Thursday, February 6, 2014

How to Succeed in Technology Failure without Really Leading #14ntc

All of us look back and can quickly think of times when a technology project went astray. Whether it was a minor misstep or a major fallout. So it isn't a matter of if you have failed, it is a matter of when you have failed.

This is the topic of our pre-conference session this year at the Nonprofit Technology Conference by NTEN.
Technology implementation is becoming more critical to nonprofit mission success every year. It's not just the nuts and bolts that keep your staff online, its the expansion of technology into mission, program, communications, development, and ultimately organizing that nonprofits seek to achieve. Using this broadened definition of 'technology,' we know that the failure rates of these implementations are extremely high - but why? These sessions will explore at both the strategic and tactical levels the constraints under which nonprofits must implement technology, the role strong internal leadership and understanding plays in their success, and ultimately, how to both succeed and to learn from inevitable failure to position your organization to fail in small, non-disruptive ways, learn from mistakes, and iterate for long term tech - and tech leadership - success. 

But this is more than a panel talking about why it is OK to fail. This will not be a discussion of theory, this will not be a presentation. You will come out with a set of tools to help ensure project success, but also be able to react and correct the course if things start to go wrong.

We plan to use some hilarious skits to illustrate points, dissect real examples for application, integrate methods you can use in your job and provide expert insight in topics like:

  • Setting expectations-defining the project goals
  • Managing the people
  • Communications
  • Process to manage decision making

Even as we have planned this session, I have learned a few new things. I am eager to attend and hear my co-panelists present. The team is an amazing one! Rose de Fremery, Dahna Goldstein, Tracy Kronzak, Robert Weiner and myself. It would be hard to build a more balanced team, ranging in expertise in technology strategy, change management, building staff skills, project management, business process and so much more.

I have presented many times at the NTC, but I can honestly say I have never seen a more prepared, well constructed agenda and great team.

It may seem like this is an attempt to just promote a session I am presenting in, but I really have a minor part. I just felt driven to share this session because I see the value and I know you will too.  I hope you will join us!

Read more about the session! And register for the NTC and our pre-conference session (a separate, free registration is required and has LIMITED SPACE).

Sessions like this and awesome people like my co-presenters gets me excited about the NTC! If you aren't registered yet, you should do it now!

Register for NTC before Feb 15 to save!


Brylie Oxley said...

I am looking forward to your session! What are some of the tools/strategies you will be covering?

(Note: you misspelled "myself" as "myslef" in the paragraph where you describe the panelists. :-)

Steve Heye said...

Ah yes, I actually meant to introduce mysmelf. (silly monty python reference, sorry)

The tools and strategies will include a decision making model (RACI), tech requirement gathering, communication management, project success\failure factors and some creative ways to handle change management.

Norman Reiss said...

I've already registered - looking forward to session (I know most of the panelists!)

Steve Heye said...

It will be great to see you Norman! The panelists are a pretty well known group, but we have never presented together like this! It is gonna be fun.