by Gary Beach

Doing Less With Less

Oct 12, 2009

How to maximize value with lowers costs.

Remember the 1976 movie Network, in which actor Howard Beale goes on an on-air rampage encouraging viewers to lean out their windows and scream, “I am mad as hell and I am not going to take it anymore!”? Beale’s rant came to mind during a recent series of dinners I attended for CIOs around the country, hosted by enterprise software vendor CA.

The focus of the dinners was a concept called “enterprise lean systems”—a phrase that was new to me. Analysts best sum up lean IT in these four words: maximize value, lower costs.

As I gave my opening remarks at each dinner, I promised my guests that we were collectively going to drive a nail into the do-more-with-less coffin. And at dinner after dinner, from Denver to Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., guests vociferously agreed with what one CIO referred to as the “moronic” marketing phrase of doing more with less.

One key lesson CIOs are learning during this recession is that the three most important words in the lexicon of successful CIOs are: “business, business, business.” Smart CIOs know that budgets for 2010 will not spring back to levels seen prior to 2007 for several more years. They also know that the business continues to demand more solutions every day.

At one dinner, a CIO said his mantra for 2010 was “do less with less.” I asked him what he meant by that. He said CIOs needed to do a much better job at prioritizing projects and doing fewer of them with less money in the budget for next year. Makes sense.

Are you mad as hell and not going to take the do-more-with-less marching orders any longer? Visit your favorite search engine and discover all you can about enterprise lean systems and lean IT. The demand for tech solutions will continue to soar next year. Your budgets will not. But I guarantee you that you can find lots of fat that can be trimmed to fund the projects that count.

Enterprise lean systems can help you do that.

Good luck in doing less with less.