What’s Up At The Garden

CIMG0871.JPGApproximately 45 days ago I accepted an offer from IBM to become a Cloud Advisor. Many people have asked me why would I do this with my consultancy taking off? As a sole practitioner it’s easy to be pigeon-holed into doing the same kind of engagement over and over. IBM software and SaaS products have been a big part of some of the most interesting solutions I’ve designed.  So when the opportunity to become an advocate, evangelist and total fan girl for both cloud computing and the most current business technologies (cognitive, analytics, IoT, DevOps to name a few) that leverage the cloud came along, I jumped.  There are very few times in your life when the opportunity comes along to be paid for doing stuff that you get deep satisfaction from with people you really like for a company with a proud history and great future. (Plus, I work from home.)

So, what’s going to happen to the Garden of The Intellect? Going forward this is where I’ll be writing about non-technology interests and also any technology topics that don’t have a home in other venues. Those other interests include gardens, food, dogs, fancy cocktails, books, and general observations.

Garden of The Intellect Celebrates First Anniversary!

Very happy to celebrate the first anniversary of Garden of the Intellect. It’s a big step to go out on your own and so many people have given encouragement and advice that if I thanked you all by name it would seem like one of those endless Academy Award speeches. Thank you to my customers; working with you to achieve your goals is a joy, your trust and collaboration is a source of inspiration. Thank you to my friends; without your tough love and fellowship none of this would be possible. Thank you to my business connections for your generosity with information and mentoring – you are another source of inspiration and energy. And thanks to everyone who has referred work to me. The positive word of mouth is more valuable than you know. I am honored by your confidence and always appreciative.

The gray cloud for SaaS: Shadow IT

It’s so easy to try out SaaS applications how can you blame your lines of business for trying out and buying the tools that they think (hope?) will get their jobs done better. I spent a few minutes in January talking with IBM’s  Erik Anderson for his video blog series. These 90 seconds are only the first steps in engaging your organization and creating a partnership where IT and the LOBs are in step.


Garden of The Intellect, LLC & Venatures, LTD Enter Strategic Alliance

Cincinnati, Ohio, September 29, 2014 — Garden of The Intellect LLC has entered into a strategic alliance with New York City based advisory board/business strategy firm Venatures LTD. