Enterprise Strategist with experience on both the buy side and sell side. My experience as a leader in both corporate IT and consulting gives me the unique perspective of having defined strategy and led implementations in over 100 different organizations throughout my career, ranging from 4 employees to 400,000, in a host of different industries and geographies. I've also had the experience of being part of 3 mergers/acquisitions, adding further to my repertoire of skills.
As an avid learner and proponent of job rotation, I started my career in IT support and infrastructure, eventually moving into process design and software development, along the way growing my technology and leadership skills. I completed my MBA in 2014, rounding out my skillset with additional business knowledge and capabilities.
I believe strongly in sharing knowledge with my colleagues and the greater IT community, frequently presenting internally and externally at events and conferences, sharing on social media, in blogs and podcasts. I am also a member of several industries and social media influencer networks. As a practitioner of servant leadership, I have won multiple awards for hiring and developing talented individuals.
Tell us about your background and how you developed your social media influence?
My background is in technology infrastructure architecture and engineering. I initially started using social media for business purposes while I was studying for my MBA. I was researching new technologies and I found that unlike looking at content from journalists or analysts, social media gives a raw feed of what top technologists are thinking about today. After a while I started joining in myself, adding my take on various topics.
What are the key topics you’re most passionate about?
My key topic of interest is around the people part of technology. I’ve found that over the years technology has become more powerful and easier to use, but people present the same challenges as ever. Politics, process, and strategy frequently affect success more than individual technologies. I am, of course, still interested in technology as well: security, automation, and workforce agility being ones I am most interested in right now.
Which influencers influence you within those key topics?
When it comes to people and strategy, Simon Wardley is the main person who opened my eyes to the fact that so many people think they know what they are doing, but they typically just end up repeating patterns that they think made them or others successful in the past rather than really thinking deeply about where things are headed in the future. All of the CIOs that participate in #CIOChat are great, Mikko Hypponen on Security, Aaron Levie, CEO of Box, is another one that really gets enterprise technology, and he’s a must-follow for me.
What is your social media routine? Do you have any daily habits that you’d recommend?
I had avoided scheduling posts for a long time, but I have found that to be very valuable now that I have moved to London and have connections across so many time zones. When I am reading articles in my free time, I find interesting ones and schedule them for post throughout the week rather than blasting them all at once. One thing I make sure to do, however, is make sure I am adding my own voice into the mix. I don’t want to be a billboard of content, I want to share knowledge and receive knowledge from others. Interaction is key.
Where do you start in finding relevant content to share with your audience?
I rely heavily on Google News, as well as content others post on Twitter or LinkedIn. I used to blog more frequently than I do now, but I have recently started a podcast with a discussion format where I take on various enterprise technology topics with top people in the industry, most of them active on social media as well.
Do you receive any support or encouragement from your organization?
I recently made the top 25 in several categories of Onalytica’s study into global consultancy employees, and I have received a huge amount of support and encouragement. I plan to run an internal training soon on how to start engaging on social media to help others who are interested in getting started.
What motivates you to post on social media?
For years I lived in a small city and there weren’t many forums available to discuss issues with peers other than attending conferences, which was expensive and time consuming. Social media opens up the ability to share ideas with people all across the world, in any industry and any profession that you can imagine. I am constantly looking to learn, and social media has introduced me to many great people and ideas over the years.
What tend to be your most successful posts?
My most successful posts tend to be ones where I have a strong opinion on the topic at hand. It’s easy to take the middle road or present information without any opinion, but there are some topics I feel strongly about and I am not afraid to share my opinions on those, even when I know not everyone will agree. It’s important to find your voice, but you do have to be open to new ideas at the same time.
What do you feel was your breakthrough moment?
Several years ago I was invited to a private event with some top thought leaders to discuss key topics in enterprise technology. I would have never gotten that invite if not for social media, and have gone on to receive many more invites and forms of recognition over the years that I never would have gotten if not for social media.
What advice would you give to someone just starting out?
Interact with people – don’t worry about who you are, who they are, how many followers anyone has. Just share your thoughts and listen to others.