Pursuing What Matters

I don't normally read Shawn Blanc's work. I blame Scott for referring me to it, but not really. It pointed to the kernel of an idea I've had for a while:

In short, if you want to watch more TV, the universe won’t bother you. If you want to do work that matters, it’s going to be a fight.

"Work that matters" is in the eye of the beholder. I know that, when I decide what that is and focus on it, it gets done. It's how my old Check Point FireWall-1 FAQ got built. It's how two books got published. It's how, even during the times where my heart wasn't always in it, I've managed to evolve and stay employed at Nokia for 10 years and Check Point for nearly 7--a man and his family have to eat and have a place to live, after all.

I suppose I should consider myself very lucky. A lot of people have never experienced that sense of purpose that drives them to do anything more than watch life go by. And yet, I feel like I need to go back to the well for another taste, because even though it is hard work, it pays off in the end.

Information Security is where I make my living. In an increasingly digitized and connected world, it is pervasive. There's a lot I have to say about it that maybe other people are saying, but maybe not the right way or to the right people. These conversations are taking place in board rooms, in the media (both traditional and social), and even amongst the masses as yet another major retailer gets their credit card data compromised.

I've spent many years helping Nokia/Check Point customers in a post-sales capacity. I've also been a bridge between customers, sales, and product development. Each one of these players speaks a different language (kind of like the difference between The Queen's English and whatever us Americans speak), and I'm adept at translating as needed.

The last few years, I've started getting more directly involved in the sales process. I've been working with individual customers through specific sales engagements that help identify the areas of greatest risk and come up with a written plan to improve their security posture. It has taken a couple of years to turn this into a framework that contextualizes the findings and recommendations, but more importantly, can drive change.

It has been great to work with individual customers. With a different platform, I could have a greater, more meaningful impact to more organizations. How I move forward is the subject of many thoughts I am not yet ready to elaborate on publicly at the moment.

What I can say is that this matters. I know it's not going to be easy to see this through, but I'm committing myself to do it.

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