Three lessons you can Learn From Seahawks that are good for Operations

Forbes has a guest post from SunGardAs’s Matthew Goche.  Matthew’s focus is security, but I think his points can apply to Operations in general.

What The Seattle Seahawks Can Teach You About Your IT Security Program

I typically enjoy the Super Bowl. We get together with family and friends to watch the game, laugh at the commercials, enjoy the halftime show, and place predictions on winners. What I love best is an exciting, competitive game. Unfortunately, this past Super Bowl did not live up to my hopes, mainly due to the Seattle Seahawks completely outclassing and crushing the Denver Broncos.

As I watched the game, it occurred to me that many companies’ IT securityprograms resemble the Broncos team, instead of performing like the Seahawks. This is not going to work in business (just as it didn’t in the Super Bowl) for three key reasons:














The three steps are 

1. Make fewer mistakes

Broncos: four turnovers. Seahawks: zero. For IT to prevent “turnovers,” change must be managed. Backups maintained. Security reviews conducted.

2. Have no heroes

Unfortunately, far too many organizations forget this fact. They choose to rely on IT MVPs and heroes: i.e., the one developer who knows what to do when a vulnerability is discovered, or the one network administrator who knows what to block when there is a potential breach.

3. Resilient from Top to Bottom

Before these playoffs, few casual fans could have named many of the Seahawks defenders. But everyone watching the Super Bowl found out that the Seahawks defense has almost no weaknesses. The defensive line is built on under-appreciated but high-quality players who are focused on team results, not personal glory.

The post closes with do you want to play like the Broncos or play like the Seahawks?

How do you want your IT security program to perform – like the Denver Broncos or the Seattle Seahawks? If you are the GM or coach at your company, you should focus on building a roster of IT security controls and security-focused IT providers that resemble the Seattle Seahawks.  By being prepared and validating all aspects of your program, you, too, can crush vulnerabilities and thrive in a complex threat environment.

Security is a bit easier when you have a team who works together.  Go Hawks.  Note my family, friends, one of who is a sheriff.