Important Takeaways From The Gartner ITExpo

The Gartner ITExpo in Barcelona is one the largest gatherings of CIOs and Senior IT Executives in the world. A gathering of close to 6000 like-minded people, who have the opportunity to attend seminars, 1-to-1 Gartner analyst meetings, IT Vendor sessions, interviews with key senior Executives from the mega-vendors and much more. For me, it was 4 days where I could get my head focused on the strategic rather the day-to-day operational side of my role. 

With over 50 pages of notes from the various events attended, many points starred for emphasis and some even double starred ‘actions required’, it would be madness to try and summarise all the items noted. Instead, I am adopting the approach of sharing what I believe was my number one take-away message. This came from the first keynote speech entitled “Who Can You Trust?” by Rachel Botsman.

Some background info on Rachel can be found here and the one key take-away, even though there were others, is summarised below:

As a society, our trust in organisations is at an all-time low.

In Government, we have events such as the MPs Expenses Scandal, The Grenfell Tower fire and the current round of media speculation on sexual harassment in Whitehall all negatively impacting our trust in central and local Government.

In Business events such as the Financial crisis of 2008; Apple, Google and Amazon’s elaborate financial planning to minimise tax payments; and disclosures made in the Panama Papers are losing the trust of the public.

Even Religious and Not-for-Profit organisations have come under scrutiny. Who remembers Kids Club financial mis-regularities and Church leaders being named in child abuse cases?

The Importance of Remaining Trustworthy

So, why does this bother me? Well if trust is nose diving how do we ensure here at Peak Indicators that we always buck the trend? How do we remain a trusted supplier, a trusted partner and a trusted employer? How do we remain ‘Trustworthy’?

 

The good news is that there are three traits of trustworthiness that we as an organisation need to always keep focused on: 

Competence: Ensuring that all of our resources have both the technical and soft skills to exceed customer expectations. We have obtained various certifications and specializations from our various technology partners over the years, and this needs to continue. We will continue to ensure that we develop our Graduate and Internal training approaches so that we are always ahead of the curve when it comes to cloud-based business analytics skills. Our focus is to achieve a ‘Continuous Learning’ culture across our entire organisation.

Reliability: Ensuring that the way in which we engage with our customers, partners and employees is consistent, effective and efficient. Our investment in our internal systems, collaboration tools, intranet and soft skills training (such as Agile methodologies) is all focused on ensuring consistency and reliability. Our objective is that we should provide the same high level of service independent of who, when or how you engage with Peak Indicators.

Honesty is really all about integrity and intentions. Our main aim is to develop long term win/win relationships based on transparency. We do provide customers access to financial and project-related metrics if asked, but in return we expect our customers to be transparent and willing to engage in sensible conversations early, so that we can resolve small issues rather than wasting time, money and energy when they have become large issues later. That is why we:

a) Like the Agile approach with daily scrums - everyone knows what is happening.

b) Do not have commissioned sales guys. We do not want people financially incentivised, it’s about building the right solution not maximising an individual’s salary.

c) Are continuing our investment in Senior Architects and Account Managers who can understand our customers’ real needs and have the skills and experience to support them in their analytics’ journey.

In summary, I believe that we are a good company, but as Chief Operations Officer I do not want to stand still. The focus has always been to be a trusted supplier, trusted partner and trusted employer; so we will continue to invest in our resources in those key areas of competence, reliability and honesty.


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