• shane@countryexec.com
  • Seguin, Texas
Guest posts
GovLoop Guest Posts Exclusive – March 2021

GovLoop Guest Posts Exclusive – March 2021

Howdy again folks! It’s late May in Texas and it’s definitely starting to heat up in my neck of the woods. Professionally I’ve just returned from a TAGITM strategic planning session in Austin. As soon as I got back, I had to finalize and submit all my operational and capital budget requests for fiscal year 2021-22, a process that takes about 9 months to complete soup to nuts. It’s fun though! You’re planning out the future of technology on behalf of your employer. I view it as the vision aspect to my role, and another one of those requirements I consider a privilege to drive. As for today’s submission, this is the third in a series of three posts providing a high-level overview of my work as a GovLoop featured contributor in January through March earlier this year. Without further ado, here’s GovLoop Guest Posts Exclusive for March 2021.

3 Easy Tips To Improve At Public Speaking

GovLoop guest posts

In January of 2020 I did my first pseudo speaking role for the Texas Public Power Association (TPPA), another organization I volunteer for on behalf of my employer. Myself and two of my peers across Texas stood up TPPA’s Cybersecurity Committee per their request. This was the initial member event held to promote cybersecurity awareness for their member agencies. Somehow this sparked the busiest year I’ve ever had with public speaking.

As the requests started coming in, and in addition to my professional obligations speaking in front of city council when needed, I realized I needed to step up my public speaking game. Doing what I always do, I dug in and read a book titled “The Quick & Easy Way To Effective Speaking” by one Mr. Dale Carnegie. Mr. Carnegie was an expert in the field in the early 1900’s and come to find out the principles to becoming a better public speaker have not changed much over the years. This article summarizes what I took from his book and have continued to leverage to my benefit ever since.

The Secret To Being A Great Leader

GovLoop guest posts

This article is a synopsis to how the ole Country Exec’s mind works. I’m enthralled by leadership psychology, and I believe I have combined the knowledge and experience ascertained over the past quarter century to derive a fairly simplistic approach to being a great leader.

I really don’t find it to be difficult, I think it just boils down to being a good person. That alongside caring about the people you are responsible for professionally. The article details four aspects that when applied, will elevate your status as an organizational leader.

The Value Of Embracing Change

GovLoop guest posts

This was a popular post, I was thrilled to see my article on embracing change get shared around social media. I’m not going to go out on a limb and say it went viral, but I did see it get shared a few times by some surprising folks. I love to see my message of positivity making it out to the world. I’m not going to lie, it’s super cool to see.

As for the write up, it was just my thoughts on being an advocate for change. I have long believed change was inevitable. At some point early on in my career I consciously made the decision that I may as well embrace change because it was going to happen whether I wanted it to or not.

I never could have guessed that simple little shift in personal philosophy would pay such enormous dividends later on in my career. Certainly not to the extent I would begin to write about it in an effort to share its powerful impact. Life, go figure right…?

Perspective Through The Pandemic

GovLoop guest posts

March 2021 marked the one-year anniversary of when the world went sideways because of COVID-19. In my next to last featured contributor article, I wanted to use my platform to share a glass half full perspective on the pandemic and life in general. Focus on the positive as I like to say.

I accept the fact doom and gloom is a necessary evil in today’s relentless media cycle, but I can only take so much. There’s value in the attainment of knowledge certainly, but I felt the negativity was being beaten into me a bit too much by everything around me.

I have long found value in focusing on what really matters in my life. That is the best way for me to reset and get my mind right. This article was my feeble attempt to share that mindset with others. As I always say, if it helped one person in some capacity I’ll take that as a victory.

Cybersecurity In Rural America

GovLoop guest posts

This was my last article as a featured contributor. It’s my bread and butter professionally speaking and another article that has done surprisingly well on social media. I wrote something obvious in the post by stating that “technology is ubiquitous today.” Duh right…?

Having lived on both sides of the fence in my life and career, I believe it gets lost in translation that rural folks have to deal with the same concerns and implications of cybersecurity as others. There’s not a day that passes that I don’t have to deal with cybersecurity in some capacity. Literally every day, to include my days off.

This post was written to raise awareness as to how we are addressing cybersecurity in small town America. Really, we are addressing it just like everyone else. As best we can through the resources that are available to us. I hope any of my fellow tech nerds out there, particularly the ones working outside of the large metro areas, gained some value out of this one.

Bonus – How Utah And A Texas City Are Distributing Vaccines

GovLoop guest posts

I didn’t write this one but on March 18th I was asked and participated in a virtual panel for GovLoop detailing how government entities were leveraging technology to support the pandemic vaccination effort. There’s another one of those speaking engagements, good thing I read that book!

The next day GovLoop posted this review of the open discussion and I wanted to share it here as well. It’s not lost on me that my awesome little city in Texas is side by side on this virtual panel with State of Utah and big tech representatives. That’s how we roll out here in the country folks! If you’ve read much of my writing you know we punch above our weight class around here.

I did enjoy participating on the panel and sharing our experience with distributing vaccinations. On a personal note, I found the national uniformed stance and short order supply chain mechanics to be nothing short of amazing. I like to tell people it’s an honor and a privilege to support my community. It certainly means more than my words can illuminate. This was probably the best example of that I could ever share with someone.

GovLoop Guest Posts Exclusive March 2021 Conclusion

So that’s it for GovLoop Guest Posts Exclusive March 2021, and the three-part series covering my work as a GovLoop featured contributor. It was an awesome experience. Maybe a bit taxing to write twelve articles back-to-back every week on top of my primary responsibilities for the City of Seguin. Not to mention running countryexec.com on the side!

Trust me folks, if I didn’t enjoy it I wouldn’t bother. I truly cannot believe the words flowing out of this country boy from East Texas gets read and resonates with so many people out there. I’m more than happy to share my rural perspective as I continue to find my way in this world. Until next time thank you for reading, and take care of yourself and the ones you love!

The Country Executive