Category Archives: Continuing Education and Seminar Marketing

This blog discusses effective marketing of seminars and conferences. The blog is intended for continued education professionals to share tips and results of their promotional effects.

Amazing Video of the Planning and Work for B-29 Bombing of Japan during WW II.

This is an amazing video for World War II. The Academy Award-nominated documentary, which shows the 21st Bombing Command and its role in the B-29 bombing of Japan. This film is about 35 minutes long.  To think of 600 B-29s all taking off from 3 locations and coordinating to bomb Japan at one time to fly 3000 miles is beyond imagination.

Look at the planning and control without the computers and GPS of today. This is worth viewing for anyone working in military research and planning.

The P-51 fighter  & B29 bomber footage is remarkable. We all owe a great debt of gratitude to the Greatest Generation.

This was recently posted by USNA-At-Large group and is worth viewing. The group is a good source of Navy- and Defense- related information.

Wow! The world’s first website went online 25 years ago Aug 6, 1991

On this day 25 years ago the world’s first website (Aug 6, 1991)  went live to the public. The site, created by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, was a basic text page with hyperlinked words that connected to other pages. We have come a long way baby!

Berners-Lee used the public launch to outline his plan for the service, which would come to dominate life in the twenty-first century.

See the story at the link below. I am impressed and I lived through that period. The current web site and domain name was created in July 1999. There was a web site hosted on for a number of years prior to 1999. Applied Technology Institute was founded in 1984, more than 32 years ago. It has been an exciting period as the web, email and technology exploded with potential


Jim Jenkins

How to Promote Your ATI Course in Social Media

How to Promote Your ATI Course in Social Media

LinkedIn for ATI Rocket Scientists


Did you know that for 52% of professionals and executives, their LinkedIn profile is the #1 or #2 search result when someone searches on their name?

For ATI instructors, that number is substantially lower – just 17%. One reason is that about 25% of ATI instructors do not have a LinkedIn profile. Others have done so little with their profile that it isn’t included in the first page of search results.

If you are not using your LinkedIn profile, you are missing a huge opportunity. When people google you, your LinkedIn profile is likely the first place they go to learn about you. You have little control over what other information might be available on the web about you. But you have complete control over your LinkedIn profile. You can use your profile to tell your story – to give people the exact information you want them to have about your expertise and accomplishments.


Why not take advantage of that to promote your company, your services, and your course?

Here are some simple ways to promote your course using LinkedIn…

On Your LinkedIn Profile

Let’s start by talking about how to include your course on your LinkedIn profile so it is visible anytime someone googles you or visits your profile.

1. Add your role as an instructor.

Let people know that this course is one of the ways you share your knowledge. You can include your role as an instructor in several places on your profile:

  • Experience – This is the equivalent of listing your role as a current job. (You can have more than one current job.) Use Applied Technology Institute as the employer. Make sure you drag and drop this role below your full-time position.
  • Summary – Your summary is like a cover letter for your profile – use it to give people an overview of who you are and what you do. You can mention the type of training you do, along with the name of your course.
  • Projects – The Projects section gives you an excellent way to share the course without giving it the same status as a full-time job.
  • Headline – Your Headline comes directly below your name, at the top of your profile. You could add “ATI Instructor” at the end of your current Headline.

Start with an introduction, such as “I teach an intensive course through the Applied Technology Institute on [course title]” and copy/paste the description from your course materials or the ATI website. You can add a link to the course description on the ATI website.

This example from Tom Logsdon’s profile, shows how you might phrase it:


Here are some other examples of instructors who include information about their courses on their LinkedIn profile:

  • Buddy Wellborn – His Headline says “Instructor at ATI” and Buddy includes details about the course in his Experience section.
  • D. Lee Fugal – Mentions the course in his Summary and Experience.
  • Jim Jenkins – Courses are included throughout Jim’s profile, including his Headline, Summary, Experience, Projects, and Courses.
  • 2. Link to your course page.

In the Contact Info section of your LinkedIn profile, you can link out to three websites. To add your course, go to Edit Profile, then click on Contact Info (just below your number of connections, next to a Rolodex card icon). Click on the pencil icon to the right of Websites to add a new site.

Choose the type of website you are adding. The best option is “Other:” as that allows you to insert your own name for the link. You have 35 characters – you can use a shortened version of your course title or simply “ATI Course.” Then copy/paste the link to the page about your course.

