How I Succeeded: Kronos’ Deane Hornsby

How I Succeeded is a regular series on Lifehacker where we ask business leaders for the secrets and tactics behind their success. Today: Deane Hornsby from Kronos.

Current gig: Marketing director of Kronos ANZ/SEA
Location: Sydney, Australia
Current mobile device: iPhone 6
Current computer: Dell Latitude E5450 touchscreen
One word that best describes how you work: Enthusiastically

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?

A combination of Marketing Automation & CRM applications and CMS & Social Media platforms that are key to driving our marketing business. Marketing sits between a science and art — we have to be smart. The science if you like, is utilising tools to get real-time data and analytics to understand who to talk about, when, about what and how – as well as target and track, record and report, measure and manage the business. The art is about empowering an audience with compelling content which stimulates engaging conversations and creates a community.

What social network do you find the most useful?

From a B2B marketing perspective I use LinkedIn (Groups/Posts/Updates/Navigator) to connect and converse with peers, prospects and customers. It also allow me to keep my finger constantly on the pulse when it comes to conversations. I can always see what our folks are talking about which helps ensure our content contributes to a conversation.

What were the most important lessons you learned while growing your business?

There are three key things I’ve learned:

  1. Technology provides insights I struggled to see before. The insights gained from technology help me build better collateral for our sales team and provides foresight to create relevant thought leadership content to our customers and prospects. The term “workforce management software” may seem dry to some who are unfamiliar, but when I think about the term, I think people –- the most valuable asset of an organisation — and am able to humanise the information.
  2. I’ve also learned to always think ahead strategically using data/social media to help keep me navigate the next steps to where the strategy should go.
  3. When taking on a challenge, such as moving marketing from traditional to digital, transforming a company to SaaS, or growing a start-up company — it always involves change. Change can be uncomfortable and I’ve learned to empower and inspire people to adapt to and embrace change, to ‘own” change and go the extra mile.

What has been the most surprising part of your business journey?

I’m really surprised when I come across large organisations that are still using paper-based systems. Many people assume big brand organisations are using high-performance technology, but many are still operating on outdated systems, with their people struggling with old processes. It astounds me because technology could bridge the gap so easily, empowering people with fit-for-purpose tools to be more productive and improve profitability.

What everyday thing are you better at than anyone else?

The way I think is both artistic and analytic, which allows me to be creative yet constructive in my approach to work and life. It’s certainly helped me with storytelling and success.

What’s your sleep routine like?

I’ve only ever needed five hours sleep a day. I fall to a deep sleep quickly and awake refreshed. I’m up at the crack of dawn exercising and up late conversing and writing.

What advice would you offer to other businesses on how to succeed?

From a marketing perspective, businesses need to integrate their go-to-market/marketing approach utilising all routes to market, empowering people with compelling content and solutions and starting conversations that resonate with the audience. I think of it like hosting a social event – serving great cocktails and canapés, engaging conversations and exceptional service, which keeps folks coming back and contributing more. All of which needs to be underpinned by smart use of funds and technology, providing real-time intelligence, enabling leaders to make more informed decision, quickly, to sustain success.

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