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July 16, 2019

Teamwork skills are essential for technologists

By Joshua Eyaru

The most important skill for a technologist in today's digitally driven business world is not working with the cloud, cyber-security savviness or managing artificial intelligence — it’s teamwork.


So says Todd Thibodeaux, CEO of CompTIA, in a recent podcast, where he explains how teamwork skills helped him grow from “Lincoln Logs to leadership,” especially when bridging perceived boundaries of age and experience.


Todd speaking


In a podcast developed from Thibodeaux’s presentation at ChannelCon — the technology industry’s premier annual conference for education, networking and partnering —Thibodeaux recounted the benefit of teamwork skills.


A key benefit is the transfer of “institutional knowledge” — ensuring that younger people remain informed as more seasoned workers move up or out of the organization.


“We need to make sure that people are able to work effectively with people older than them —who may have different values, different perceptions,” he said. “And that people at the other end of the scale can work effectively with people younger than them — who have different values and have different expectations.”


From the age of 12, Thibodeaux recalled, he started learning from more-experienced people rather than just interacting with peers. This helped him develop teamwork skills which eventually shaped his leadership skills.


People with developed teamwork skills appreciate the different knowledge and experience others bring to the table – recognizing that the combination helps identify and execute solutions quicker, faster, and more efficiently.


“The best leaders are people who are willing to share and do that,” he said. “They aren't looking for the spotlight and can drive the company without having to be at the forefront of every single thing or being the face.”


Listen to the entire podcast here.


Joshua Eyaru, who is from Uganda, is a fellow with Atlas Corps assigned to Creating IT Futures. He holds a master’s degree in business administration from Kampala International University and is interested in non-governmental organizations management. (His undergraduate degree is in Information Technology.) In 2014, Eyaru co-founded Youth for Reconciliation and Leadership, a community-based organization promoting peace and digital literacy in rural Serere, Uganda. He also works part-time as a digital skills trainer and has helped more than 5,000 young people acquire skills as part of the Google Digital Skills for Africa project.