Entering content area for MSTM Blog

blog posts

  • Applying Innovation: Andrew Stein

    associated image

    “What will you be doing in your role as a Technology Manager?” It was a seminar started with a critical question by Andrew Stein, Chief Strategy and Sales & Marketing Executive from Pervasive Strategy. Referring back to the question, managing teams, encouraging communication and delivering technology projects are the basic jobs of technology managers. Their major responsibility is to defend the company from disruption of technology. It is not about delivering projects, but setting a new goal for a company to sustain in the future.

    One would expect that a lecture regarding management would be filled with an intimidating atmosphere however, as a seasoned speaker Andrew Stein proved that he could connect to the audience not only through his passion and gestures, but also with the content of his slides. Mr. Stein put a funny picture on his slide of Superman! He described that technology managers have to behave like a Superman. They are required to work under pressure in a quick pace environment when all kind of possibilities may disrupt company’s competitive advantages at anytime. They lead the company to demand for new growth from unknown markets and create economic driver for the current situation. They are fueled by creativity more than efficiency. They have to know that innovation drives the transformation. It is a continuous lifecycle that technology managers should always be reminded their strategy should focus on finding a new land instead of competition.


    Next, Mr. Stein talked about the credibility built on metrics. In a company, when technology managers are convincing the employees and managers to change, credibility is an important measure. It leads to the success or failure of the company’s transformation. Mr. Stein suggested a framework in the class with some key elements that technology managers should not ignore. Another factor that we should consider is that students are educated in what needs to be measured when building the framework.

    Last but not least, Mr. Stein stressed that competition drives innovation. Technology managers have to properly understand your competitors, the people, the product and the leadership. Understanding company’s strengths will tell the baseline that the company must achieve. Understanding a company’s weaknesses enables the company to position its strengths. They have to know that fierce competition would shrink the market growth and profits. Healthy competition usually drives industry innovation resulting in better solutions and experiences to the customers.

    Mr. Stein’s speech ended with these words, “Technology Management is a journey, aligned with corporate goals. Be agile and ready to pivot, measure the right thing, demonstrate value and communicate often.” The MSTM family was privileged to have this experienced and friendly speaker share his ideas, passion and inspire us.

∞ Back to top © 2011 University of Illinois, College of Business