High quality parttime CTO services by Innovationvista? Recent incidents should serve as sufficient motivation: UK National Health System – 16 hospitals’ systems were completely shut down by the WannaCry virus, tallying a cost of 100M in 2017. Atlanta – the city government was crippled by ransomware, disabling the city’s ability to operate or fund services in 2018. Marriott/Starwood – 500 million customer records breached in 2018, including birthdates and passport details. Capital One – 100 million customers credit card details and histories were breached in July 2019.
But what are companies to do who who can’t afford the escalated compensation packages demanded by experienced C-level IT leaders, despite having the same needs for this expertise? Most courses of action involve a trade-off either accepting less experience than ideally wanted and/or higher compensation costs for the position. With any approach, it is a difficult challenge for companies with limited budgets to get the experience they truly need for these critical decisions and responsibilities. Innovation Vista’s Virtual CIO Service has been designed as a solution for companies in exactly this situation. Explore more details at https://innovationvista.com/virtual-cio/.
A trick any CEO should know about cybersecurity: Achieving information security compliance with one or more government regulatory standards for information security (i.e. ISO 27001, NIST 800-171, HIPAA, NYDFS, etc.) is good, but not sufficient to ensure real cybersecurity. It is vital that CEOs establish the appropriate cybersecurity “tone at the top” for their respective organization, regarding the importance of information security and how cybersecurity is everyone’s shared responsibility in a truly digital world. Establishing an organizational “culture of cybersecurity” has proven to be one of the best defenses against cyber adversaries. It is the people, not the technology, which can either be an organization’s greatest defense, or its weakest link against a cyber-attack.
The world is becoming increasingly personalized. Frequent flier numbers and customer membership programs enable companies to track consumers’ buying patterns; social media platforms and digital marketing channels enable them to know even more about our preferences and lives. The door has been opened to inappropriate uses of this information, as evidenced by the “fake news” and Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandals from the 2016 election. But far more commonly, companies are using customer data in legitimate to personalize their communications with customers, with significant results. Customers are happy for you to know about them. According to Accenture, 83% of consumers are willing to share their data in order to enable a personalized B2C experience, and 91% say it actually impacts their buying habits. For B2B purposes, companies have long known there is easy access to public data about them, so any gain in efficiency is welcomed from suppliers who make use of that information (ideally with internal data as well – see below) to streamline the experience for their clients.
The challenge today is that the pace of change is accelerating at an exponential rate, so we’re dealing with more changes coming faster at us than ever before. It’s one thing to acknowledge that and to accept the challenge of dealing with these changes in both our personal and professional lives – it’s quite another to realize the stark truth that this shocking pace of change is the slowest any of us will see for the rest of our lives. It’s strange to realize we will one day look back and see 2020 as a year in which the world dealt with relatively few changes. Considering COVID and technological change, political and social winds, medical and scientific innovation, it hardly seems possible; and yet, that is a truth embedded in the exponential change acceleration we’re experiencing. It calls for a complete revolution in how we think about change itself. See a few extra details on stabilizing it.
We keep this level of engagement throughout project teams. We utilize only skilled staff with actual real-world experience to execute projects. Our larger competitors recruit heavily from universities and have first year associates out billing clients within a month. Our bill-rates are significantly lower across the board for all seniority levels and skill-sets, as we don’t have to carry the overhead of those larger firms. (We don’t sponsor pro golfers or tennis championships, etc…)
Salespeople are experts at what they do, and they know what tools help them do it best. Few professions have their compensation aligned so well as salespeople, so I don’t believe for a minute that the effort at learning a new system would be a hindrance for sales teams convinced that a new CRM was really going to boost their results. Most sales people are willing to work hard, they are motivated to invest in anything that will put money in their own pocket, and smart enough to learn any tool that meets that criteria. I believe the resistance to adoption and usage of CRMs often runs much deeper, and requires a commitment from the highest levels of leadership to resolve…
I find that although everyone is slammed with workload in most companies, given the chance to contribute innovative ideas, they’ll find mental energy to devote to it. Busy-ness is not the same thing as creative exhaustion. As noted above, the best way to kickoff a brainstorm is to gather initial thoughts individually anyway. Give team members time to surface ideas over a few weeks, and their subconscious mind will work on the problem. Prime the pump with some example areas for major savings or new revenue – don’t just ask them to “submit great ideas”. Of the ideas submitted, my suggestion is to identify those which have the potential to be self-funding within a year of launch, i.e. which increase revenue or save costs annually at least as large as the project costs. Most of my clients are surprised to find multiple such options which are worth exploring; technology is maturing fast, and for all its negative aspects the pandemic is also creating opportunities for significant changes in how business is done. I suggest creating cross-functional teams to collaborate on each idea, as noted above. Even if staff bandwidth is limited, each person can hopefully participate on one such project, which might involve a one-hour weekly meeting/conference call, with reasonable expectations for each member’s time investment between calls. I’ve found that even if people are busy with “normal work”, they often have creative energy and are excited to participate in something like this on the side, over lunch, etc. Read a few more details on https://innovationvista.com/monetize/.