All technology personnel should strive to develop their skills and presence in three distinct areas:
- Technological Expertise
- Business Savvy
- Leadership and Communication Skills
Technological Expertise is an obvious requirement for technical personnel. Technology is a tool for solving organizational and business problems, and the better you are with technology the more problems you can solve.
Business Savvy is often overlooked. Google, as an example, enjoys breathtaking technological depth, but they seem to have almost no understanding of their target markets. Google technologies are often brilliant, but clunky to use and disjointed. Google technologies are rarely smoothe to operate. My understanding is that they are taking steps to correct this, and I wish them well because they really have a lot to offer.
Leadership and Communication Skills are last but certainly not least. Brilliant minds need to influence, communicate, listen, persuade, and align if they are to have a meaningful impact. All too often technology professionals are accurately described as aloof, isolated, irrelevant, uncooperative, confusing and ineffective. Always remember that even technology is ultimately not about hardware and software, but "peopleware."
These skills used in concert are the hallmark of a world-class technology team.