For most organizational owners and operators, it would be difficult to say with a straight face that IT isn't extremely important for their thriving organization's success.
We live in a time that tech and online presence isn't just a luxury, but an absolute necessity.
Depending on the perspective and the role of the one judging IT, however, it can be demonized as a sunk cost or necessary evil. And, in some instances can even get unfairly cast into the bucket of "inflexible" and "non-productive" operations.
All too often, sales and marketing are given the birth right and the privilege, while outsourced IT and/or in-house finance are stuck serving and cleaning like a modern day Cinderella.
Yet, for those that know the value that IT brings, it could be argued that IT services provide some of the most vital support in our modern day business configurations. For example, by:
- Making sure email is running and working properly for speedy communication.
- Without email, employees might be subjected to longer than necessary phone calls. Or even worse—sending communication through the postal service—now known as "snail mail" for a reason!
- Keeping internet and networking systems running like clockwork to keep offices operating at maximum capacity.
- If systems fail, without your IT guy or gal; you would be stuck with Debbie from the copy room trying to solve complicated server error and connection issues. Scary thought, right!?!
- Making tweaks to websites without costing the business owner a small fortune.
- If you have ever been hit with astronomical outsourced website consultant fees to change a simple "copy/paste" website solution, then you probably know what we are talking about.
- Keeping company data safe from hackers.
- Want to chance you or your clients data? We thought not.
Cyber-security breaches, rebooting walkthroughs, and longer than expected wait times can have employees bad mouthing techies and sending business owners venturing out to seek seemingly easier, albeit more risky software.
This is why IT needs an expedient facelift!
So, how can IT professionals change the meaning that organizations have towards their services?
1. Learn to communicate to companies, that ALL organizations are participating in the race to shift to the digital space.
As companies embrace and create new technologies, IT sectors are the most fit professionals for solving the host of challenges that come with this shift. Which most assuredly includes data security!
2. IT professionals or consultants need to ensure that they learn as much as possible about the businesses that they are assisting.
This means diving as deep as they can into the business' goals, the KPIs, and all of the subtle friction points, so that they can apply the most suitable solutions to the company's most glaring problems.
Remember, you are there to help grow the business, not just put out departmental fires.
3. IT professionals need to drastically improve their communication skills.
Techies are notorious for having lack luster communication skills. Dispelling this stereotype with better communication and listening skills will go a long way to improving your partnerships and perceived worth.
-Ask questions that unveil solutions individual employees/clients actually need to perform their company roles.
- Providing customized solutions that fit each individual, that you work with will go a long way to letting them know that you were listening to them. This is very important for building strong relationships.
- What may seem like a simple "copy/paste" request to your non-technical client/co-worker, may need some further explanation. Be patient, and walk through the journey with them.
-Listen without judgement.
- Offer alternative solutions to requests, if you deem them unsuitable. Don't insult someone by chuckling or simply saying "no" even if it might seem like an outlandish or ignorant request to you. Your job is to help, so lift them up to your level with solid explanations.
-Communication with facts.
- Make sure your numbers and data exhibit your value. As the adage goes, "the numbers don't lie." If IT is helping to grow the business, most stakeholders will start whistling a different tune in regard to IT's relevance.
By following these three simple steps, IT professionals will find that they can begin to seamlessly mesh with the stakeholders of the organizations. And, the main advantage of this merger is that the business flourishes because of it.
With IT/business alignment comes a clear and successful path to digital transformation company-wide.
When a company and all its constituents visualize the security of their most sensitive data assets, how much more empowered their people are in driving the bottom line, and how critical IT is to the stability and foundational success of the business in our cloud-driven world; IT will surely be viewed in a different light as opposed to lurking in the shadows.
Do your IT services need a facelift? We can help.