What every CEO needs to understand to build products leveraging the cloud

4 most important truths that impact culture, policy, risk, and success

There are several key strategic activities and habits that businesses that want to succeed in deploying technology on the Cloud, like you, must adopt. I base this from my reference point of having worked to scale up, build out, help secure, attest, certify, review, architect amazing platforms that include Cisco, Google, EMC, and tens of millions of virtual instances serving over a billion people a year. Frankly the mental model shared below, as 4 concise truths, is only possible with the C-suite leading the revolution at the top. Small teams can accomplish these transformations, but the organization as a whole cannot win in the market based on a small project.

Culture and the new rules of products leveraging the cloud

There is a lot of information, communication on Cloud, the benefits and they could scale to businesses. But I wanna provide four key practical things for you to consider as the strategic leader, business operator, and/or PNL owner for your business and your products that are going to take advantage of this amazing technology.

The most important thing that you need to remember is that the Cloud is abstracting the services that classic hardware was providing you. What that means is the foundation that technology was built upon for your current products, if you’re moving current into the Cloud, or new, THIS foundation is different, which means you have different rules that you get to follow.

Failure to reset the organization from the top down will create innovation debt that has proven so many times the achilles heel to long standing successful organizations that were usurped by newcomers.

4 Foundations to winning digitally

New Truths / Rules

#1. Accept that the rules are different and embrace, take advantage of those different rules. What does that mean? First off, it means that you have less responsibility of turning the dials of certain elements of your technology. Right? You don’t need to worry about power supplies and physical access.

You gain confidence in your providers through appropriate third party attestations that cover and demonstrate the tests that you want. Security, compliance, attestation, cost, deployment, all these factors change because of abstracted services.

Iterate and test at scale

#2 You must adopt a more reflective product update cycle that takes advantage of the Cloud. Precisely that you should embrace the concept of dev ops, agile development, versus waterfall. How this impacts your business? If you’re an IT operations familiar leader, you will wish to see patching go away at the machine level, and instead demanding your teams to do automated redeployment in a Cloud every 10 minutes, 20 minutes, to match the speed of Google and Facebook. Or perhaps every day as needed.

Don’t have naiveté — build a culture to test, at scale, and allow the market to prove the viability of every feature and benefit

This allows you to remove the technical operational debt and overhead that is classic in organizations that go from data centers that they own to migrating in the Cloud. If you can adopt and take advantage of the ability to refresh, build in an agile format, allow for automation, you will truly benefit from the Cloud platform.

Culture and better definitions of success

#3 Create a culture that takes advantage of the Cloud capabilities and unique functions. This means that when you look at your policies, you look at your procedures, you look at your market and capital incentives, be sure that you structure them in a human behavior perspective, such that as they are written, they guide and direct your teams to build and deploy technology that capitalizes and benefits, not only your bottom line from a cashflow perspective, but from a technical debt management, and even more important, the delight and satisfaction of your customers.

Go FAST

#4 Speed is paramount, native, and the default on these platforms. There are new innovations coming out regularly from amazing Cloud providers from around the world. You need to create the pathways, the trusted connections, and the guidance that enables and allows your product innovators, the builders of your product that give you the distinct market advantage today and create the new innovations for tomorrow. You need to put them in a place where they can move quickly into the technologies.

Yes … of course

Yes, we wanna make sure that we manage cost, that we contemplate, consider, and construct security and privacy apparatuses to make sure that we can sustain from a corporate entity operational capability. Yes, we need to be able to scale to millions, and tens of millions of clients in real time with, ideally, tens, hundreds, millions of dollars of revenue. But speed matters.

Find ways to accelerate, innovate, leveraging DevOps, agile, nurturing your culture through policy process and the people, and take advantage of the abstracted technology. Doing so will result will help your business to multiply in customer delight experiences, globally.