The ultimate goal of IT is to build trust. Whether a relationship is personal or professional, trust is the cornerstone of it, and IT is no different.
There are two essential factors that drive trust in IT, Reliability and Honoring your Commitments.
As technology continues to evolve and improve so do people’s expectations of IT. In the early days of IT, outages were things that happened. In today’s world, we cannot have an outage. We are so dependent upon IT to run our organization that any down time is detrimental. In fact, people expect IT to function like electricity…when I turn on the switch, it works. We need to create a technology infrastructure and application footprint that can meet this expectation.
Honor your commitments
IT solutions are created by innovation, process and discipline. We have built controls to keep ourselves in balance. It is through these controls that we are able to commit or promise to deliver. It is important that when we commit to a date that we honor our commitment. If we are unable to meet our commitment, then we must reset expectations with our business partner and commit to a new date. Business partners will appreciate the honesty and understand that dates may sometimes be missed. By engaging them in the process, we instill even more trust.
So what happens when something does break? How do you approach the situation?
Often, people will react to a situation instead of trying to understand what needs to be done. Remember, a reaction does not mean that you have resolved the situation. When something happens that damages reliability or prevents us from honoring our commitments, it is essential to think and not simply react. Think about how you would want to be treated if you were the customer. Think about how you would feel and what outcome from this situation would make you happy or satisfied.
In the end, IT is about relationships and relationships are all about trust. Building, keeping and maintaining trust will make your IT team more effective and more satisfied. Thinking about how others want to be treated will only improve your trust based relationships.
Author: EJ Widun, Enterprise Architect for Oakland County, Michigan