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UMBC Training Centers is embarking on a nine month push to help organizations understand and evaluate the depth and breadth of current IT modernization challenges. Because our organization holds subject matter expertise in both Information Technology and Leadership Skills training, we have a unique vantage point from which to assess the success (and risk) factors behind IT initiatives. As a result, we have developed a blueprint for success for IT Modernization and a framework for supporting and leveraging the resulting change. I will be sharing posts from Training Center’s many subject matter experts as they share their thoughts on aspects of IT Modernization including cloud, data analytics, agile, cybersecurity, and leadership.

Late winter of 2016, Training Centers received calls from two large civilian government organizations seeking assistance in equipping their people to launch IT Modernization initiatives. For one of the agencies, a member of the US Digital Services team had mandated a modernization of their aging systems. At our initial meeting, we discussed the multitude of “legacy” challenges the agency faced: legacy IT systems, legacy policies, legacy project management, legacy leadership practices, four generations in the workforce, and a reluctance to change. The image below shows the developed curriculum, created in collaboration with the client, to equip the agency to meet the challenge of modernizing the organization. It included training and development in relevant computer science skills, creating a leadership team that functions as “One Leader, One Voice,” providing requisite business and systems analyst programming in data analytics, developing agile project management techniques, and a focus on deploying a change framework.

Over the following two years, over four hundred agency members engaged in a deep IT Modernization training and development program that spanned IT, leadership, and project management. Since then, we have run comprehensive programs for two additional agencies, a large association and an influential insurance company.  I look forward to sharing insights we have learned, and are continuing to learn, in our work and hearing your stories of success and failure along the way.


As executive director of the Center for Leadership and Innovation, Gib works directly with senior executives in a variety of industries, from construction to wealth management. He brings over three decades of experience in organizational stewardship and cultural development and has an extensive history of helping companies drive rapid growth and instill winning cultures. Gib will be a regular contributor in our new blog series on IT Modernization.

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