I would define myself as a people person. I have come to this conclusion from years of working in customer-facing environments (recruitment and retail), but also through studying International Business and Spanish at university, where a year living in Spain taught me how to adapt to different cultures, social norms and business nuances.
Moving into the world of IT and Cloud computing, has brought a number of challenges – some days I think it’s more difficult adapting to this world than learning Spanish! From an outsider’s perspective, I have begun learning about an industry that, in my opinion, makes itself inaccessible to outsiders. It was George Eliot, author of Middlemarch who once said, “It is a narrow mind which cannot look at a subject from various points of view.”
[easy-tweet tweet=”For outsiders to be accepted into the #cloud industry, it needs to evolve says @katewright24″ user=”comparethecloud” usehashtags=”no”]
Having now travelled around Europe at various cloud and IT conferences, it strikes me that for outsiders to be accepted into this industry, it needs to evolve. This evolution should include (but not be limited to): a correction of female representation and the loss of acronyms and jargon that are simply there to confuse and baffle audiences.
One area in which I believe this evolution is beginning to take place is the emergence of CMOs or ‘Chief Marketing Officer’ who is a user of cloud and associated technologies. The arrival of this role in the industry has enabled us to break down the barrier between the ‘techies’ and the ‘commercials’. The CMOs must truly understand the technology, in a way that they are able to broadcast it into the public domain so it is understandable to the end user, thus eliminating the annoying IT-babble attached to it. It has allowed for business level discussions to be representative of the CMOs function at the board level.
The rise of the CMO should be a wake up call to every person located within the traditional IT function
The rise of the CMO should be a wake up call to every person located within the traditional IT function. This wake up call is directed at those technically-minded individuals, telling them that if, “they truly understand technology, they should have the ability to explain it clearly.” If you cannot simplify the technology to me, then you must be lost in your own myriad jargon.
As a millennial, I have grown up using the internet and have no recollection of the days of just four channel TV – to be honest, not being able pause and record live TV through my Sky+ box is a very distant memory! My generation from day one have been exposed to the ‘consumerisation’ of technology, where applications and services come ready-to-use, hidden away behind amazingly designed interfaces.
[easy-tweet tweet=”If you truly understand technology, you should have the ability to explain it clearly” user=”katewright24, comparethecloud” usehashtags=”no”]
The wider point I am trying to address is that without the simplification of jargon and acronyms, the professional discourse will be ignored in favour of a business minded individual.
Allow me to offer an example (thanks to Andrew Mclean my CTO for explaining the tech).
When I search on Google I really don’t care that “Google has massively parallel databases that have abstracted the hardware layer and provides for searching based on a combination of worldwide data centres and smart algorithms and databases shared over many nodes.”
In fact I just want my search results please (preferably without the advertisements but that’s a whole new topic).
The point of this blog is not a moan, but to try and help the IT and cloud industry understand that it is isolating itself from what could be a very large fan-base.
The disruptive economy is offering the cloud and IT person a chance to become the hero
The cloud and IT person has a chance with this changing and disrupting economy to become the hero both internal and external to an organisation. Big Data, Analytics, IOT, cloud are all combining into a central focus that will enable business to be disrupted like never before. Make sure the IT function becomes central to that role. The first stage of this is to step outside of IT and learn other functions, disciplines and industries.
Any organisation can be affected by collective madness and the lack of ability to execute on a wider perspective. Cloud and IT’s propensity for being introspective makes them the perfect industry to be affected by this.