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Keys to Growing

One of the Keys to Growing is Being Curious & Confident

Albert Einstein once stated “The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.” As a recent college graduate, this quote has helped influence my decisions in college and starting a career. I was always very quiet and did not like being outside of my comfort zone…until recently…my curiosity helped me step out of my comfort zone. Being curious and confident was the reason why I graduated in the field of Information Science Technology (IST), and why I chose to intern at BC in the Cloud.

While in college, I faced many important decisions in my life. When I started my freshman year at Penn State I wanted to be a computer scientist and develop software. I’ve always had a great passion in technology and thought this field would be great. It took me about two years to realize that I was losing interest in computer science, the course materials were overly complicated and lacked excitement. But I didn’t want to stop pursuing my passion in technology. Stuck, I felt wondering if I should stay in this field. Then a friend told me about a major called Information Science Technology (IST). What he told me blew my mind because I could learn and enjoy development without taking excessively complex engineering courses. IST breaks up into two sections: Integrations and Application, and Design and Development. Also, this major does not just provide development courses, but courses in networking, telecommunication, cyber security and project management. After learning about this, I became curious, but also afraid. I was afraid that if I decided to change my major, people would think of me as a person who only just works on computers (IT guy stereotype). I ended up following my curiosity and studied IST. And I don’t regret it at all.

Curiosity is also the reason why I decided to take an internship at BC in the Cloud. During my time in college, I only had experience in technical support and the help desk environment. I felt very comfortable working there. I thought to myself, “I can get used to working here.” But in reality, it was not my ideal job. I decided to see what was being offered at the Penn State Career Fair. Every career fair before my senior year I had always applied to technical support or help desk roles. I felt that I was not good enough for a development position. I didn’t realize until my senior year that I should really step out of my comfort zone and look at more challenging, development positions, as this was my passion.

At the 2018 Spring Career Expo I was determined to find companies that were looking for developers. I went around the expo handing out my resume and giving my sales pitch to various companies. I had a good feeling about this career expo. I felt more confident and eager to find this new role I was striving for. I ended up speaking to 12 companies, BC in the Cloud being one of them. After the expo, three companies contacted me about job openings. One was BC in the Cloud, looking for a developer internship and the other two were companies that were looking for full time technical support roles.

I had to make another very important decision. The technical support positions sounded the most logical since they were full-time, and the safe route since I already had experience in that field. BC in the Cloud was only hiring an internship role, but it was what I went to school for. I asked friends and families for their insight on this situation and each of them said, “Go for the internship!” Even though everyone wanted me to go for the internship I was pushing for the other offer. It felt more comfortable. I closed my eyes for a good 5 minutes and thought to myself this is going to affect my future. I did not want to be stuck talking to customers on the phone every single hour, 5 days a week for the rest of my life. That just wasn’t me. The internship will give me more experience and will help prepare me for future development possibilities. With that being said, I accepted the internship from BC in the Cloud. I knew this was my opportunity to get out there and try something new, out of my comfort zone.

Now, as I write this article I am proud to say I am a DevOps intern at BC in the Cloud. I’m very happy I took this route. I am learning new things every day and getting to do what I am passionate about. The first day on my internship I was able jump in and get my hands dirty. BC in the Cloud made feel like I was part of the team, not just a fly on the wall. It is way better than my previous technical support experience where I felt very distant from the company. So with that I offer my advice for all college students, follow your curiosity and be confident in yourself. You might miss a very life changing opportunity if you stay in a field or position that you are losing or have lost interest in. Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it got me an amazing internship.

What is Risk Management? I’m still figuring it out…

Over the years I’ve heard the same question, “What do you want to do with your life?” When I was younger, I always responded quickly, “I want to be an Astronaut.” Or, “I want to be a Movie Star.”

Now when you ask me that question, I will respond with, “I have absolutely no idea.”

