“I met Harris in 2005 when he was contracted out by a former employer of mine. Harris was brought in at a time of great uncertainty and inefficiency as the organization was going through a period of extreme growth. Harris’ proven methods helped to instil structure through improved policies, procedures and processes to turn us into a world class IT department. In addition to organizational structure, Harris also instilled structure into the lives of our individual team members. Regardless of what policies were in place we needed the right people to implement them. Through Harris’ mentoring platform, he worked with each team member individually to increase staff productivity by improving communication, leadership and time management skills. By instilling discipline into the individuals and into the department, Harris helped us to adapt to the changes associated with organizational growth and left us in a position to be successful as a department and as individuals. ”
Sirios Capital Management
“Harris brought tremendous energy and depth of industry knowledge to his facilitation and advice. As a result of his insight and guidance during the planning stage we have very successfully merged our IT and Broadcast Engineering Teams into one Television Technology Group based around a formal service management framework.”
Head of Operations & Technology
Television New Zealand
“Organizations with great products and plenty of resources often fail to achieve great results. Kern’s proven approach to this problem is grounded in years of experience and substantiated by the many world-class organizations he has touched.”
CIO, GE Capital Global Consumer Finance
A few years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Harris Kern as he was facilitating a presentation on ‘Making More Money With Your Existing Resources’ in our corporate offices for a team of senior managers. Going into the class I was predisposed to the notion that this would be another dry seminar and at the end I would walk away with a few new ideas, but nothing I could not have figured out by myself.
When the class started, I was immediately struck by Mr. Kern’s positive attitude and understanding of some the typical issues we face in the corporate world. His approach and enthusiasm quickly captured my attention and kept my attention for the duration of the 2-hour session. His approach to time management; leadership; motivation, communication gave me a better insight on how to approach these challenges with my team. After the class was completed I found myself reflecting on what Mr. Kern had taught us so much so, that I decided to bring Harris back in for some one on one situations with some of my team members. After 15 years of management, this was a first. I brought Harris in to mentor some of my junior staff on time management. Time management was key to some of the staff simply because we are constantly being asked to do more with less and by utilizing Mr. Kern’s approach to time management, we found that our productivity went up. The second class we brought Harris in for was leadership. I had some brilliant engineers, but being a brilliant engineer does not make a brilliant leader. Once again, with Mr. Kern’s leadership and a one on one setting, we ended up making a couple of brilliant engineers, excellent leaders.
Vice President Operations
“It’s not always easy to evaluate ones IT organizational strengths, weaknesses … both perceived and real, along with its business and technology objectives. Harris’s personal assessment, guided “self-evaluation” processes, along with his practical experiences help develop a road map that can lead to an orderly organizational, people, process, and technology restructuring.”
Director, IT Infrastructure Services
Like many companies in the new economy, The Weather Channel had grown from a niche “idea” into a major corporation, growing its IT systems, architecture, and platforms along the way. While this worked well enough to meet the company’s short-term needs, it did not provide a strong foundation for long-term growth. Specifically, the Weather Channel needed a solution that would allow for the rapidly growing number of platforms and technologies and the deployment of new services. With offices spread across the Western Hemisphere and a commitment to remain the industry leader in providing accurate and timely weather information to consumers, The Weather Channel re-focused its efforts toward getting its IT infrastructure in place in order to provide the backbone for future growth.
The Weather Channel sought guidance from Harris Kern Working as a team with The Weather Channel’s IT staff they set out to transform its operations into a world-class IT infrastructure that operates 24×7 and can withstand nearly any disaster, whether wrought by Mother Nature, technology failure, or human error.
This was a daunting task. To build The Weather Channel’s IT infrastructure from the ground up without interrupting day-to-day operations along the way. We met with The Weather Channel employees (from all levels of expertise and various functions) to produce an assessment of the company’s current and future IT needs. As a result of this assessment, we recommended that The Weather Channel move from fragmented IT “silos,” mainly departmental in nature, to a centralized IT infrastructure. This move would enable the company to scale its IT operations and leverage its IT investment to allow for future growth.
In a little less than a year the loose-knit IT staff of 20-plus employees grew to a 100-plus person IT staff that keeps the U.S. and Latin America on top of the weather, in addition to the millions of people who access www.weather.com on a daily basis.
- Developed a complete IT Organization structure
- Recruited a VP of Operations
- Implemented a Company-wide “Solutions Center” to provide Technical Support
- Implemented a Change Management Process
- Implemented a Production Acceptance Process
- Provided Interim Operational management of the IT function
- Provided 1×1 performance coaching to management and staff
- Provided 1×1 leadership coaching
The Weather Channel
“Harris’s experience, knowledge, and thought leadership helped guide us through the transition from mainframe to an open systems computing environment. His candid assessment of our strategy and staff helped us formulate a plan that resulted in a smooth transition to this new computing environment.
I have also found value in his education materials, which presents an easy to understand guide to many of today’s technologies and organizational issues.”
William L. Parker
Vice President Information Services
“When I need advice on IT issues I seek out one of the most prominent experts in this field, Harris Kern. This best-selling author has travelled all over the world advising Enterprise Global 2000 companies on how to improve their IT performance. His proven philosophies emphasize the need to focus first on organization, people, processes, and finally on technology, rather than the more common reverse order.”
Standard and Poor’s
“Our customer service delivery model was mediocre at best. Our technology was dated and our processes were bureaucratic, however we were extremely profitable and without competition there was never a sense of urgency to improve.
At the turn of the 21st century competition emerged over night and when our employees wouldn’t grasp change immediately I located Harris kern. Mr. Kern assessed the enterprise, facilitated a presentation on change/self-discipline, designed a new strategy and roadmap, and mentored key individuals and management. The results were improved customer service and a highly productive and even more profitable enterprise.”
Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited