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15 Tech Industry Leaders Share Their Top Priorities For 2021
Home » 15 Tech Industry Leaders Share Their Top Priorities For 2021

15 Tech Industry Leaders Share Their Top Priorities For 2021

The Covid-19 pandemic caused setbacks in every industry. In the tech industry, where companies are usually only as successful as they are cutting-edge, these unexpected circumstances forced many leaders to change their plans in 2020, thus forcing reprioritization in the new year.

To help their fellow tech leaders better understand how to reshuffle their planned initiatives, 15 members of Forbes Technology Council share their top priorities for 2021 and why these items are at the top of their lists. Their insights may be helpful as your own company moves its priorities around to adapt to the current business climate.

1. Enabling Tech Staff To Work Remotely

Going back to a pre-pandemic “normal” is a fantasy. Following the strategic directions that we set before the pandemic is counterproductive to work outcomes and efficiency. Enabling tech staff to work remotely and facilitating new ways for them to interact with non-tech staff is my new No. 1 priority. – Aaron Spiegel, Center for Congregations

2. Leveraging Low-Code Tools

Do more with less. We are using low-code tools to enhance our sales and marketing processes, and we have been able to build a huge database of contacts. In 2021 we are finessing them to create custom messaging for very specific targets. Imagine a custom message going to cybersecurity managers in Austin whose companies use DarkTrace software—a salesperson can set that up in three minutes. – David Moise, Decide Consulting

3. Ensuring Client Satisfaction

Client satisfaction is at the top of my strategic priorities list for 2021. Throughout the pandemic, most companies have been sticking with vendors and partners that they know versus introducing new ones. We focus on taking care of our internal team, having a corporate bond and making sure all team members understand how critical our clients are. – Steve Taplin, Sonatafy Technology

4. Supporting Clients’ Digital Transformation Journeys

In 2020, we learned that all companies are technology companies, and all should be embarked on a digital transformation journey. Companies that lagged in these areas struggled to stay afloat as they transitioned to a remote workforce model and digital operations. In 2021 we will continue to partner with our clients in executing their digital transformation initiatives and weaving these changes into their culture. – Danny Acuna, Danvir Consulting

5. Promoting Sustainable Business Practices

In 2020 we proved that we’re capable of immense transformation in the service of public health. In response to Covid-19, the face of work became digital, and it’s estimated that carbon dioxide emissions dropped by 2.4 gigatons (7%) globally compared to 2019. This record-setting reduction can become a blip or, if we choose, could be a springboard for prioritizing sustainable practices, which are also a public health imperative. – Jennifer Redmon, Cisco Systems

6. Accelerating Client-Side Protection

We’re on a mission to transform the efficacy of Web application security, so this year our focus is on accelerating the adoption of client-side Web application firewall protection that includes AI-driven vulnerability, awareness, detection and response capabilities. We’ve invested heavily in our operations to handle the explosive demand we see for these types of solutions. – Jason Hollander, Cymatic

7. Focusing On Speed, Flexibility And Agility

The events of 2020 taught us that speed, flexibility and agility are critical to the support of our business. From a strategic perspective, we will continue to leverage these principles as we embark on the planning of our digital initiatives in 2021, focusing on rapid time to value and, as a result, competitive differentiation. – Kim Huffman, Elastic


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8. Keeping Employees Engaged

The disruptions of 2020 were significant for many technology leaders, but our top strategic priorities continue to be around remote work and improving employee morale. Much of our team is working remotely, and with many day-to-day life projects being canceled (concerts, evenings out, movies and so on), everyone on the planet is feeling “cooped up.” Keeping everyone on our team engaged is our priority. – Anthony Presley, Custom Business Solutions

9. Being Proactive And Intentional

In 2020, so many changes outside our control pushed us into a reactive mode as we adapted quickly to keep pace. In 2021, we need to go back to being proactive and intentional about how we run our business. First, we need to reflect on what we learned from 2020 and then plan a new path forward that considers our new reality. We will be more prepared to handle whatever comes our way! – Amy Czuchlewski, Bottle Rocket

10. Driving Innovation

A relentless focus on innovation is the priority as we prepare for the new normal. We need organizations that can capitalize on the changes to emerge stronger and more adaptive. To do this, we have to rethink everything about how we operate, drive urgency, execute with agility and hire talent. Diversity, inclusion and belonging can’t just be words on a page; they must be embedded deeply into our company. – Anneka Gupta, LiveRamp

11. Refining Remote Work Processes

Remote work became mainstream in 2020. For many companies, including my own, 2021 will be the year that these remote processes are refined and perfected. It became clear in 2020 that businesses must prioritize adaptability to be ready for whatever lies ahead. Remote work is a promising avenue to promote this. – Marc Fischer, Dogtown Media LLC

12. Bringing Team Members Together

We saw huge productivity gains while working from home in 2020, but simultaneously saw huge gaps in team bonding and interpersonal connections. New members in my teams were hit especially hard since they have never met their teammates in person. My top priority for 2021 is to have our people get some informal time together and let teammates support each other through the next set of challenges. – Chetan Kalyan, Meesho

13. Fostering Work-Life Balance

With the backdrop of the pandemic that has forced many organizations to work from home, one of my top priorities for 2021 is balancing work and home life. In 2020, many people tended to work too much, and some are burned out. In 2021, we should take better care of ourselves, prioritize our well-being and emotional health and turn off our work computers to spend and enjoy time with family, exercising or seeking entertainment. – Bob Fabien Zinga, Directly, Inc./U.S. Navy Reserve

14. Improving Product Simplicity

In 2021, we will simplify. Our software is designed to help business owners, and since many people are entering the digital space for the first time, we’ve had to rethink our design and tutorial for new customers. Overall, our goal is to make it even easier for people to navigate our website, use our software and engage with our business. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

15. Gaining A Broader Perspective On A Changing World

In 2020, we were reminded that the world is unpredictable. Global transformations in politics, business, commerce and culture will dominate 2021. My priority remains the same: diversify and develop deep expertise. Getting out of my bubble to gain a broader perspective on how the world is changing is critical to identifying strategic diversification opportunities that further my organization’s mission. – Suzanne Russo, Pecan Street Inc.

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