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tradeshowDo You Know What CIOs Are Struggling With Right Now?

IT Doesn’t…

What would it be worth if you knew something really important, that your IT clients don’t know?

It might lead to that coveted Trusted Advisor status – if you presented it right.

I opened Thursday’s session at SecureWorld Charlotte with  “The One Big Mistake Companies Are Making w/ SECURITY”. My session was packed! Standing room only. and a wall full of stand-ups…

I guess people heard me telling funny stories and decided to wonder in from the hall. After all, even technology sessions should be fun to listen to.

But here’s the surprising fact.  After assessing who was in my audience (mostly F500 company IT people), I asked for input on the CIOs role in 2016. No one had the right answers!  No One!  I did get generic answers like, Security.  And yes, Gartner and The Wall Street Journal are reporting this.  But it’s old news, and only one person in the room raised their hand when I asked who is reading the CIO Journal Section.$1 HC Book Ad

No wonder IT has a hard time convincing their leadership to do the right thing. Even when selling internally, good marketing starts “where people are” and takes them “where they need to go.”

Given the walls that exist between IT and executive management, event a great marketer will rarely be heard.

One thing everyone did agree on – their end users are heading toward More IoT, More Cloud, and More BYOD…even those companies that claim to not be doing BYOD, are.  People are going to use their phones for email regardless of what the company does. Even if they have to use their gmail account – Ref. Ms. Clinton.

So what are CIOs doing in 2016:

  • More interaction with the Board.
  • More involvement in company strategy – because it all hinges on using technology.
  • Finding ways to leverage IoT, Cloud, Big Data, and Social Business – to achieve better customer experience / competitive advantage (Think Amazon vs. Walmart). And remember Walmart is big on technology – but their customer experience is miserable.
  • More focus on security…  (Have your read recent reports on Target’s failure to expand into Canada – blamed on IT mishaps!)

But Also Take Note – IT Budgets and Security are a Challenge:

  • IT spending is down 5.88% as of Q4, 2015!
  • IoT spending is up and growing!
  • Compliance will continue to grow and demand more budget – but won’t make things more secure (in most cases).
  • Security talent is growing scarce. Only the very large companies will have real security talent…the rest will work for consulting companies. (Meaning the mid and small market needs it from a third-party source.)

Lots to think about in 2016!  If you have security answers – this could be a great year for you and your company.

© 2016, David Stelzl





What’s The One Big Mistake Just About Every Business Is Making When It Comes To Security?

There are lots of mistakes being made…I guess you could argue one over the other. But the big mistake I constantly see is a lack of insight into what’s going on.

No Detection. No Intelligence.

As Mike McConnell put is months ago in the Wall Street Journal, IT lacks the data and the trade-craft to bring intelligence to their company.

This morning, 8:30 AM, I am on stage in Charlotte, NC. speaking to business leaders and IT personnel on this topic. Usually I am doing this talk at Lunch & Learns, sponsored by resellers and security product manufacturers. But this morning I decided to accept an invitation to speak at SecureWorld.

My hope is that my talk will generate opportunity for the many resellers and technology vendors I work with. It’s the education session in my conversion chart, but this time there’s no real conversion. The sponsoring technology companies will be lined up in the Technology Expo Hall. If you’ve read my book, you know that conversion goes way down once they leave this room.

If you really want to drive technology sales, you need a presentation like this in you home town, with a sign up sheet calling your audience to an assessment. Without, it’s just education.

Even so, I am looking forward to meeting with this group simply to learn more about what they are thinking, doing, and needing. The more you know about the CIO and IT culture the better equipped you’ll be in your next meeting.  Hope to see you there – learning about CIOs and IT. But don’t expect a big conversion.

Copyright, 2016, David Stelzl


secureworldSecureWorld – Charlotte is Next Week

What’s Your Conversion Strategy?

Whether its a sales call coming up, trade show, lunch & learn, or channel summit you’re attending – do you have a conversion strategy? Most people, when they book a trade show, or set up a lunch & learn mark it on the calendar and wait for it to happen. This is poor planning. Speakers do the same thing. Book a gig, write it on the calendar, and then go about their other business. $1 HC Book Ad

Conversion Strategy should be top of mind.  Whatever your next social interaction is, get a conversion plan in place. Yesterday, on a coaching call, I asked a sales rep about his upcoming lunch & learn…”If I were a CIO attending, what would our next step be? What’s the conversion strategy?” His answer was the norm – not sure.  This is typical because we don’t naturally think about conversion.  Perhaps is sounds too salesy. But it’s important.

Two weeks ago I was attending Check Point’s Sales Kick Off.  As soon as I locked in the trip, I was meeting with my team to put a conversion in place. With limited time, and knowing how busy everyone would be at the show, we created a very simple plan.

New Business Cards!

That’s right, we decided to create extra large business cards (About 3 by 5) with my contact info and a $1 book offer for The House & The Cloud. Knowing everyone would be handing out standard business cards, I wanted something that would stand out with a direct marketing offer on it.

Did it work?  It did….I got people’s attention. People laughed when I pulled out my giant business card, but I also connected with people that might otherwise have tossed my card in a pile of trade show materials after the event.

Next week I will be speaking at the Charlotte SecureWorld Conference…I have just one week to put my strategy in place…showing up without one would be a huge mistake.

Copyright 2016, David Stelzl

PS, If you missed getting my card at the Check Point Event, try clicking on the HOUSE & CLOUD ad above…


missleCyberweapons Are Here – Offensive Strikes From The US?

Does anyone remember S3? A small company out of Florida, about 15 years ago, called on me while I was running security for Dimension Data, North America. Their product offered a way to counterattack anyone who came at them with a cyberattack…The product never took off, simply because our laws don’t allow companies to launch counterattacks.  Yesterday’s WSJ offers some new perspective on where the US Government is  headed with this.

“The U.S. military has spent five years developing advanced cyberweapon and digital capabilities and is likely to deploy them more publicly soon, the head of the Pentagon’s U.S. Cyber Command said Thursday.” – WSJcompliancy group

Some important sound bites on this subject…WSJ

  • “Adm. Rogers (the current NSA Director ) suggested many Americans have become complacent, since they don’t see the rise of cyber armies and cybercriminals affecting their daily lives.” – An understatement from the WSJ!
  • The wakeup call is coming… “Analysts have said these sorts of acts could include attacking a country’s electrical grid or knocking a nation’s financial system offline.”
  • Rogers… “I would argue it’s going to get worse before it gets better.”- Really, do you really see this getting better any time soon?

Read the article if you have access….

Some of the attacks we’ve seen over the past year – OPM, Sony, and others,… they seem to be coming from China, Korea, and other Nation States looking to sift us of our Intellectual capital or create disruptions, as in the case of Sony, we are in fact at war.

© 2016, David Stelzl

PS. Join me on Feb 12th at SecureWorld…I’ll be speaking at 8:30AM – Charlotte NC.