Friday, April 24, 2015

Career Building Wisdom From a Top Chief Information Security Officer

A Different Drumbeat

A heart-to-heart conversation with a very successful CISO who now marches to a different drumbeat than the one he used to follow earlier in his career produced wisdom and advice that I believe other security leaders and up-and-coming security leaders should learn from.

The seasoned CISO suggested that Information Security is now a Business Risk Management Issue and not an issue of which security tool to buy next.  He suggested that to approach information security any other way is a recipe for disaster. 
"I used to think doing business was only about delivering services, winning and moving the performance bar forward and upward.  
I've learned that while those objectives are important, they're not as important as I once thought.  Achievement can't be reached at the price of someone else's dignity, embarrassment a co-worker or doing damage to relationships."

This CISO went on to tell me that for many people who are on their way up in the Cyber Security profession, if they'd just get help to move their personal approach 15 degrees to the left or to the right, they'd come across less like a blunt instrument causing significant pain to others and more like the soft touch person an effective security professional needs to become.

Time To Remove The Blinders
"Up until I experienced EQi 2.0 I would say that I was going through life not with blinders on but something similar to when my windshield wipers are unable to keep up with the rain collecting on my windshield.
Don’t get me wrong; I have been successful and able to see clearly at times out the “windshield of life” even if life is pouring down on me. However, sometimes I would ponder how is it that certain people are able to connect with so many people.
The answer is emotional intelligence. My experience taking the assessment and the coaching afterwards was amazing. Finally it all clicked for me. Emotional Intelligence is about understanding your own emotions, utilizing them to their fullest and understanding the emotions of others.
Within those few moments I began to understand that being aware of my emotional strengths and potential limiters (I don't have weaknesses) would allow me to see far more clearly out my windshield of life so that I can interact more efficiently and effectively with anyone. I am so thankful that I was introduced to EQi 2.0. I only wish it was years earlier." 
Yes, that was a powerful testimonial and it came to me from someone who at the time of our first meeting was broken and stuck.  He's not perfect now but he's a different person today than who he was when we met a while back.  The work we did wasn't easy but it was worth it.  

One last testimonial from this CISO
"Jeff, you have created a person who is no longer like most of his peers and I thank you for that."
No, I don't create people in any way shape or form.  What I am trained, certified and highly effective at helping people with is creating change.  When this CISO came to me, he was in need of many changes.  They were behavioral changes that had gotten him stuck.  

Some of my coaching training came form The Marshall Goldsmith Group.  Dr. Goldsmith wrote a very popular book called "What Got You Here Won't Get You There".  This particular CISO came to a point of realization that what got him to the position he was in a couple of years ago wasn't going to keep moving him forward.

We set out on a journey to identify this person's current state of Emotional Intelligence a couple of years back.  We built an agreed upon coaching plan that was executed over the period of 6 months. At the end of 6 months of coaching, the CISO took the same assessment again.

We were able to quantify and measure improvement in every Emotional Intelligence skill we'd set out to improve 6 months before.  

Your IQ is what likely got you to where you are now.  It is your EQ or Emotional Quotient that will get you to the next level of career and personal success.

Jeff Snyder's, Certified Emotional Intelligence Coach, Certified Leadership Coach, Security Recruiter Blog, 719.686.8810's Security Recruiter Blog