My name is Angela Prass. I will be a Junior at Syracuse University this fall studying Information Management and Technology. Recently, I received an internship opportunity at BC in the Cloud, along with two other talented individuals.

Along my long journey in college of not knowing what to do for the rest of my life, I stumbled upon a class titled, “Enterprise Risk Management.” I received a good grade in this class and wanted to explore this concept on a real-world scale. I thought to myself, “I like to take risks. This is something I’d be interested in.”

One afternoon, I was scrolling through LinkedIn and found BC in the Cloud. So… I took the risk. I applied for an internship. A few days later I landed an interview. Next, a second interview. And now I have the opportunity to gain valuable experience from the risk that I took.

Amazing opportunities can come from pushing your comfort zone. I have now learned that Risk Management isn’t about denying risk; however, it is about accepting risk and developing a plan so that you can continue to push your limits. To sum it up in a single simple word–growth.

Much like preparing for an interview, after the risk of applying was taken, how will you plan for the outcome? How will you stand out, organize yourself, and approach the uncertainty?

Or not knowing what you want to do with your life. How will you plan ahead? How far will you step out of your comfort zone? Will you take a class you’ve never even heard of? Well, let me tell you…

It turns out that taking a class that I had no idea what the title even meant, paid off. It gave me a path, an internship, and a passion. Risk is in our everyday lives. Preparing for it only allows us to continue to grow. Now my statement has turned from, “I have no idea,” to “I have an idea.”

And that’s what growth is… isn’t it? I’ve learned to grow and to create. To be comfortable being uncomfortable. And most importantly, it is okay to ask for help… the only risk associated with asking is receiving knowledge.

BC in the Cloud thinks of the unthinkable, so companies can push past any obstacle, take risks, and be prepared to persevere through all the ambiguities that accompany their success. Everyone should be empowered to pursue their dreams without hesitation. The team at BC in the Cloud provides their expertise to help companies grow. Risk Management is not about being afraid of risk, it’s about becoming confident in your own ability.

The Holistic Approach to Planning

2017 has shaped up to be a historic year in terms of disasters. In the last 3 months alone, we’ve seen some catastrophic security breaches and cyber attacks along with other disruptions (i.e. active shooters, severe devastation from natural disasters – wildfires, earthquakes, and hurricanes) hit organizations. The need for recovery and response plans is apparent, but leaves the question of how can I better prepare? One way to improve these plans is taking a holistic approach by incorporating Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) into planning efforts. As OCEG states, “GRC is the integrated collection of capabilities that enable an organization to reliably achieve objectives, address uncertainty and act with integrity”.

The ideas and principles of Business Continuity Planning and Governance Risk and Compliance are nothing new, but they go hand and hand. One great thing about BC in the Cloud is that it allows planners the flexibility to incorporate both programs into one centralized system. We realize that when a disruption big or small hits our organization, the impacts can be felt like a shock wave across the entire organization.  With a centralized planning process that includes tracking regulatory and/or policy changes, planners can evolve their program by sending a unified message and vision to the organization, stakeholders and clients. The results are a more effective planning strategy and a response plan that is not only integrated with the organizations mission, but allows for a centralized repository and reporting across programs. Incorporating GRC into your plans promotes a proactive approach to planning, so when a disruption occurs the response message and policies are clear.  The GRC functionality within BC in the Cloud allows planners to document policy change, better understand and mange risks, analyze, mitigate and incorporate the changes directly to continuity and recovery plans. In addition, a User defined workflow makes staying up to date with audit requirements and policy reviews and revisions is easy.

By moving away from a siloed, fragmented approach of planning, organizations can more effectively comply with regulations, mature their programs, mitigate risks and most importantly respond to ANY disruption with both integrity and ethics. When it’s done right the benefits of GRC include consistency in processes, better quality information, reduced costs, reduced operational impact and overall efficiency. For more information on incorporating GRC into your planning efforts contact a BC in the Cloud Representative.