Listen. Ask. Listen. Recommend.
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to chat with an amazing manager at a very successful distribution company.
The manager called to ask if I would give them some quotes on some very important IT security tasks that she needed done quickly.I listened to the request and let her know that we could take care of the issues. Then, I asked her if it would be okay if I stopped by to discuss the problems in a little more depth. With some reservation, she agreed to a quick in-person meeting.
When I arrived at her office, I immediately noticed an immaculate shop with technology being used as a competitive advantage. It was evident by the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) all over the facility that the systems were tightly integrated. Awesome!
We sat down, and I asked her to give me a brief overview of the problem she needed handled and how I could help. This was when I began to understand what was going on.
This business executive could do many of the tasks that she needed done all by herself. She was really smart and very IT capable.
But here’s the problem: The routine IT management and maintenance tasks that should be handled on a day-by-day basis were not being attended to. Problems were piling up, causing an extreme amount of pressure on her. She’d asked many IT firms to help, but she was getting terrible results.
After a few more questions with reluctant answers, I recommended that it may be better to let a team take care of maintenance, troubleshooting, and projects on an agreement basis. This would take the load off this very valuable human resource.
At first, my recommendation was not taken too well. She just wanted the problems fixed. But, after a little contemplation, she agreed that she had never thought of taking care of IT the way I’d suggested.
I am positive this distribution company will get even better results from IT AND the operations executive. This type of conversation is absolutely great to have!
About Marty Kaufman
Marty Kaufman is Founder and President of Accent Computer Solutions, Inc., a Southern California-based innovator in IT thinking. He got his start in the world of Big Data as Manager of Information Systems for General Dynamics. He earned his B.S. degree in Computer Information Systems from California Polytechnic University, Pomona in 1985 and started Accent Computer Solutions as a consulting firm in 1987. He has spent his entire career researching and implementing Information Technology strategies and processes to help his clients reduce the cost and risk of IT.
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