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The IT Articles from Harvard Business Review That You Need to Read

To say that technology evolves rapidly is an understatement. Being able to find the right solution for your business challenges is crucial to achieve the outcome that you're after. On top of updating company and business processes, it is important to find a means to improve yourself and your staff through additional reading materials as well. To strive for positive change, it is important to make an effort to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and embrace technology from all angles. 

Knowledge is power. Being a thought leader (and a business leader in general) involves taking a consistent and proactive approach that involves learning something new every day. This means finding time and making an effort to stay on top of the latest IT trends and other cutting edge technology. Not doing so increases the risk of using outdated strategies and getting left behind.

Every successful thought leader needs to have a certain hunger for knowledge and a drive to learn and improve. With this in mind, here are five key articles from the Harvard Business Review that should be on your reading list.

1. The Rise of the Chief Marketing Technologist

Ten years ago, you wouldn't necessarily consider marketing as the most technology-driven aspect of your business enterprise. But thanks to data analytics, social media tools and more, this is exactly what it has become. A few years ago, Gartner predicted that by the end of this year, a company's CMO will be spending more on tech and IT than even the CIO; and from the look of things, there is a very high likelihood of it really happening . 

This article, written by Scott Brinker and Laura McLellan, examines how technology has helped transform marketing into more than just getting "the right message in front of the right person at the right time". It takes a look into how marketing has evolved into a 21st century customer service operation and so much more.

2. How to Spot a Machine Learning Opportunity, Even If You Aren't a Data Scientist 

Machine learning is the concept that not only can computers be programmed to complete certain tasks without human interaction, they can actually get better at it as time goes by. This simple premise has potentially massive implications in nearly every area of business that you can think of. Even a shortage of data scientists will no longer be a setback. 

This piece, written by Kathryn Hume, teaches you how to identify signs in your everyday work that indicate you might be looking at a potential machine-learning opportunity by mimicking how data scientists approach supervised learning in general.

3. What's the Value of a Like?

We have officially entered an era where even small- and medium-sized businesses are spending massive amounts of money each year to establish their brand's presence on social media. But as this is still a relatively new approach to customer outreach, it leads to a series of important questions —How does social media truly drive outcome? How do you monetise retweets? What business value does a ‘like’ on Facebook bring to the table? How can you be sure that it investing allyour money on getting 10,000 likes is worth it if you don't understand what a ‘like’ means to your bottom line in the first place?

This piece, written by Leslie K. John and others, seeks to answer all these questions by way of real world examples from today's top brands. 

4. To Guard Against Cybercrime, Follow the Money

Cybersecurity is one of the most pressing issues facing businesses in the modern era, particularly because the average cost of a data breach rose to $3.62 million per incident in 2017. But because these attacks are so prevalent — and so devastating — taking a reactive approach to cyber crime just isn't going to cut it anymore. 

This article, written by Matthew Gardiner, aims to teach organisational leaders how to take a much more proactive approach to guarding against cyber crime by providing more information about how these cyberattacks work, where they're coming from, and how the people who execute them think. 

5. Why IT Fumbles Analytics

Big data and business analytics are impossibly valuable tools when used properly due to the sheer quality of insight they can generate alone. However, many organisational leaders still fail to grasp simple but essential concepts, like the fact that any insight you're able to uncover is only as good as the quality of the data you’re working with in the first place. 

This piece, written by Donald A. Marchand and Joe Peppard, outlines the most common reasons why IT departments around the world are still fumbling when it comes to analytics. It then highlights a few key ways to ensure these issues can be avoided altogether. 

Powernet: Your True Technology Partner

As an industry-leading, managed IT service provider, we at Powernet understand that technology is ultimately just a platform - how you choose to use that platform will determine the type of competitive advantage you're able to create for yourself in the marketplace. Leveraging technology to create your ideal business outcome doesn't necessarily require having the latest or greatest piece of equipment.  It requires the knowledge to act with confidence, knowing that you've selected the right IT solution to complete critical tasks at the right time. Taking the time to get valuable insights from resources like the Harvard Business Review is the perfect way to help accomplish just that.

If you have any additional questions about these articles or other IT-related topics and if you feel the need to find the best IT solution for you and your business, don't delay — contact Powernet today. 

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