Tag Strategy

Tag Strategy

Paradigm Shifters – Hire a Junior to Lead Your Company?

Tags: , , , , , Advice, Strategy
photo credit: Hamed Saber via photopin cc

photo credit: Hamed Saber via photopin cc

First of all, there will always be a paradigm. There might be a state where conflicting paradigms are competing for supremacy but a time without paradigms is not possible.

Having recognised how your own expectations and therefore paradigms influence your beliefs about the world, you can use this ability to advance.

Assuming you have discovered the state of severe discomfort where your old paradigm does not fit anymore, what kind of leader or in general human resources are necessary to complete the paradigm shift? For instance, why do the big strategy consultancies employ often people with backgrounds that often seem counter-intuitive to the business that are in? Read More

Why Generation Z Does not Want to Work for Big Corporates

Tags: , , , , , , , Advice, Assess, Business, Human Capital, Strategy
2013 Deloitte Report: Exploring Strategic Risk

2013 Deloitte Report: Exploring Strategic Risk

As a small but growing consultancy, we receive an increasing amount of applications on our vacancies with an increase in the quality of applicants.

This is an interesting trend and constitutes a shift in the perception of applicants towards big multinational corporates. As Maslow outlined in his famous Hierarchy of Needs, the need for self-actualization is most highly desired but often not fulfilled in a junior position within a large corporation. Generation Z, 18-30, tends to value this criterium with an increasing importance. This is one of the reasons to choose a startup with all its risks over the safety of a big MNC because you are often given freedom in how you are doing things and often partly what you do, e.g. Google’s 20 per cent set aside time per employee for own projects.

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Out of Control Projects

Tags: , , Advice, Assess, Business
photo credit: wwarby via photopin cc

photo credit: wwarby via photopin cc

While writing the previous true story about the real world of IT financing, I was inspired to share another horror story that I’ve encountered in my years in IT. It begins with being sent in to sort out a major counterparty risk project in one of the banks that was supposed to be delivering a solution for Basel 2 compliance.  What the project was is probably irrelevant to the story but anyone spending money on a project that at that point had been running for 18 months and not delivering anything – spending in excess of 10 million Euros per annum – must ask serious questions.  It quickly became clear that the project had only 4 internal staff with more than 50 externals.  Cynically, one could say that the externals were milking the programme for whatever they could get.  Slashing the project to 15 people delivered more in 6 months than 60 people had in 18.  Adding a proper steering committee and asking real questions rather than the previous “nodding dogs” meant real focus on value for money.

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Ten Questions To Ask Your IT Department

Tags: , , , , , Business, CIO, Strategy
photo credit: Defence Images via photopin cc

photo credit: Defence Images via photopin cc

Following on from my previous blog about a near disaster, the following are ten questions to ask your IT department about how they run their finances, and may come in useful when planning an IT strategy.

IT managers hate finances. Ask any IT person what they think about accountants and accounting and you will probably get a very rude answer.  Let’s face it, technical people do not like to ask questions about money, they just want to get on with projects, solutions and technology.  In many firms the CIO or CTO is promoted to a level where they have control over significant spend but the promotion is often based on their technical knowledge as much as management capability.  Maybe 30 per cent of any spend in a firm can be concentrated directly and indirectly these days in IT or systems related service – so ignoring money is not an option. Not having strong governance over how money is spent on IT is a risk to the firms bottom line.

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The Real World of IT Financing – A True Story

Tags: , , , , , , , , Assess, Business, Strategy, Uncategorized
photo credit: Steve Snodgrass via photopin cc

photo credit: Steve Snodgrass via photopin cc

Inspired by recent projects being undertaken by cibsys, I started thinking about some war stories I have heard through the years. The following blog post looks at an example of what could and does go wrong if you don’t ask important questions about IT financials.

The outline of the story was to resolve an IT budget crisis, where the COO was forecasting 10% over, dealing with figures in excess of ten million. In other words, there was a pressing need for fast remedial action to prevent disaster.  The regional CIO was a brilliant technical lead with fantastic ideas, who delivered amazing software surrounded by like-minded technical staff.  The one lonely voice in his management team who was screaming to be heard was his business manager who could see the pending crisis of budget and funding but was not being listened to.  The reality was that the forecast was way off, there was no real spend tracking and that the ledgers actuals were so far behind the reality of spend that no one really knew what was being spent and where the money was going.   There was dire need for proper departmental financial controls and proper forecasting in addition to the basic ones in finance department.

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IT Strategy and User Behaviour

Tags: , , , , , , Assess, Data Centre, Strategy
photo credit: redjar via photopin cc

photo credit: redjar via photopin cc

Many CIOs will look at their IT Strategy as portfolio optimisation, choosing the most effective tools for each area of the business. However, an effective strategy with a holistic approach should also attempt to look at the way the tools are used and adapt the behaviour within the organisation.  In this blog entry I am going to look at a couple of examples of ways that behaviours can influence IT cost-effectiveness. Let us start with a topic that is driving up costs in all organizations worldwide – storage.  We are all guilty of poor storage management, myself included.  For a simple presentation for the team, how many of us add a photo to the cover page of our PowerPoint presentations? Do we really need that degree of prettiness to create an impact? Perhaps for an external presentation but for our own team? Not really.

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Aligning Business and IT Strategy

Tags: , , , , , Process Design, Strategy, Uncategorized
photo credit: anneh632 via photopin cc

photo credit: anneh632 via photopin cc

Recent surveys suggest that business strategy and success is increasingly being underpinned by a successful IT strategy.  I have suggested many times on this blog ways and means to achieve an effective understanding of an IT strategy and landscape, but how do you assure your IT strategy is aligned to your business strategy?

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10 Things to Think About for Your Data Centre Strategy

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , Advice, Business, CIO, Strategy
photo credit: torkildr via photopin cc

photo credit: torkildr via photopin cc

Working with a mixture of companies of all sizes I have seen everything from the demands of the immediate fail-over always on, fault tolerant architectures of the real time trading businesses to one mid-sized client who had the servers in a cupboard at the office and regularly used to lose their systems when the cleaners unplugged them to vacuum the floor (and I am not joking!)

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