Be Like Curious George; Always Ask Why

Inspiring Success - A blog from Creating IT Futures

Be Like Curious George; Always Ask Why

Oct 17, 2017

LinkedIn Shot.zip - CopyKeith Strong claims he was like the children’s storybook monkey Curious George while growing up. “I always wanted to get into everything and I was always asking the question, ‘Why?’,” he said.

Strong started his tech career in telecom, doing sales for MCI, later moving onto jobs with Siemens and Nextel, until he created his own cloud and managed services company, Network Insiders, in 2013 in Houston.

“I’ve learned in my job that acronyms scare people off. I translate them so it doesn’t sound like rocket science,” said Strong. “Hurricane Harvey in Houston acted as a reminder that the work we do is needed. We help companies stay connected.”

Strong lives in an area that wasn’t flooded by Harvey, but he helped friends and family that were affected by the storm. Now Strong is looking to see how he can help others succeed in their tech careers. He wants to mentor others.

“I look for a desire in new recruits to be a part of something,” says Strong. He advises them, “You are already engaged in tech. Believe you can do it. Get guidance and learn what it really is.”

Minorities especially need to see people like themselves working within the industry. If they’re not already working in the industry, Strong suggests that they gain more experience by working tech at their local church or offer basic computer training at the local library. Get involved in the industry and get a certification. Everyone needs tech support, so there are a lot of options to apply tech knowledge. “You’re only limited by your imagination,” adds Strong.

Strong gives three key steps for any newbie in the tech industry:

  1. Have a willingness to continue to learn and remain relevant.
  2. Communicate tech’s value. IT is seen as a utility, and we need to change that perception and measure our success based on business metrics and how technology influences revenue.
  3. Change your language. Become more customer service oriented. At the end, the customer experience is paramount.

“I’m drinking the Kool-Aid and am ready to pour it on others,” said Strong after attending his first CompTIA ChannelCon conference in Austin this past August. “At ChannelCon, I saw all the things CompTIA is involved in and it was magnificent and more than I imagined.”

For IT pros that want to help contribute to the diversification of the tech workforce, CompTIA formed a fairly new member community, Advancing Diversity in Technology. The community aims to be the leading voice for the advancement of African-Americans, Hispanics and Latinos within the technology industry who have traditionally been underrepresented. 

 

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Creating IT Futures

A 501(c)(3) charity was established in 1998 by CompTIA, the Information Technology Industry Trade Association, as a way to help people improve their lives through IT careers.

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We help populations that are under-represented in IT and individuals who are lacking in opportunity to prepare for, secure and be successful in IT careers.

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