Take Your Eye Off The Ball

Take your eye off the ball to see the future of IT Service Management

Do you ever wish that you could predict what your customers will need most in 1, 5 or 10 years? Wouldn’t it be great to know what technologies to prepare for and which specialties to focus on? While I can’t provide a crystal ball, I can suggest a way to think about the ever-changing IT landscape.

You’ve heard the advice “keep your eye on the ball,” but what is the underlying message? Surely watching the ball without some precipitated action would fail to connect. No runs, no win. However, with some practice, we can gauge where the ball will be in the future just at the right time to hit it out of the park. The trick is to take your eye off the ball. That’s right, off the ball… the Force be with us!

The reason for this is that we humans are conditioned to think linearly. Going back to our roots, we needed to know where an animal would be based on trajectory if we wanted to hunt or to run. The problem with this is that we tend to look back and evaluate progress linearly, then think to the future (especially the future of ITSM) and project the same linear progression. But things aren’t progressing like they always have—they’re accelerating.

To improve our predictions about customers’ needs, we have to evaluate trends—trends in ITSM, trends in the enterprise space, trends in how advances have come about over time. Think about how such trends might affect your customers in 5 years, then look at the acceleration of surrounding technologies and see if they coincide with the market.

If we keep our eye on the ball, we meet the market right where it is (if we’re lucky). But to get ahead of the game, sometimes we must take our eyes off the ball and break away from linear thinking. By broadening our perspective, we increase the odds of making better decisions and delivering excellent solutions to our customers.

Contributor: Matt Graves, Aptris ServiceNow Developer

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