Where Do We Go From Here…?

By: Jennifer Nietz
Where Do We Go From Here…?

On April 20th of this year, I returned from the AA-ISP Leadership Summit in Chicago, where COACT was the proud recipient of the 2017 Culture Award.  While incredibly humbled and excited, I felt myself asking, “Where do we go from here?”  COACT works day in and day out to improve processes, invest in new tools, invest in our culture, and make the lives of our clients and people better every day.

So, it’s important to me to continue to lay out that roadmap, and if there is one thing I hope you take away from reading, this is that you will never find the end of the road or tip of the iceberg.

So, where do we go from here?  As I look back over the last 4 years of attending the Leadership Summit, I always returned feeling like there was something we were still missing.

However, something was different this year: I felt like we returned with the realization that we have, at the tips of our fingers, some of the industries’ best tools – and the ability to implement industry-leading best practices.  But just because we have these resources and tools doesn’t mean they are utilized to the best of their abilities.  That’s where we go for the remainder of 2017! As we have embarked on our Baldrige Journey, the COACT leaders are addressing how we approach, deploy, integrate, and learn from our processes.  I feel more than ever it’s time to leap into that deploy phase in many areas.

Some of the areas that we will be particularly focused in:

  • Further utilization of Microsoft 365 – I know a lot of you out there reading this have moved to 365 in the recent years and moved your organization off the server and onto the cloud. Some advice: assign the exploration of 365 to someone on your team.  The number of tools and applications that are included in your package are endless.  I assure you there is something that you are missing. Deploy the applications that you think may be most applicable to your organization.  COACT will be taking a look at deploying some of these tools to help us improve in the areas of customer experience, collaboration, and optimizing sales performance.
  • CRM – We all know GIGO – Garbage In, Garbage out. CRMs fall victim to GIGO daily.  The remainder of the year, we are going to be dedicating time and resources to ensure we have the best processes in place to stop GIGO.  Then we are going to take it one step further and change GIGO to CICO – Content In, Content Out.  We are going to enhance our current CRM with relevant and robust content on our prospects and for our client campaigns, then develop industry-leading deliverables to distribute and communicate market leading content.
  • People – COACT’s #1 asset and in my opinion, one of our competitive advantages. We are going to invest in our people.  Not just from a training and certification perspective (even though we are going to make that better), but from a day-to-day coaching perspective.  We will be working on a robust coaching experience and process for each of our people from the frontlines through management.

I think, this month, if I were to give any advice, it would be to take a look at where you have been and where you are going.  Slow down at the yellow light on the operations highway.

I once asked my infant son what the yellow light meant, and he said, “Speed up!”  That’s typical in most of our busy organizations, but try the slow down, take a look around, and then proceed when you feel you have the green to go.

I would welcome your thoughts and comments – Jennifer Nietz at

This article was written by:

Jennifer Nietz
Vice President
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