Engagement and IT: You Can No Longer Have One Without the Other

Posted on April 5, 2012. Filed under: CIO, Job Market Trends | Tags: , , , , |

by Sheree Van Vreede (@rezlady)

cloud computingToday’s buzzword of the moment is “engagement.” If you’ve spent more than five minutes “engaging” in social media these days, you can’t miss it. If we’re not talking about “communities,” we’re talking about “engagement.”

What Does Engagement Mean for IT?

Gone are the days of the IT department huddled together in some back corner of the office building, lost in its own world of Geek-speak…an enigma to the rest of the company. As the lonely child of a programmer, I can remember those times when my father would take me along to work with him, where he was very involved wth VAX machines. The discussions were seemingly intense and high level, and no one outside of the department looked too comfortable venturing in.

Today, this same man, the CTO of a small accounting firm, is now lost in discussions of cloud computing and virtualization, but this time, it’s less with colleagues and more with “non-techies,” finding ways to convince them that IT is more than just the computer on their desk and the network they log into each morning, that it is truly the backbone for how they do business and that it effects the firm’s bottom line.

The other day I came across an article written in Forbes called 8 Careers Built in Relationships. I noticed that IT seemed to be distinctly missing from this list, and it made me wonder whether the tide is really changing for this sector. Are relationships (and not just with other techies) becoming more essential to building a successful career in IT? Is engagement truly the wave of the future? Or is there still room for the mastermind Geeks in the back corner, spending all day with their heads in the clouds?

What say you? We’d love to hear from you.

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3 Responses to “Engagement and IT: You Can No Longer Have One Without the Other”

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[…] Last month, we posted a blog focused on the IT group and how they struggle effectively engaging the rest of the business. You can read that post here. […]

[…] at work; with social media becoming more and more a part of our personal lives, the idea of “engagement” is now a hot topic when it comes to pursuing our careers and how we position ourselves to […]

[…] IT: 10 Reasons IT Gets a Bad Reputation A May 5th article in TechRepublic.com (10 Reasons IT Pros Get a Bad Rap) provides a list of reasons why there is such a negative perception of the IT department in general and IT workers specifically. Three of the ten reasons listed I don’t agree with whole-heartedly. #1 :”We’re considered too well-paid;” #8: “We suffer from the Golden Boy syndrome;” and #9: “We are indispensable” are not really true anymore…although they were about a decade ago. With all of the IT outsourcing happening, IT is no longer the hot and happening place it used to be. It’s more of a commodity field now, and nearly any IT job is “dispensable”…meaning it can be outsourced. The rest of the items on the list can be solved and remedied with the right touch. All it takes is a dedication and focus in one particular area to turn the tide. That area is “Engagement.” Of course, to make the transition complete, the IT group has to effectively execute on the promises it makes. But it all starts with engagement. Last month, we posted a blog focused on the IT group and how they struggle effectively engaging the rest of the business. You can read that post here. […]

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