As we all work through the various impacts of the novel coronavirus – from the depressing and the serious to the merely inconvenient – it's vital that as much industry and business as is safe and possible continues. When thousands are dying, it can seem trite to even consider this, but it is not only important in terms of us having a vibrant post-virus world; IT is an important contributor to sustaining our lives and communications today, and also a vital element to finding ways to overcome the virus.
But that business-continuation demands some very different approaches and thinking; therefore, whenever possible over the coming weeks I'll be asking executives from IT vendors and partners to discuss their thoughts around the marketing changes, challenges, and - yes - also the opportunities that this pandemic is creating. I've called this series "Marketing in Challenging Times" - that's not to skirt around the issue of COVID-19, but to acknowledge the fact that the "challenging times" are likely to extend well beyond the point at which the pandemic is controlled, contained, or beaten...and also of course perhaps some of the lessons-learned and silver-linings-discovered will continue as well. Everyone brings their own perspectives to these conversations; as a minimum we hope they are cathartic, and at best they might provide a new idea or inspiration.
My guest in this installment of the series is Molly Presley, who leads the global product marketing efforts at Qumulo. On a personal level, working from home has been a blessing for Molly - and no doubt occasionally a balancing-challenge too! - as she has been able to spend lots more time with her toddler. The balancing of team members' work and lives is also what she sees as a major focus for her and the whole Qumulo leadership team in these COVID-tinged times. While productivity is up (which is great) it needs to be supported without engendering burn-out. That can mean a mix of new tools as well as motivational surprises. In terms of its customer and prospect engagement, Molly broadly agrees with things I've heard from her peers over the last few months - but also points out that curtailing an over-reliance on trade shows and embracing new engagement models can be just as good for customers as it is for Qumulo.