This example from Jim Jenkins’ profile shows how a customized link looks:


3. Upload course materials.

You can upload course materials to help people better understand the content you cover. You could include PowerPoint presentations (from this course or other training), course handouts (PDFs), videos or graphics. They can be added to your Summary, Experience or Project. You can see an example of an upload above, in Tom Logsdon’s profile.

4. Add skills related to your course.

LinkedIn allows you to include up to 50 skills on your profile. If your current list of skills doesn’t include the topics you cover in your course, you might want to add them.

Go to the Skills & Endorsements section on your Edit Profile page, then click on Add skill. Start typing and let LinkedIn auto-complete your topic. If your exact topic isn’t included in the suggestions, you can add it.

5. Ask students for recommendations.

Are you still in touch with former students who were particularly appreciative of the training you provided in your course? You might want to ask them for a recommendation that you can include on your profile. Here are some tips on asking for recommendations from LinkedIn expert Viveka Von Rosen.

6. Use an exciting background graphic.

You can add an image at the top of your profile – perhaps a photo of you teaching the course, a photo of your course materials, a graphic from your presentation, or simply some images related to your topic. You can see an example on Val Traver’s profile.

Go to Edit Profile, then run your mouse over the top of the page (just above your name). You will see the option to Edit Background. Click there and upload your image. The ideal size is 1400 pixels by 425. LinkedIn prefers a JPG, PNG or GIF. Of course, only upload an image that you have permission to use.


Share News about Your Course

You can also use LinkedIn to attract more attendees to your course every time you teach.

7. When a course date is scheduled, share the news as a status update.

This lets your connections know that you are teaching a course – it’s a great way to reach the people who are most likely to be interested and able to make referrals.

Go to your LinkedIn home page, and click on the box under your photo that says “Share an update.” Copy and paste the URL of the page on the ATI website that has the course description. Once the section below populates with the ATI Courses logo and the course description, delete the URL. Replace it with a comment such as:

“Looking forward to teaching my next course on [title] for @Applied Technology Institute on [date] at [location].”

Note that when you finish typing “@Applied Technology Institute” it will give you the option to click on the company name. When you do that ATI will know you are promoting the course, and will be deeply grateful!

When people comment on your update, it’s nice to like their comment or reply with a “Thank you!” message. Their comment shares the update with their network, so they are giving your course publicity.

If you want to start doing more with status updates, here are some good tips about what to share (and what not to share) from LinkedIn expert Kim Garst.

8. Share the news in LinkedIn Groups.

If you have joined any LinkedIn Groups in your areas of expertise, share the news there too.

Of course, in a Group you want to phrase the message a little differently. Instead of “Looking forward to teaching…” you might say “Registration is now open for…” or “For everyone interested in [topic], I’m teaching…”

You could also ask a thought-provoking question on one of the topics you cover. Here are some tips about how to start an interesting discussion in a LinkedIn Group.

9. Post again if you still have seats available.

If the course date is getting close and you are looking for more people to register, you should post again. The text below will work as a status update and in most LinkedIn Groups.

“We still have several seats open for my course on [title] on [date] at [location]. If you know of anyone who might be interested, could you please forward this? Thanks. ”

“We have had a few last-minute cancellations for my course on [title] on [date] at [location]. Know anyone who might be interested in attending?”

10. Blog about the topic of the course.

When you publish blog posts on LinkedIn using their publishing platform, you get even more exposure than with a status update:

  • The blog posts are pushed out to all your connections.
  • They stay visible on your LinkedIn profile, and
  • They are made available to Google and other search engines.

A blog post published on LinkedIn will rank higher than one posted elsewhere, because LinkedIn is such an authority site. So this can give your course considerable exposure.

You probably have written articles or have other content relevant to the course. Pick something that is 750-1500 words.

To publish it, go to your LinkedIn home page, and click on the link that says “Publish a post.” The interface is very simple – easier than using Microsoft Word. Include an image if you can. You probably have something in your training materials that will be perfect.

At the end of the post, add a sentence that says:

“To learn more, attend my course on [title].”

Link the title to the course description on the ATI website.

For more tips about blogging, you are welcome to join ProResource’s online training website. The How to Write Blog Posts for LinkedIn course is free.

Take the first step

The most important version of your bio in the digital world is your LinkedIn summary. If you only make one change as a result of reading this blog post, it should be to add a strong summary to your LinkedIn profile. Write the summary promoting yourself as an expert in your field, not as a job seeker. Here are some resources that can help:

Write the first draft of your profile in a word processing program to spell-check and ensure you are within the required character counts. Then copy/paste it into the appropriate sections of your LinkedIn profile. You will have a stronger profile that tells your story effectively with just an hour or two of work!

Contributed by guest blogger Judy Schramm. Schramm is the CEO of ProResource, a marketing agency that works with thought leaders to help them create a powerful and effective presence in social media. ProResource offers done-for-you services as well as social media executive coaching. Contact Judy Schramm at or 703-824-8482.


You decide – The Best Technical Training for You!



You can make a difference. Applied Technology Institute is scheduling new courses for September 2016 through July 2017. Please let us know which courses you would like to see on our schedule or brought to your facility.

·         If you have a group of 3 or more people, ATI can schedule an open enrollment course in your geographic area.

·         If you have a group of 8 or more, ATI can schedule a course on-site at your facility.

On-site training brings our experts to you — on your schedule, at your location. It also allows us to plan your training in advance and tailor classes directly to your needs.

You can help identify courses to suit your training needs and bring the best short courses to you! ATI courses can help you stay up-to-date with today’s rapidly changing technology.

Boost your career. Courses are led by world-class design experts. Learn from the proven best.

ATI courses by technical area:

Satellites & Space-Related courses

Acoustic & Sonar Engineering courses

Engineering & Data Analysis courses

Radar, Missiles and Combat Systems courses

Project Management and Systems Engineering courses


Contact us: or (410) 956-8805

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I thought that this was an awesome post about 100 entrepreneurs and their brief quotes.

I thought that this was an awesome post about 100 entrepreneurs and their brief quotes.

Examples include:

Billionaire CEOs of technology companies (ex. Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg)

Aggressive hedge fund managers (ex. George Soros, Ray Dalio)

World-class athletes and performers (ex. Serena Williams, Tiger Woods)

Highly-effective authors, actors, directors, and movie producers (ex. JK Rowling, Steven Spielberg)

Leading inventors and scientists (Edison, Ford)

Which quotes or people resonate with your life experience?



New INCOSE CSEP Handbook v4.0 to be Released! Pass the CSEP test Now!

New INCOSE Handbook – New CSEP Opportunities

The newest INCOSE SE Handbook (version 4.0) is expected this month (June 2015). Now is a great time to plan for the CSEP/ASEP exam best suited to you, because the transition gives you a choice!.

Insider Hint – Since the CSEP application process can be long and time intensive, sign up first to become an ASPE. Once you pass the exam, you then can take your time to complete the more demanding CSEP application process.

The Handbook was delayed to coincide with the recent release of ISO-15288. Now INCOSE will offer a transition period for you. From now through December 2015, the current exam will continue to be primary, based on Handbook v3.2.2. The new exam will become primary in January 2016 – but the new exam can also be available by special request as early as July.

ATI matches the transition with our Certified Systems Engineering Professional (CSEP) Preparation course. You can still take our 2-day course based on Handbook v3.2.2 on July 7-8, 2015 in Chantilly, VA. Or you can expand your knowledge with our new 3-day version based on Handbook 4.0 on September 24-26 (and forward). The new course will cover the significant expansion in the new Handbook (another 50 pages!) and will also include more exercises and activities to help you “seal in” the knowledge for the exam.

You can choose! Take the shorter course and get your ASEP/CSEP now, before the change – or take the longer course to get the full set of new knowledge and more learning activities. Either way, you advance your career by gaining the INCOSE certification!


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How to Be More Productive When You & Your Staff are Spread too Thin

I recommend the Clemson Conference to anyone working in training. I have attended many times over my career. This year for the first time I am giving a presentation. I am looking forward to sharing ideas with you at the August 24 – 26, 2014 Clemson Conference. As Founder and President of the Applied Technology Institute (ATIcourses), I have been in the continuing education/training “trenches” for 30 years. From a few dollars of seed money and starting with one associate in 1984, we have built ATI into a multi-million dollar technical and scientific training company with over 200 subject matter experts as instructors.


One of my key observations from 30 years of experience is that most training companies and university continuing education departments operate as small business units, usually with less than 50 employees. The training department at many companies is also small, perhaps 5 people at a typical company or government facility.  Everyone must be a knowledgeable “jack of all trades,” and at the same time “master of some.”


With a small staff, everyone must have clearly defined responsibilities, but just as important to success is having everyone crossed-trained to provide back-up. Cross-training and back-up is especially important as the work load increases, or as people change jobs or retire.  As we know many organizations face the retirement of key “Baby Boomers.” Are you and your team ready for the people who will likely leave in the next few years?

As people leave or retire, the existing staff is often asked to take on more responsibility. This means each one of us has to be more productive. Today, I thought I would share with you a working list of 20 ways I have tried to stay productive over the years.

  1. Get a Full Night’s Rest
  2. Wake-Up & Get-Up Really Early
  3. Eat a Banana or Fruit Mid-Afternoon Every Day
  4. Have Two Monitors on Your Desk
  5. Put House Plants in Your Office, but Try to Get Others to Water Them
  6. Work by a Window Whenever Possible
  7. Limit Your Email Use (or at least schedule your email time)
  8. Avoid Social Media Rabbit Holes
  9. Don’t Try to Multi-task
  10. Chew Some Gum or Drink Water Regularly
  11. Avoid Procrastination and Putting Off Projects. Prioritize Tasks Each Day
  12. Take Short Breaks Between Bouts of Work of About 1.5 Hours
  13. Use an App Like Toggle to Keep Track of Your Time Allocation
  14. Ditch Your Perfectionism
  15. Get Up Out of that Desk Chair and Stretch
  16. Say ‘I Don’t” When Declining an Offer vs. ‘I Can’t
  17. Measure People by the Size of Their Hearts, Not Their Resumes
  18. Know that Life is Not Fair & That You Will Fail Often. But Overcome That with Persistence
  19. When Times are Tough, Get Going and Face Down the Bullies and Other Inevitable Problems
  20. Never, Ever Give Up. If You Fail, View that as a Successful Learning Experience and Move On

I will elaborate on these ideas when we are together. I look forward to getting your ideas and sharing more of our experiences at the conference. So Register Now and join me and the Clemson Team in Chicago. If you want to attend, my contacts will receive a $200 discount. We have created a  special Collaborative Professional Development Registration Form

for the people who learned and register for the conference through ATIcourses.  See the following link:

ATIcourses colleagues can book at $495 rather than at  the regular price of $695. Please let me know if you are planning to attend and we can get together during the meeting.



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What Can Systems Engineers Learn From the Healthcare Roll-out Disaster?

Systems engineering, detailed planning and testing matter. ATIcourses offers a full range of Project Management and Systems Engineering courses. Read this article on the lessons learned (again) from the disaster of the healthcare web roll-out.  A big public failure focuses the mind.
Tenet #1 – Reduce complexity. Roll out products in phases, starting with a Minimal Viable Product (MVP).
Tenet #2 – Allow room for discovery and testing. With any software development project, especially one that works with existing components or legacy systems, it’s guaranteed that nobody will know all the potential issues up front.
Tenet #3 – Don’t let sales drive the product road-map.

Tenet #4 – Have a product manager. It’s mind boggling that with hundreds of people and several different companies working on the project, there was no central person, like a Product Manager, responsible for how the pieces fit together.

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Doing Business with DoD and All of Fed Government- Post-Sequestration

ATI has many customers who work for the government in defense or aerospace. We thought that this article was interesting and timely about working with agencies that are subject to sequester.
Doing Business with DoD and All of Fed Government- Post-Sequestration
July 3, 2013 By ChrisScott
Do you interact with government professionals in DoD or elsewhere in the federal government? This post may give you some important insights that may help.

