“Sadin on Digital” episodes explore the fast-changing and high-stakes world of digital business. Wayne Sadin and I focus in particular on what CEOs and boards must do to lead their companies successfully into the Digital Age. Today, we dive deeper into a topic we’ve touched on a couple times before: “technical debt.” Through some evocative metaphors, Wayne explains why it matters—and how to avoid it building up.
In this episode: Wayne and start with definitions. Should we understand technical “debt” in the financial sense? Or in a more theoretical sense, the result of failing to make the necessary investments to keep up with modern technology? Wayne says it’s the latter. The bottom line: technical debt keeps you from delivering and executing on all the business strategies that leaders want and need.
We then talk through some examples. Wayne recalls a CEO who said, “My Windows XP computer boots up every day—so what’s wrong?” To Wayne, this CEO’s computer was like a P-51 Mustang fighter plane from WWII. Yes, Wayne says, the CEO could stick with his outdated machine—but, like a P-51 going head-to-head against a Chinese MiG, it comes with great risks. Who do you think would win? Hackers, Wayne says, are the new MiGs.
Finally, Wayne puts a plug in for the Digital Directors Network run by Bob Zuckis at USC. Membership is free for board-qualified technology and cybersecurity experts and corporate directors who want to develop their digital diversity skills in the corporate boardroom.
You can also stream the audio-only version of this episode:
'Just because my IT system starts up every day doesn't mean it has the horsepower and the sophistication to defend us.' #CloudWars Click To Tweet 'We in IT have got to go into the business and talk to the business and meet the business, whether that's the line-of-business executives or the investors or the board.' #CloudWars Click To Tweet 'Boards need to have people who can say, Why do I care about technical debt? Why do I care about digital transformation? Why do I care about cybersecurity hygiene? And so on.' #CloudWars Click To Tweet
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Cloud Wars Live Digital All-Stars
Wayne Sadin is one of our regular Digital All-Stars. The All-Stars are experts whose video podcasts will focus on the critical themes shaping (and re-shaping!) the business world here in the digital age of 2019. Our intention is to provide regular chunks of timely ideas and insights about high-priority subjects from industry veterans with diverse backgrounds.