Dan Kiskis, PhD
My PhD dissertation focused on building software for testing networks of computers. Doing this work required that I understand how all the parts of a system worked together, and how to make it all work better.
Over the course of my career, I've worked at a national research laboratory, a military research laboratory, a small start-up, a small pastry business, and mostly at the University of Michigan. At UM, I have developed software for research projects, acted as a research scientist in the area of sensor networks, ran the IT shop for bioinformatics, ran the operations for the software that was used for all on-line courses on campus, worked as an Enterprise Architect for the central IT department of the university, and managed data analysts in the healthcare field.
Throughout this broad-ranging career, I've observed how organizations and their leaders worked. I've led organizations both through direct authority and through influence. Because I wanted to be a better leader, I studied leadership and organizational development.
The key lesson I've learned is that having and using a strategy is crucial for achieving success.
During my work as an Enterprise Architect, I was responsible for coaching around 50 managers, directors, and other leaders in the university's central IT organization to develop their strategies for their services. I discovered that there was a significant need to provide training and resources to these leaders to help them develop, communicate, and execute their strategy.
At Using Strategy, I want to share what I've learned with people outside of my own workplace. I want to help others have the tools to think strategically and use strategy to improve how they lead their part of the organization.