Trust: It’s not complicated, just ask my dogs
When I need a break from my busy life, I enjoy long walks with my two English bulldogs. My dogs enjoy them too. Lots of things to sniff, squirrels to chase and not a care in the world as to where we’re going or whether we’ll get home in time for dinner. They know that’s my job and they trust me to take care of them.
Business relationships are more complex than a leisurely walk with a pet, but we can still learn a lot from our dogs. Business guru Stephen Covey once said: “Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.” I’m proud to say that my dogs are as smart as Stephen Covey. Covey’s notion of a “foundational principle” in life explains the strength of the bond between my dogs and me, as well as Lumen and our customers.
A customer’s trust in a provider shouldn’t be conditional or contingent on quarterly financial goals and shifts in strategic plans. It’s this foundational principle we invoke when we say that Lumen is your “trusted advisor.”
Customer trust must be earned. And then earned again. Everyday. That’s how we operate at Lumen.
And to earn that trust every day, you need to be there right beside customers even when things go wrong. At a recent InspireCIO event, Jessica Hill, one of Lumen’s leaders, spoke about her experience supporting Dewberry, a civil engineering firm that’s been a customer for more than a decade.
I appreciate Jessica’s candor in pointing out that trust comes into play even when there are issues to work out. No one can promise perfection. But, we can practice discipline, vigilance and open communication with our customers. These characteristics animate Covey’s foundational principle on a daily basis.
I’m gratified that our customers and partners trust us enough to thank us publicly.
Our partner NetApp recently awarded us “Service Provider of the Year” for “globally deployed services that are easy to use and offer creative solutions.” When Gartner announced Lumen’s “Magic Quadrant” award earlier this year, it was based on reports from our customers. The criteria included the ability to execute and the completeness of our vision as a network provider.
And just a few days ago, Lumen earned the “Cybersecurity Breakthrough Award: Network Security Provider of the Year” from Cybersecurity Breakthrough, part of the market intelligence firm Tech Breakthrough. This award specifically recognizes two aspects of the Lumen platform of adaptive networking, edge cloud, connected security and collaboration services. We integrated our technologies into a single platform because customers today need holistic solutions.
A platform of trust
The elements of the platform work together, but it’s fair to say that our roots as a company are in the network. Our network is secure by design. Lumen carries a large portion of global Internet traffic and that responsibility requires that we constantly invest in securing the network at foundational levels. Everyone gets the benefit of those investments. Those investments include Black Lotus Labs, our threat intelligence operation that can identify exploits circulating on the internet and trigger countermeasures to protect our customers before they see any impact. We then layer security services on top of that network to tailor a complete solution to a given customer’s situation.
For many customers we are moving security into our edge cloud capability to enable new security concepts such as Secure Access Services Edge (SASE) or Zero Trust Architecture. And all these security efforts are part of what makes the increase in collaboration services work. You can’t collaborate well if you can’t trust the connections.
Through our integrated platform and the people behind it, we earn our customer’s trust. Then we earn it again the next day. A foundational principle is a way of life. You draw on it everyday without having to think about it.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go feed the dogs. In the meantime, check out our adaptive networking solutions to understand more about how they are secure by design. You can trust Lumen with your data and applications.
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