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Clayton Fields, Woodstock, Georgia Tech Executive, Shares His Approach to New Projects and Innovation

kokou adzo

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Meet Clayton Fields, a Woodstock, Georgia, technology executive whose career has been shaped by a relentless pursuit of excellence and a dedication to empowering clients and supporting colleagues. His technological journey has been motivated by his enthusiasm for the field, where he recognizes its pivotal role in shaping our rapidly evolving world.

He took a few minutes to sit down for an interview with us, where he outlined his passion for problem-solving and commitment to understanding people's needs, which has been the cornerstone of his career, driving him to excel in the tech industry.

Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in your chosen field?

Pursuing a career in technology was primarily driven by the rapidly changing world around me. Technology runs the world and is ever-changing. This fast-paced growth yields a daily life at work that constantly evolves and brings new challenges. The people who solve these modern opportunities create the world around us.

Can you share a defining moment that shaped your career?

When I worked for a Fortune 50 company, my daily tasks included fielding upset customers with problems that needed to be solved and emotions that needed to be heard. I took this challenge directly from the CEO's desk and helped yield satisfied customers. Listening to people tell me stories of failure only to be delighted with satisfaction sealed my interest in pursuing knowledge to empower customers to win.

How would you describe your personal and professional values?

In my personal and professional life, I seek to put people around me first, whether that’s my family, clients, colleagues, prospective customers with challenges to solve, or complete strangers. Anyone in need who is willing to collaborate will get help from me every time.

How do you stay informed about industry trends and emerging technologies?

Staying informed involves finding circles of knowledge to follow and consistently seeking out smarter people to find my own enablement. This involves finding people across a wide variety of platforms and interactions. I also find emerging information via blog posts, articles, editorials, and personal postings of experts in various fields.

What is your approach to starting a new project?

As I start a new project, the most important feature is gathering the facts and data surrounding the engagement to understand the path ahead better. With this knowledge, I can empower the people around me and drive for a solid outcome. Planning for success often equates to success in every project.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career?

The Sandler Sales methodology was bestowed on me at a young age by a Fortune 50 company and set the stage for focusing on customer needs and language. Each opportunity we have usually involves customer language that is unique to that customer. As we recognize similarities, it gives us an opportunity to cross-populate the communication styles that work for those customers, both similar and different. This exchange of information allows people to grow beyond a stalemate and into a partnership in driving outcomes.

What are some of the keys to effective decision-making?

Effective decision-making involves a combination of skills, traits, and processes. Here are some key attributes that contribute to effective decision-making:

Clarity of Purpose

  • Goal Alignment: Decisions should align with the overall goals and objectives of the individual, team, or organization.
  • Understanding the Why: A clear understanding of why a decision must be made helps make informed choices.

Information Gathering and Analysis:

  • Data-driven: Effective decision-makers gather relevant data and rely on evidence rather than making decisions based solely on intuition.
  • Critical Thinking: Analytical skills and critical thinking are crucial for evaluating information and assessing potential outcomes.

Open-mindedness

  • Consideration of Alternatives: Effective decision-makers consider multiple options and are open to alternative perspectives and ideas.
  • Flexibility: Being adaptable and open to adjusting decisions when new information becomes available is important.

Rationality

  • Logical Reasoning: Decision-making involves logical reasoning and sound judgment rather than being driven solely by emotions.
  • Risk Assessment: Evaluating and understanding each option's potential risks and benefits.

Decisiveness

  • Timeliness: Making decisions in a timely manner is crucial. Procrastination can lead to missed opportunities or increased risks.
  • Confidence: Confidence in decision-making is important, but it should be balanced with a willingness to reassess and adjust if necessary.

Communication Skills

  • Clarity: Effectively communicating decisions to others is important for successful implementation.
  • Active Listening: Understanding the perspectives and concerns of others is essential for making well-informed decisions.

Collaboration

  • Team Involvement: Involving relevant stakeholders and considering diverse viewpoints can lead to more well-rounded decisions.
  • Consensus Building: Building consensus when appropriate helps in gaining support for decisions.

Accountability

  • Ownership: Taking responsibility for the outcomes of decisions, whether they are positive or negative.
  • Learning from Mistakes: Embracing a culture of learning from mistakes and using them as opportunities for improvement.

Intuition and Experience

  • Drawing on Experience: Drawing on past experiences and intuition can be valuable, especially when data is limited or ambiguous.
  • Balance with Analysis: Intuition should be balanced with analytical thinking to ensure well-informed decisions.

Ethical Considerations

  • Ethical Awareness: Considering the ethical implications of decisions and ensuring they align with values and principles.

Effective decision-making is often an ongoing process that involves a combination of these attributes. The context, complexity of the decision, and the individuals involved can all influence the decision-making process.

Fields embodies a rare blend of technical expertise and a strong commitment to putting people first. His defining moments, from resolving customer issues at a Fortune 50 company to navigating personal challenges, have sculpted his values and approach to personal and professional realms.

His emphasis on staying informed, embracing challenges, and utilizing methodologies like Sandler Sales has propelled his career and enriched his ability to collaborate and make informed decisions. His insights into effective decision-making offer valuable lessons for aspiring professionals navigating the ever-evolving tech industry.

As Clayton Fields continues to embrace innovation and prioritize human connection, his journey shows the transformative power of technology when combined with a genuine commitment to serving others.

Kokou Adzo is the editor and author of Stri.us. He is passionate about business and tech, and brings you the latest Startup news and information. He graduated from university of Siena (Italy) and Rennes (France) in Communications and Political Science with a Master's Degree. He manages the editorial operations at Stri.us.

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