Yesterday was a very exciting day on twitter for yours unruly. My “Speaking CEO” email from a few days back got some very interesting responses, not to mention some personal attacks and accusations of running a pyramid scheme because of the way the subscription page for the Security Sanity™ newsletter was written.
A twello going by the handle of @Zate decided he didn’t like what I had to say much about Principle #2: understand your customer’s world:
“Not even sure what content [your paid newsletter] has, but if “speak in a language your CEO understands” is an example, it’s over priced.”
Well, be that as it may, what’s rather startling, besides the fact that the fellow above seems to think that actually being able to communicate in the language of your customers is a bad thing, is the number of people that either agreed or even took it further.
Basically, they kinda wrote a lot of future emails for me due to this more than slightly misguided mindset.
So let’s keep this short and simple:
Security is there to keep the organization safe.
Security has a set of customers who are the people you support—the people you keep safe.
Most of them don’t give a rats-ares about security, and arguably, they shouldn’t need to know the details besides the equivalent of “look both ways before crossing the street” and “don’t run with scissors.”
They have their own problems—just like you.
They have their own stresses and deadlines and disasters—just like you.
They have their own language—just like you, except theirs is the language of “business” and probably “risk,” even though they may not have a really good understanding of that.
And if you want their respect…if you want to prove to them that you’ve “got their back” and are truly doing your best to keep them safe, you’re going to have to find a way to tell them that in terms – in the language – they understand.
So you’re damn right the upcoming September issue of the paid newsletter is chock full of advice like “speak in the language your CEO understands,” because they’re one of your customers. And if you’re doing your job right, it’s about THEM.
It’s not about you.
So if you think we should be educating the business in “the nuances of cybersecurity risk,” I can tell you now:
- don’t bother giving me your money, because the Security Sanity™ newsletter, or anything else I offer, is really going to be of any use to you, and
- you probably better click that “unsubscribe” link at the bottom of this email now, because otherwise you’re going to think I sound like a broken record for the rest of the month…
Because the reality is, if you want to earn the trust of your customers, you go to your customers, you don’t make the customers come to you. Because if that’s what you want, and you come to them…if you understand their world…and you speak to them about how you help them solve THEIR problems…
…then the’ll knock you over, coming in droves.
If you want some practical advice about better connecting to the world of the business…the world of your customers, then you’re running out of time to subscribe before the September issue goes to the printer.
Use this link: https://securitysanity.com
Scroll all the way to the bottom, and click the big, yellow SUBSCRIBE button with your credit card in your hot-little hand.
And sometime early in the month, the magic envelope will arrive at your door with a window you might not have recognized into the world of your customer.
Or don’t. I’m good either way.
Andrew S. Townley
Archistry Chief Executive
P.S. and I promise I’ll have more armchair analysis of the troll fest before the end of the month (maybe even tomorrow) for your amusement and enjoyment, and hopefully horror that this is really how modern security people think.