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Hight: Think bigger

August 20, 2008
By Henry Kenyon

Where most leaders would endeavor to view the big picture, Rear Adm. Elizabeth Hight, USN, vice director, Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), sees the biggest picture of all. The issue for communicators is not about serving an activity, or a service, or even a military. Nor is it about winning a war in the kinetic sense. It is about all of the services coming together to attain a national goal.

But, the rub is how an organization can pursue that goal without losing track of its own specific needs.
With all the complexities facing development and acquisition of information systems, Adm. Hight offered no easy solution other than one basic human skill: think. Leaders must weigh risks based on priority of need. "Nothing ever will meet all of your requirements," she told today's plenary session audience.

But, above all, everyone must think in terms of an enterprise instead of a network. This is particularly important as the Army moves into new areas of operation, such as stabilization. No individual service can operate without support from other services, and communicators must keep that foremost in their planning.

"We have to optimize for the enterprise," she declared.

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