifies skills that are in demand and provides a roadmap to bridge your skills gap. Whether you are an Oracle developer, database administrator, functional expert or manager: attend this presentation to understand how you can upgrade your existing skills to stay relevant in the Oracle Cloud Computing world.

1 - 2 pm ET
Oracle Experts Panel Discussion: Your Path to Career Growth & Success
Mohan Dutt (Equinix), Mani Kumar Manda (Rhapsody Technologies), Kaberi Nayak (MITRE Corporation), Ravikanth Prabhu (Broadridge)

You're surrounded by change: the adoption of new technologies & applications, evolving job roles, new team and business dynamics arising from COVID... That means if you're not learning, growing and adapting with the changes, you're falling behind. Hear from these seasoned professionals (from the OATUG Education Committee) about what they've done and what you should do to chart a career development plan that keeps you ahead of the change curve and on a path that continually develops and capitalizes on your strengths for fulfillment and success. 

3 - 4 pm ET
The One Thing All Successful Oracle Implementation Programs Must Have
John Belden, UpperEdge

Despite risk management frameworks, robust development methodologies, and highly motivated teams, Oracle initiatives still fall victim to poor decisions. High quality decisions are arguably the single most important contributor to a successful Oracle implementation. This session will discuss Oracle implementation projects that have failed and how poor decision-making was the root cause; how the decision-making process impacts all facets of an Oracle implementation; how to fail-proof the decision-making process upfront; and outline four critical decisions to “get right” at the start.

CPE Credits for Professional Development Week

  • Earn 1 CPE credit for every session you attend live. Credits cannot be awarded for viewing session recordings.
  • To receive CPE credit, simply complete the CPE Credit Form and send it to

Download the CPE Credit Form

Questions about CPE Credit? Please email