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Tips for the Technology Professional

Tip 2021-04
Driving Metrics with a Purpose?

It's not enough to have metrics, they need to be designed to tell you more about the health of your business. Each metric should reveal a strength or weakness of your business operation and therefore be used to drive change. When a weakness is revealed, get to work on strengthening it or pivoting in some way if it can't be repaired. When a strength is revealed, one that has significant business impact, double down on further improvement, don't rest on current level of excellence, raise the bar. Metrics are many things, but one of the things they should not be is a waste of time doing math. Check out Metrics

Tip 2021-03
You cannot manage what you do not know?

A commonly heard adage that speaks to the heart of marketing effectiveness. How many times do you see advertisements that bear no resemblance to how you would choose a product? Establishing metrics for overall marketing performance is a key deliverable of a marketing leader. Metrics can have a surprisingly large impact on the overall results of the Company as well. Effective metrics, ones that the team would take action on based on how they change, are difficult to come up with (there are some basic ones though). A common mistake is to analyze marketing effectiveness to death -- generating all kinds of metrics, analysis and reports that largely show there is business activity, but not necessarily any value coming from it. Check out Metrics

Tip 2021-02
Are You Ready to Risk Growing?

Financial growth is a measured event, more revenues this month than last month, voila - growth! But growth alone does not mean you are ready to take on the risks associated with growing - more expenses that are not easily wound back if growth were to stop unexpectedly. You are ready to risk growing when your revenues come from programmatic efforts that are detached from prior success that came from personal connections, one time large deals that are difficult to repeat, customer wins that are out of band from the sales playbook. Once you securely can generate revenue from programmatic efforts of sales and marketing, you are ready to take on the risk of growth. More importantly, the people supporting your business financially -- investors -- should be eager to see you grow and willing to risk money to help make it happen.

Tip 2021-01
Virtual Retention

A smart colleague of mine remarked how staff retention will become more challenging the longer workers remain virtual as a normal part of their work lives. While working virtual must be an accepted part of how we all work together (there are very strong benefits to be gained), virtual workers are challenged to bond with their work mates without some level of regular physical interaction. Getting to know your team exclusively through a 3x5 video frame on ZOOM is a necessity during a pandemic, but changing jobs can become as easy as clicking out of a virtual meeting. The ties that often affect our job decisions are reduced to a few -- unfortunately, salary moves way ahead of other considerations.

Retention is hard to develop when working exclusively virtual. You need to be in regular contact with all team members, schedule virtual team bonding events, show sincere interest in their lives and most importantly, make sure they are surviving the virtual experience in the way it is intended. Do not assume everyone knows how to work effectively when isolated in their bedroom or home office, do not lose key employees because you just assume a zoom smile means job happiness.