Tech Leadership for the Sustainable Win


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Presented at the all day workshop at ConnectingUp in Melbourne.

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  • Flickr photo:
  • Flickr photo: And technology can also make us less efficient in this way. Sometimes, it’s just fun, right? But mostly, technology has made us incredibly efficient. We can email, share documents, and access our data in ways that let us just get more done. Especially,
  • These. I remember when we were first able to print mailing labels. Changed. My. World. And this is where we sat regarding technology for a good long decade. Technology was all about making things easier, more efficient. Unless of course, it was
  • Flickr photo: Broken. Right? How many of you, on any given day, think about technology in your organization if it’s not broken? Exactly. Technology, for the last decade, has been about the machines that we buy, and maintain, and replace. It’s been a cost center, and a necessary evil.
  • Flickr photo: What we’ve done is treat technology just like a paper clip. Really expensive paper clips! But technology isn’t like paper clips. It’s tough to argue that paper clips contribute to your mission, but technology can.
  • Flickr photo: We can now use technology to directly serve our mission: It’s laptops in the field so that you can do data collection better. It’s text messaging programs. It’s list servs that connect your stakeholders.
  • Courtesy of Edward Granger-Happ
  • I mean strategy in two ways: First, having a strategy for how you use technology, but it’s also something that should tie to your organization’s strategy. Here are some things to think about when building your strategy. You’ll want to think about your: Objectives Audience Content Tools How you’ll measure success WHY is articulating this strategy important? Notice that TOOLS is not the starting place.
  • Flickr Photo: A good strategy is going to prepare you for all parts of the project, not just the planning, or the implementation.
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  • Flickr photo: If you can’t articulate how the project ties to your organization’s strategy, it’s not worth doing.
  • Now, restate your objective so it is “SMART” – Specific Measurable Attainable Result-Focused Time-based You can use this method for large or small objectives Outputs vs. Impact.
  • Flickr Photo: Every technology project has an audience – it could be the end users who will be doing the data entry in a new database. Its could be the public that will be using your new website. It could be both – end users administering a piece of technology and a public consuming parts of it.
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  • Photo: At this point, when you’re developing your strategy, you’re not looking to spec out every feature that a project will have, or exactly how it will work in detail. You want to hit the major highlights. That doesn’t mean you don’t want to do some research. You do.
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  • Flickr Photo: So you’ve set objectives tied to your organization’s strategy. You know all the audiences you need to design the project for. Now you need to build the project out in a way that gives you the solution you need today, and that will support your work for as long as possible. You don’t want to do this all over in six months!
  • Photo: Now that you know more about what your audiences need, you can identify some of the requirements for tools. You don’t have to name names here, but rather the top-line features that you’re looking for. Depending on what the project is, you’ll do a much deeper business process analysis and perhaps an RFP process that you will use to choose a database or a website management tool, for example. You’ll also need to identify any limiting factors – are there specific technologies you have to adhere to? It’s important to document your constraints as well as your wishes.
  • Flickr Photo: The last phase of the plan has to account for what will happen once the project is up and running. What do you do once you move in?
  • Photo: Completing the project is not the success. Getting your staff and stakeholders to use it is the ultimate sign of success. Accounting for training and support in your strategy will
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  • Photo: ROI is one part math
  • Photo: ROI is also one part storytelling
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  • Tech Leadership for the Sustainable Win

    1. 1. Technology Leadership for the Sustainable win
    2. 2. What do you do?
    3. 3. I share knowledge.
    4. 15. What do you do?
    5. 16. We recruit volunteers to train guide dogs
    6. 17. Strategy: define it.
    7. 18. Start with Strategy A technology strategy helps your organization think through objectives, audience, content, tools, measurement and training to support your organization’s overall strategy
    9. 20. ARCHITECT YOUR SUCCESS <ul><li>Step One: </li></ul>
    10. 21. Objective <ul><li>What do you want to accomplish? </li></ul><ul><li>Describe how your objective supports or links to a specific goal from your organization’s strategic plan </li></ul>
    11. 22. Implement a system to track volunteers
    12. 23. Implement a system to track volunteers to increase retention
    13. 24. Give Your Objective An IQ Test!
    14. 25. Implement a system to track volunteers to increase retention
    15. 26. Implement a system to track volunteer activity and help volunteer managers increase retention by 15% by year-end
    16. 27. Audience(s) <ul><li>Who will be involved in the final project? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the needs and wants of each group? </li></ul><ul><li>What do they know or believe about your project? What will resonate with them? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the action you need them to take? </li></ul>
    18. 33. Volunteer Managers Executive Director Board Interns Interns Interns Interns
    20. 38. Volunteer Managers: B. Record each volunteer interaction C. More retention = less need to recruit D. Volunteer management is about face to face interactions, not data E. Observe volunteer manager bringing in a new volunteer E. Observe volunteer manager bringing in a new volunteer E. Observe volunteer manager bringing in a new volunteer E. Observe volunteer manager bringing in a new volunteer E. Observe volunteer manager bringing in a new volunteer
    21. 39. BUILD FOR STRENGTH & FLEXIBILITY <ul><li>Step Two: </li></ul>
    22. 40. Tools <ul><li>How do the needs of your audiences affect your tool choices? </li></ul><ul><li>Are there technical requirements/platform limitations because of existing tech? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the budget constraints and opportunities? </li></ul><ul><li>Are there political or philosophical implications? </li></ul>
    23. 41. Content <ul><li>What data, images, stories, etc. do you need to make this project a success? </li></ul><ul><li>Who will get this content initially? </li></ul><ul><li>How will the content be maintained in the long term? </li></ul>
    24. 42. Data sources: 1. Mange's volunteer spreadsheet 2. Outlook contact files from all staff 2. Outlook contact files from all staff 2. Outlook contact files from all staff
    25. 43. MOVE IN <ul><li>Step Three: </li></ul>
    26. 44. Training & Support
    27. 45. Training Opportunities <ul><li>Tips in Email Updates </li></ul><ul><li>5 minute tips at staff meetings </li></ul><ul><li>Over-the-shoulder sessions </li></ul><ul><li>Internal training classes </li></ul><ul><li>Commercial training (online and off) </li></ul>
    28. 46. ROI
    29. 48. RETURN ON INVESTMENT $ Value of Time Saved - = ROI Cost of Laptop $800 / yr over 3 years - $1800 + contracts and service = ROI <ul><li>(Dollars Saved) - (Dollars Invested) = Return on Investment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Positive numbers good </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Negative numbers bad </li></ul></ul>
    30. 49. THE MATH IS MESSY NOW <ul><li>Intangible benefits: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Job satisfaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Productivity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Morale </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Teamwork </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Client satisfaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Client response time </li></ul></ul>
    31. 51. Implement a system to track volunteer activity and help volunteer managers increase retention by 15% by year-end
    32. 52. <ul><li>Have you done a project like this before? What went right? What went wrong? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you anticipate will go right/wrong in this version? </li></ul><ul><li>Who benefits from this change - what value do they get? </li></ul><ul><li>How are you going to get ahead of the problems? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the training options you can implement? </li></ul><ul><li>How can you engage leadership? </li></ul><ul><li>What communications options can you implement? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the three things you're going to do to start this back at your org? (small - have a meeting, find a new vendor, create a survey) </li></ul>
    33. 53. Getting staff on board Convincing leadership ROI Refining my objective Communicating Change Training & Support Training & Support Training & Support Training & Support Training & Support Training & Support