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Are you ready to grow?

Oct 14, 20133 mins
IT JobsIT LeadershipIT Strategy

If the economy rebounds as predicted in 2014, are you prepared to lead the growth of your security practice to successfully support the growth of the business?

According to a recent article on CNN Money, the growing consensus is that 2014 is the year the economy is going to turn around. Uncertainties are likely to be settled, revenues increase, and hiring regains momentum.

For many in security, this is welcome news. Over the last few years, team have scraped by with existing staff, technology and investments. If the economy truly rebounds, it could mean growth for security practices.

When the situation changes, are you ready to grow?

Operating our security programs effectively — especially in a period of growth — requires some changes. Shifts in thinking that lead to changes in behavior. A focus on aligning with and serving the needs of the business.

A large part of our growth is pegged to the growth of the business. As the business plans and prepares for coming changes, are you involved enough to understand what it means for the security team?

Maybe it means shifting the focus to offense instead of defense. Or perhaps it’s a chance to get “back to the basics,” and start to solve challenges in a way that allows someone else to take it over. Sharing what we know to distribute the workload, improves security while fueling growth and the opportunity to focus on new and more complex challenges. 

The guiding question is “how will these actions increase value to, and the value of the organization?”

Making time to consider and answer the question is a challenge in a hectic environment focused on reaction and response.

Preparing for growth means means taking a tactical pause now to consider whether growth for the group is a function of headcount, technology, or training to increase capability.

Here are some additional suggestions to consider in the process of evaluating and preparing:

  • Focus on outcomes: spend time meeting with and learning from the business we support to define and understand where they are headed; then apply the security lens to the situation to make sure they get there.
  • Consider the fundamentals: the challenge of the “basics” is there are a lot to choose from. Absent a distilled list of industry considerations, build on your experience, and the experience of the team to consider what core elements of the program need to be strengthened to support future growth — not just of the team, but of the entire organization
  • Take time to prioritize the findings, and work with the business to justify the key actions for growth

Failing to take the time now to assess, consider, and prepare for the future could mean a missed opportunity.

Share some of your desired changes for your team in the comments. Let us know why it’s a priority, and how it is poised to benefit the company. Working collectively, we gain insights that help each of us prepare a bit better.


Michael Santarcangelo develops exceptional leaders and powerful communicators with the security mindset for success. The founder of Security Catalyst, he draws on nearly two decades of experience of success advancing security in variety of operational roles. He guides leaders and teams on the best next step of their journey.

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