Organization Structure

Organization Structure
What's a greater concern for returning to the office? Comment how you are prioritizing...

Top Answer : The majority of our focus is definitely on the human factors as the technical factors are mostly related to things we had to solve as we went distributed.  We will need some additional technical stuff to support the human factors (eg. scheduling software to limit the # of people in the office at the same time) but solving the human factors of helping people to feel comfortable, ensuring that safety precautions are being followed, etc... are much harder and why it will be a while before we go back.

Teams are becoming increasingly more global. Do you have any advice on how to manage the day-to-day of a increasingly global team?

Top Answer : Go back to the basics. Be very clear what their job descriptions are, how they contribute to the team larger team, and how they affect your larger strategy. That helps set up cohesive and well-oiled teams across the globe.

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At what point does it make sense for the security lead to be directly reporting to the CEO and not a CIO/CTO?

Top Answer : I'm always shocked at how much pent up energy there is around that particular topic. There are people that feel so strongly that a CSO should never work for the CIO. That CIOs don't understand security and they never give money to security. It gets to be quite an intense conversation. In the last few companies I've worked for, there wasn't a whole lot of debate about how things should roll up. It's like, hey you got this? Make this happen! But I think the best approach is to always be looking at what is right for the company at that given time. Security is important to me. But I understand it only works if IT ops and security ops are willing to work together. Its all about people. A lot of times, everyone wants to spend a lot of time defining roles and responsibilities. Roles and responsibilities are important to understand but it all comes down to people and people behaving in the right way and understanding that there's actually value in us all working together to solve this problem.

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How do you balance workload and team size?

Top Answer : One word: DENIAL

Over 30 years in IT and the teams have never been large enough to handle workload. That’s where the team leader, in concert with the customer (consumer of the services) comes in – it’s their job to rank, prioritize, and re-prioritize as needed the workload.

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How should startups respond/pivot to the pandemic?

Top Answer : There's probably some startup opportunities in the area of education. We have great universities in the greater San Francisco Bay area, Boston and elsewhere, and these do effectively manifest as sorting hats. But what they really have is great teachers and networks. There is an opportunity to extend, not just these online classes, but be able to extend that community in a meaningful way into the middle of America, and build on top of this shift. Like all education startups, it's a long road. It would take a brave investor with commitment to the founders, but I do think that this is a trend that will happen.  I also think that the way we approach IT may change. If we look at what it means to onboard an employee who's never going to physically be in the office, there's lots of supply chain relationship management problems that actually exist. The HR startups, that are frankly just web form versions of the paper processes that companies were doing, those companies that are domain experts in doing these things online, they are still burdened with heavy paper processes. I think that there are startup opportunities in the area of how do you automate these core business processes. Another area that is particularly interesting is the way we use work laptops at Google. Let's say my work laptop were to die, I would drive to the closest Google office, I would walk in. And then there's just a stack of laptops there where I come in and I badge and I walk away with a laptop and they assume the one that was unplugged when I badged was the one I took. Then I log in, they cross reference it to that, and now that laptop is associated with me and my downtime is an hour round trip. I think that there will be somebody who's successful in this area to augment the IT desktop lifecycle. If you look at fully loaded costs of an employee, there's a lot of value to be extracted, if you can compress that into a more complete solution.

How large is your department?

Top Answer :

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Does reporting line matter to your effectiveness?

Top Answer : I don’t think so.   I currently lead the business operations and partnering with software transformation at Juniper.  At Mist, I had a very broad role managing business operations.  I also had sales ops, logistics, supply chain, owning NPI, CPQ.  I ended up being dotted line to sales, to product, even if I was really reporting to the CFO. l’ve always been manager/boss agnostic.  It's not been something I really have ended thinking about. For me, it's more about, okay, what can I do to  have an impact and move the needle?

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