Speaking a common language with your leaders can accelerate business outcomes while turbo-charging your career. Are you ready to take that step?
See if you recognize this picture.
The IT Guy’s Perspective
You can design and configure a small to medium sized network with finesse. You understand the security requirements, routing protocols and quality of service to ensure that all users have the bandwidth they need. You anticipate problems before they arise and you are quite capable of circumventing them before the users even know there was an issue.
You don’t expect accolades for this – it’s your job. It’s what you get paid to do and you do it well.
But you are so much more than that. You have kept up to date on the latest technology trends and you know about the latest in hardware and software capabilities. In fact, you can think of at least five projects that you would love to implement in your office that would improve the working environment and efficiency of all employees.
The problem - no one listens.
Management doesn’t understand technology and talking to them is like teaching calculus to a fifth grader. Its frustrating and more often than not, you just give up.
The Managers point of view
For people that are supposed to be so smart, IT guys can be idiots. All they can think about is zeros and ones and speeds and feeds. When they speak to you, all you hear is “blah blah blah gigabits.. blah blah jabber something, cloud this, redundant that..”. You don’t want to look like an idiot, so you smile and say something pointless like “Sounds interesting” only to walk away shaking your head.
The problem is, you are floundering. Your competitors are nipping at your heels and you need to innovate to survive. They seem to be moving ahead while your organization stands still.
You need more intelligence in your networks, not simply faster but smarter. You need the network to facilitate people working together more collaboratively while being mobile.
If only your IT guys understood that.
I suppose there are two possible solutions to this problem.
- Get the manager to learn something about technology (ok, you can stop laughing now)
- Learn to speak the language of your manager and business decision makers.
Option 2 appears to be the only valid solution - but how do you get started?
Thankfully, Cisco has recognized this exact scenario and has come to the rescue with the Enterprise IT Business Skills Specialist Certification. It will provide you with the skills and knowledge needed to;
- capture business needs.
- assess and deploy technology options from a business context
- understand an IT solution's return on investment (ROI) and total cost of ownership (TCO).
- influence and communicate effectively with business leaders.
If the picture I painted earlier sounds familiar, I recommend that you share this blog with your manager. You can work together to find the course location nearest you and get yourself to class.
As technology evolves, being competitive is a crucial business differentiator, and ensuring technical staff can work well with business leaders is what will take your organization forward - or leave it behind.
Becoming an influencer will ensure your organization stays ahead. It will give you the career satisfaction and accolades that come when your management is not only “listening", but hears, understands and implements what you have to say!