Personal message from Net Objectives' new COO, Marc Danziger

July 23, 2015 — Posted by Marc Danziger

Two months ago, I was contentedly leading my life as a singleton consultant down in Los Angeles. I’d managed to get to work for some pretty cool companies – Amgen, CarsDirect.com, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (the Oscars folks), NBC, International Lease Finance Corp. (AIG), Lynda.com and Toyota.

But, as the cliché goes, something was missing. I was finding that I could get a foothold in driving the organizational change the companies needed to make – but that by myself I didn’t have the leverage to consistently create the motion necessary.

And then Al Tweeted that he was looking for someone, and reflexively, I answered him.

I’d followed him on Twitter, read the blog, and occasionally had Twitter debates…but I’d never met him.

He flew my wife and I up, we all talked, and he offered and I said yes.

And here I am. I joined as a consultant, and immediately began doing my consulting thing of commenting on everything I saw. Which was amazing – this place has captured ‘lightning in a bottle’ by bringing together and aligning some of the smartest, most interesting, and nicest people in the industry. And I get to work with all of them…but I digress. The consequence of that has been growth in the quality of teaching, the quality and number of clients, and the overall level of pressure to deliver on everyone here.

So now I’m also COO, and my first job is to spend a little time seeing if I can smooth things a bit, make things flow a little easier, and simplify processes that grew out of the two-person company we once were. I’m hoping to hold up a mirror and apply some of the skills we teach our clients to our own workplace.

I’m on it. But I can hardly wait to engage with our customers as well; I flatly love what I do and now – what we do. When my kids were small, I once explained to them that my job was “making companies change so people who work get more done and are happier doing it.” They thought that was an awesome job, and who am I to disagree with them?

As for me – who am I? – native Californian, husband to the lovely ‘Tenacious G’, dad of three amazing young men, fan of all kinds of music (from old-school punk to Americana to opera), cook, motorcycle rider, blogger (I had a politics blog for a number of years, as you’ll discover when you Google me) and insanely voracious reader.

What’s my take on Agile? Simple – it’s the right approach, but it’s not always itself a solution. It’s not fractal – it has to change with scale. Our goals are really two – to smooth out the internal friction that keeps organizations from being effective at doing whatever it is they do; and to make them engaging places to work so that work can be soulful as well as remunerative. All of us will work far more in our lives than we’ll do anything else, and yet we put up with workplaces and workstyles that seem designed to leach our humanity out hour by hour. 

That makes me unhappy, and I want to change it.

The Net Objectives team has some awesome approaches to solving those problems, and I’m looking forward to having them expand them in the coming year. We have some great clients and great team members – but we could always use more of both.

I’ll be at Agile 2015, wandering around awestruck. Grab me and let’s chat a bit.

Do you really want to make me happy? Teach me something. I’m looking forward to learning a whole lot in the next few years.

 

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About the author | Marc Danziger

Marc Danziger is a proven leader and team-builder, technology visionary and problem solver. He has successfully led programs & developed products in a wide range of technologies for clients ranging from new startups to Fortune 100 companies. His core experience is in three areas:

  • Envisioning new products or systems;
  • Delivering technology, often by turning around troubled projects;
  • Improving organizations by designing and implementing improved processes.



        

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