Week 10 – Halfway There

Halfway way there!

I’d celebrate more if I wasn’t keenly aware that I’m late in posting this update. I got behind in posting about three weeks ago and opted to pick my battles. Not going to stress over blog posts, nope, not today. But we’re still running on time, in scope – plus+!

Last week’s entry focused on building for everything. And it took me back. About one hundred years ago I wrote an article for CIO.com on what I called palm leadership. At the time I wrote the piece, it seemed forward-thinking for a technology leadership role at the time. Today I hope it’s the rule, not the exception. I stated:

Making enterprise-and-beyond sized decisions that directly impact everyone and everything with a high probability of disruption based on experience, gut instinct and persistent evaluation of forecasts, both tangible and intangible? Sounds about right.

Spoiler: The article was written only five years ago after a few colleagues asked how I crafted my vision to ensure greatest impact and value. It’s experience. It’s keeping up. It’s not ruling anything out. Mostly, it’s having the confidence to make an educated decision, with a side of forecasting, and act on it. In IT now more than ever are still building for everything. And we are expected to set the tone for continuous improvement and experiential excellence.

Ten-ish weeks ago the department of Information Technology at the University of Tulsa embarked on a 20-week challenge aimed at drivingnot only institutional technology change, but supporting a larger effort of driving an irresistible culture of embracing change and modernization in general. Given much of what’s needed tomorrow (ok, likely ten years ago) relies on a complete overhaul of our foundational technology systems and solutions, we challenged ourselves. End of fiscal year is a big check-in point for accomplishment and remaining time to completion.

We challenged ourselves ten weeks ago. We developed the roadmap. We started with a vengeance. We delivered quick wins while establishing a pace for the longer-delivery pieces. About three weeks in we were hit with an ice bucket of COVID-19 yet we merely stumbled and kept moving forward. Thankfully in the early vetting process we took into account everything as it’s been, everything as it’s needed to be and reimagined how to get there. And by everything, I mean all areas of the university.How could we get the most intentional bang for our buck? Then, about eight weeks in, we took on more. No scope creep here; our 20-week transformation plan remains the same. However, we diversified some efforts and talent and are carrying more. Why? Because we can. We’ve discovered in this new-found remote environment we have the capacity for more of different. Not one to turn down a challenge-upon-a-challenge, let’s do this.

Because we can. We’ve discovered in this new-found remote environment we have the capacity for more of different.

Halfway point. We’re ready for the shift from execution to a focus on completion.

Our status:

Until next time…stay safe!