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IT Heroes: Stand Up and Be Recognized

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IT heroes
Image: Michele Paccione - stock.adobe.com
Communications technology has always been the lifeblood of a business, but not since the pandemic hit has evidence of that been so resounding — globally. A failure in communications for any business would have meant disaster on top of the disruption wreaked by COVID-19.
 
My colleague Eric Krapf, GM of Enterprise Connect, put it well in “Communications: Making the World Go ‘Round,” a post he wrote back in July. “This has been our industry’s moment to shine, and communications technologies have provided a rare ray of light in an otherwise awful situation for people in both their work and personal lives.”
 
It’s recognition long overdue. Communications is like second nature, so ingrained as part of the workday that people tend to forget that those calls, texts, and meetings don’t just happen magically. But with the pandemic, people who had forgotten or never even registered the significance of communications took notice — and, in many cases, literally overnight.
 
Over these many months, we’ve heard so many stories from our community members about the hurdles they’ve jumped to keep communications flowing and collaboration alive amid the disruption… the health care team called into action to set up communications at a COVID-19 care facility, the manager who worked relentlessly to keep hotlines open at a nonprofit call center, the contact center team that fast-tracked a cloud migration to move agents home just as call volumes skyrocketed.
 
At the same time, we heard the cries for social justice and the need to bring home the ideals of diversity and inclusion — the other pivotal issues of 2020. These causes have found advocates in our community, as we heard during the diversity and inclusion networking session and Women in Communications roundtable that took place at the Enterprise Connect virtual event held in August. Here we heard of personal commitments from hiring managers to take biases out of talent acquisition, of team leads building in support structures for diverse voices, and of female managers pushing for the same titles and roles as their male counterparts.
 
We took inspiration from these stories, and from that, an idea was born: the Enterprise Connect IT Hero Award.
 
With this new award, we look to honor enterprise IT professionals and teams who go above and beyond their day-to-day communications/collaboration responsibilities to provide exceptional service, vision, and expertise to their organizations. Our enterprise IT heroes will have shown outstanding initiative and dedication in helping to make a difference inside and outside of their enterprises in the past year, from COVID-19 response to a call for equity or beyond. With this award, we look to bring these heroes to the forefront as a model to others.
 
We will recognize our IT Heroes at the Enterprise Connect Virtual event, Communication & Collaboration: 2024, taking place next March 9 and 10.
 
We are now accepting nominations for the 2021 IT Hero Award; the deadline to enter your candidate/s is Monday, Jan. 18, 2021. To be eligible, individuals or teams must work within an enterprise’s IT organization with a focus on communications/collaboration for the enterprise.
 
Please consider entering a hero or hero team you know and spread the word about this opportunity for recognition well-deserved!

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