Just Follow the Hot Air Balloon

Leadership vs Management

Management has to be accountable for performance.  Management exists for the sake of the institution’s results.  It has to start with the intended results and has to organize the resources of the institution to attain these results– Peter F. Druker

Leadership refers to an individual’s ability to influence, persuade, and enable others to contribute toward a goal, while it falls to management to effectively and profitably engage an enterprise’s resources to accomplish the desired result.  Influence and inspiration separate leaders from managers [who rely on a more tangible tool kit]. At the Advantage Co, I believe success is built on effective management. It is management that shoulders the weight of results. 

“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something that you want done because he wants to do it.” – President Dwight D. Eisenhower 

Over the past 50+ years, I have read scores of books and countless articles from history’s leading experts expounding on their particular recipe for successful leadership.  From Sun Tzu to Aristotle to Caesar to Machiavelli to Peter Drucker to Doonesbury to Tony Robbins – I’ve inhaled it all thoughtfully, but they typically failed to resolve the undeniable fact that the truly informed, alert, and courageous refuse to be led.

Coercion [death, jail, the draft, etc.] and bribery [everyone has their price] work in the most primal of situations, but as the gravity of the situation subsides, these tried and true leadership tools give way to an insidious appeal to the cravings of vanity, power, fear, wealth, hunger, jealousy, hate, desire, prejudice, or social status of the most susceptible.  It never fails to humor me when I see what some fools will do to get a reservation at Momofuku Ko or into the right club/school/party/group/company/etc., but it unquestionably worries me when fear invites jealousy, hate, and prejudice to the leadership weaponry.  Unfortunately, ‘leaders’ today often resort to these sinister motivations … but history shows this is certainly nothing new.

Leadership is the ability to create an environment where people are motivated to give a 100% effort toward the desired result, while power is the ability to turn that intention into reality.  In that context, I’ve found that after 40 years in various successful [yet often contentious] leadership roles that it is more enjoyable and rewarding to build with partners who have their own courageous vision and sincerely want me to help them bring it to fruition.  For me, building is the challenge and the reward.  So, my advice to those that must lead is to simply find those that will truly find joy in helping you build and be generous in your appreciation … and leave the endless array of perfidious leadership tactics to the narcissists … but if you want to be successful – learn to manage effectively.

Capax Global: A Remarkable Partnership

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I am often asked how it all got started.  The usual answer has been June 6, 1978, when I rented the original 450 sq’ Stereo Advantage space in the Village of Williamsville, NY.  It is a convenient response, but it doesn’t do justice to how so many opportunities actually took root well after that moment in time.

When asked about the start of the Capax experience, the easy answer has always been 1993, when Joe Kreuz and I launched Advantage Professionals.  From there the narrative quickly moves on to Tom Thomson and the launch of Advantage Systems Professionals [now c1secure].  That is the inflection point.  That is when we entered the IT market.  From there the story builds on AP Metro – and it is a great story.  

But the genesis of Capax Global truly starts from that auspicious moment when Jerry Hawk and John Baiocco decided that the AP Metro staffing model was dated and that there was a new IT services business to be built [and that business turned out to be Capax Global].

Over the past dozen years, I can say without a doubt that nothing has been more successful in the annals of the Advantage Co than Capax Global and its progeny.  Although the Capax Global plot was worthy of a masterful mystery, it never failed to deliver success. 

For the Advantage Co, the Capax partnership, and me – nothing has been more rewarding.  And although Capax Global has been sold to [and internationally launched by] Hitachi, I am confident that there will be many more chapters to write with Jerry and Jessica down the road.

The Capax experience, however, lives on in our Unified Global Archiving.  UGA is now made up of 5 great companies – each with their own future to build:

    1. Capax Discovery
      This is the license holder of our key resources [e.g. EAS*, IDOL, HPCA, CAMM, Nearpoint, Supervisor, etc].
    2. PremCloud
      This is the world-class deliverer of all we offer.  PremCloud provides the advanced professional services, support & maintenance, managed services, hosted services, and developmental services that our customers require.  It is the foundation on which all of UGA is built.
    3. Sceven
      This is our software development company.  Right now it is servicing only our UGA companies, but it will soon be servicing an international array of customers.  There is almost nothing our worldwide team of programmers and developers can’t build [specializing in turning software into SaaS].
    4. Zovy Cloud
      This is our cloud hosting resource for all of our UGA offerings in general and specifically for our Zovy Cloud Archive and ZHub.
    5. Data Detect
      This is our newest company which has developed Data Detect 1.0, GDPR Services, and Data Supervisor.  It is our most promising start-up … and the native software is entirely ours [developed by Sceven].
      Data Detect 1.0 is the premier solution for capturing, cleaning, managing, and providing access to all of our customer’s dark data [providing a consistent, defensible manner in which to apply critical compliance, purge, or retain decisions].
      Data Detect 1.0 enables organizations to move and analyze data from anywhere to anywhere, with Data Detect 1.0 acting as the ‘data police’ in between.  Whether our customers are simply managing their corporate data responsibly, going to the cloud, complying with GDPR data privacy regulations, or merging with another company, Data Detect 1.0 provides the capability to locate, identify, categorize, and properly manage the dark data scattered throughout their organization.

The story keeps getting better, but as I told a group of the young guns at UGA yesterday, the story begins with Jerry and John.  We owe our ongoing success to their vision and their ability to bring it to life.

  • EAS [Enterprise Archive Solutions] 9.0 and 10.0 have been developed specifically to address the most stringent demands from modern global enterprises in terms of operational functionality and compliance requirements.  Hundreds of the world’s largest organizations across a multitude of industries leverage EAS today as a critical component of their information governance program.  EAS provides a single repository for the long-term storage and management of data generated from emails, file servers, SharePoint, social media applications, instant messaging applications, legacy systems such as SAP, audio and video recordings, etc.  Furthermore, EAS allows enterprises to perform Search, eDiscovery, and Supervision across all of their archived content, no matter where it resides.
    Aside from the ability to capture a vast range of content types, EAS separates itself as the world’s premiere archiving solution in that it now has the ability to be deployed in virtually any capacity.  Originally established as the leader in on-premise archiving, EAS 10.0 can now operate in a hosted or hybrid state.  Additionally, EAS 10.0 can be hosted in a variety of locations, including an organization’s private data center, a third-party data center, our Zovy Cloud, and Microsoft Azure.  With its hybrid capabilities, multinationals can deploy EAS on-premise for their Japanese division, in a private data center for their German division, in the Zovy Cloud for their U.S. division, in a third-party data center for their South African division, in Microsoft Azure for their Canadian division, and so on.  Regardless of the chosen deployment structure, organizations leveraging EAS have the ability to access and take action on the entirety of their global archive, all through our single total access optic.
    The future of EAS is exciting, as we will continue to develop and expand upon core capabilities while innovating to meet the changing demands of tomorrow.  We are committed to building EAS in conjunction with Microsoft services to optimize organizations’ use of Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft Azure, providing greater accessibility to the archive for both end-users and administrators, offering our customers new deployment capabilities through the leveraging of additional cloud services, and developing new connectors to capture an increasing number of enterprise content types.  Schedule a demo today to learn how EAS can unify your information management practices and help you achieve your long-term organizational goals.