Fascination with SDL WCMS and SDL Tridion

Tina Turner's "Simply the Best" pulls all the right fascination triggers, but it's really a song about love and trust.

I'm back from a team meeting and am compelled to say, "Yes! Validation!" My peers are fascinating, the strongest fascination trigger is trust, and I trust SDL's WCMS as an organization.

Fascinating People

I've learned only a fraction of how fascinating my colleagues are, in addition to the Tridion geekery
A few fly airplanes, fish for marlin, or partake in cheese and wine culture in the Napa and Sonoma valleys. One takes day-long motorcycle trips around the Napa and Sonoma valleys. One consultant has done everything from dance to multiple sports to multiple martial arts, but still admits to being somewhat shy. Hint: you can be an excellent public speaker and still be introverted (check out Networking for People Who Hate Networking).

Over the last few weeks I've heard some spine-tingly, scary childhood memories. I was impressed by a friend so passionate about a topic he had to switch to his native tongue.* I was intrigued by stories of what European travel means for Europeans. And I was enthralled by a friend's explanation of the grammar intricacies between Dutch, Spanish, and English using examples from Star Wars.
If you were there and noticed, everyone was smiling, including the few we didn't know could smile. ;-)

*I've heard the "I've run out of English" idea before, but usually to help explain why Olga, the Ukrainian teacher at my dance studio job was resorting to bad words.

There's more content from that kick-off that could (should) be written down. Videos and words can't reflect the fun and passion and expertise of these resources. You might be able to guess who's who from the above, but no names are listed here because these aren't my stories to share (hint hint). I can only share how fascinated I am by the group.

Fascination Triggers

What's your fascination score? Sally Hogshead describes 7 fascination triggers that can increase your message's value. See the slide below to learn about:
  • power
  • lust
  • mystique
  • alarm
  • prestige
  • vice
  • trust

View more presentations from Sally Hogshead

This is an over-generalization, but among the group, I see prestige and trust being the strongest triggers. It's not about having power or being mysterious, nor is the group particularly phased by urgency and alarm, which makes perfect sense in a team-based collaborative environment. These guys and girls are cool under pressure and are focused on getting the job done. And it's okay, encouraged even, to earn recognition through hard work and achievement.

Even better, the prestige focuses on skill as well as being helpful (the group seems to compete at who can help the best and fastest). That's a fascinating win-win because management recognizes good work with the only catch is that you have to do the work and occasionally let others know what you're doing. ;-)

We want things to be clear and understandable so mystique is only big in terms of the mysteries of  technology. You'll often hear "What does this API do? How did you do that" or "How did you solve that problem?" with a sense of oooh and aaah.

Vice can be seen in the humor with the occasional tease, or "bad" joke. But with company DNA from the Netherlands, going out for beers means a good social time and the lust trigger is simply centered around the finer things in life such as good food, enjoying nature, and camaraderie.

The message is, "Time's short so work hard and enjoy your earned rewards. You're among trustworthy friends." And trust is the hardest trigger to earn and keep.


 Stephen M.R. Covey describes the Speed of Trust as coming from a person's:
  • integrity
  • intent
  • capabilities
  • results
He uses a tree metaphor to describe integrity is your core roots, intent is your direction (trunk), your capability is seen in your branches, and results are the leaves and fruit you produce. We can simplify this to "accountability."

Trust is a practical business concern and will make or break your organization, your product, or your implementation. For example credit (trust)worthiness or rating measures you intent, capability, and history to determine what loans you qualify for and at what rate.

We can't make people trust us anymore than we can really motivate them, but we can create an environment that fosters accountability. Trust is also highly personal. Just like a work harassment complaint, it's not what you say happened, it's what they think happened. (Did you catch the vice trigger in that?)

My Trust in This Group

I left a job and peers I loved in the city I grew up in because of my fascination with the Tridion product and SDL people (scary, yeah I know). Six years in IT with half of that getting to know the product surprisingly means something. My family trusted the decision, which I didn't make lightly.

In all honestly, Christy, my BSMSO*, muse, and most fascinating person I know, helped me find the courage to apply to The Most Fascinating Organization in the World.

*Baby sugar momma SO or significant other. By the way, she's a stronger writer than me (or is that "than  I (am)?"), plays video games, and has a wonderful sense of humor. Neener neener!
I think Christy owes the World a new blog post.
Leave a comment on her blog to convince her. </personal plug>
Management's message lines up amazingly with things I've unnecessarily worried about. There's the standard message that professional services should do well in projects and marketing and sales should sell the software, but also:
  • Sell well-fitted licenses. Yes! I've been a strong advocate of well-fitted solutions here and here.
  • The complex CXM/WEM market is made simple with a strong and flexible CMS solution. Coincidentally, Ian Trustcott previously wrote about credibility, you have to hear him speak at next week's Innovate conference.
  • Education is vital. Yes! I love sharing, learning, and spreading the knowledge.
  • Community is important. Triple win: SEO-goodness for the product and would-be customers, permission for individuals to share and develop themselves, and ultimately tangible help for customers.
We have the right people, with amazing capabilities, and we've delivered results in 2011 (well they did) and will continue to do so in 2012.

One of the meeting's themes was "simply the best" (cue Tina Turner's song). Listen carefully to the lyrics and notice it's not about being the best, it's about trust and love.

Nearly every management presentation mentioned trust at some point. We sell (nearly) infinitely scale-able software and manage limited professional resources, but the speed and magnitude we do so is enhanced (or limited) by trust.

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