Next time you make an appointment to meet with your DoD counterpart, you will most likely notice some very unpleasant changes. As you are well aware, sequestration has forced DoD to make some arbitrary cuts in ways that make no contribution towards meeting DoD goals and missions. By design, the sequestration is devoid of logic and planning, and it is breeding a sense of helplessness into an organization that prides itself on mission accomplishment.
First off: the furloughs themselves. Civil service employees in DoD are mandated to take 11 unpaid days off between now and 1 October, the end of the Fiscal Year. I have observed very few exemptions to the mandate. It appears that unless you are directly working in a combat zone, you will have to comply.
In the Navy, even the working capital employees of SPAWAR are required to furlough. Since these working capital employees are paid directly by the funds received for the projects they are working on, not paying them for these days does nothing to save USN money, and makes the programs at risk for having unobligated funds at the end of the year.
I have talked to numerous civil servants who are suffering the effects of this unanticipated 20% pay cut. You should know that when they do the math, they do NOT call it a 20% pay cut, but more than that. They have fixed expenses for their health care, insurance, retirement, etc. When the resulting 20% comes off the remainder, it is felt as more than 20% of the whole.
Secondly: the psychological effect. I have worked in DoD for many years, and I usually encounter the best and the brightest. These folks come to work with only one thing on their mind: doing the BEST job they can. They have always known that they have traded a lower income for a sense of National pride and a direct impact on the US defense mission.
Now they are being directed to work less hours and chastised that they must NOT work the full 40 hours. Their normal inclination is to suck it up and accomplish their job anyways. In fact, many of these employees are being told that there must be some pain to this policy. Some things must fall apart. For a force that prides itself on getting things done, this is having a very debilitating psychological impact.
As these employees sit back and watch their work go undone, it is only natural that they feel a sense of shame and frustration. They are being asked to do less. They are being told that their work is not important. They are being told that completing their work successfully is no longer a requirement.
I have always known that the most motivated employees are those that clearly understand their mission and have the tools and authorities to accomplish the goals. No amount of bonuses, time off, promotions, etc. can compete with the sense of well being achieved by doing a hard job well.
How this will unfold for next year is still unknown. A few organizations have obtained approval for reduction in forces (RIF). (Commander Naval Installations just announced that 745 civilian positions will be eliminated by 2014 ). It is clearly more effective to trim forces by 20%, vice rendering 100% of the forces 80% (or less) effective through furloughs.
Meanwhile, as you try to line up your meetings with DoD, some things you should know. Most commands are furloughing on Fridays. Some are bundling their Fridays with a Monday, to give them four-day weekends. During their furlough days, they are not reading/answering any emails or taking any phone calls. When they return, their emails and voice mails are backed up. If you time your request wrong, you will get lost in the backlog.
Things that were always hard are now a lot harder. DoD has not standardized their visitor requirements across the department. We all know that “boutique” solutions exist from organization to organization, usually a combination of Visitor Requests, JPAS submissions, etc. Making sure that all these t’s are crossed and i’s are dotted usually requires someone from within to connect the dots. On my recent swing through the PACOM AOR, I experienced two such disconnects. I usually bat 100%.
Finally, the meeting itself is subject to coordination across the participant organizations to find a time/date where all players are at work. With all the catching up that they are doing from their days off, and with the overwhelming sense of failure that comes from not completing your work, it’s increasingly difficult to line up productive sessions. I have found that one-on-one meetings are much more likely to be successful.
In conclusion, you will need to pay special attention to the above as you work with DoD this year. No matter how frustrated you are at the results, please remember to give a few words of encouragement. We are all in this together, whether we like it or not.

Detecting Quiet Diesel Electric Submarines

This is an article worth reading. You can also learn more by attending ATI’s sonar and acoustics courses.

This is a quote from the summary.

There are 39 nations operating a total of 400 diesel electric subs. Only three of these nations (China, Iran, North Korea) are likely to use their subs against the U.S. or its allies. China has fifty of these boats, Iran has three (plus 25 much smaller mini-subs) and North Korea has 20 (plus 50 much smaller mini-subs). So the U.S. has to worry about 73 diesel electric subs and 75 mini-subs. But about half the full size subs are elderly, obsolete, and noisy. The same can be said for at least half the mini-subs. That leaves about 36 full size subs and 40 mini-subs that are a clear threat (though the older stuff can be a threat if you get sloppy). That’s a lot of subs, and they make the East Asian coast and the Persian Gulf dangerous places for American warships.

Moreover, the North Korean and Iranian fleets (and governments) are in decline, while China is pouring more cash into their armed forces. If there’s any diesel-electric boats the U.S. Navy has to be extremely concerned about, it’s the Chinese. While China continues to try and develop world class nuclear subs, they are also moving ahead in creating world class diesel electric boats.