Gimmal Blog

Read the latest thought leadership and industry news from the experts at Gimmal!

All Posts

Selling Information Governance to C-Level Executives

Developing the skills necessary to engage in a strategic dialogue with C-Level executives is not easy, especially as it relates to information governance (IG). These individuals have too much on their mind, but there are some things that you can do to make it a lot easier – and have much greater success when you do.

Show the Value of Information Governance

Everyone has the same amount of time in his or her day, 24 hours. However, C-Level executives seem to have less time, especially for administrative tasks that don’t drive profit into the organization. Therefore, when speaking with these individuals, it’s important to get to the point very quickly. If they don’t see the value what you’re selling (i.e. information governance) within the first 30 seconds, C-Level executives will most likely tune out.

Preparation is key. If you don’t prepare what you’re going to say, you’re likely to stumble upon your words. Think about how information governance can create value for the organization and be able to explain in a few words how this value impacts them directly. You need to know how you can make a difference. In particular, how can you increase revenue and profitability and reduce costs by launching an information governance initiative.

Then, stand in front of a mirror and practice your sales pitch. Practice. Practice. Practice.

Explain What’s In It For Them

It’s not all about you! It’s about what’s in it for the C-Level executive. In order to understand what’s in it for the C-Level, you need to have a basic understanding of how you can impact the business. It’s not necessary for you to be a subject matter expert on business management, but you had better be able explain how you can impact the business.

For example, what drives profit to your business? What keeps these C-Level executives awake at night? These are topics you as an information governance professional must understand and be able to articulate. Clearly explain how information governance can put more money into their pockets by impacting the business.

Own The Initiative

Once you have been able to successfully show the value and impact of information governance to the C-Level, you must own the outcome of this initiative. If you have been given the “green light”, then don’t hesitate to move forward. The last thing these executives need is another dependent. Remember, as an IG professional, you were hired by the organization to do a job.

Yes, you may need to put your sales cap on and sell your IG initiative, but after you have done so, it’s time to be an in-house leader and prove that you will own the outcome. It’s not practical to engage with executives every step of the way to get their blessing. If you do, your initiative has a high likelihood of failure. Be proactive and as Nike says “Just Do It.”

Unfortunately there is no Rosetta Stone or Google translation option for learning the language of the C-Suite. You will have to roll up your sleeves, put your sales cap on and drive this one home.

Posted by Chris Caplinger

Related Posts

Why Should Records Management be Important to You

Why should an organization care about records management? When users throughout all departments are creating new records without a thought to how they are cataloged or tagged, the sprawl of records can become a real threat. Unstructured data can lead to compliance issues for highly regulated industries. When proper records management isn’t a top priority, content that should have been disposed of for security purposes is left vulnerable for anyone to find and distribute.  

Creating Compliance in Chaos: A Consultant's Story

Records and Information Management (RIM) is constantly changing and evolving as record managers begin to realize the benefits of automation in their daily operations. In my 6 years of consulting, I have seen everything from heavily manual business processes to automated document management solutions.  Even as time goes by, information professionals continue to face the long-standing hardship of trying to get end users to comply with either internal or external regulations when it comes to records management.  Lately, there has been an apparent shift from ridged business centric solutions to end user centric solutions. 

Gimmal at ARMA International InfoCon 2019

Once a year, members in the records management community come together for ARMA’s annual conference to discuss the latest advancements and best practices for modern information managers.  ARMA, the global authority of information management and governance, hosted this year’s conference, ARMA InfoCon, in Nashville, TN. While attendees were not in the typical “record” industry that Nashville is known for, the location called for a great mix of music and information management knowledge.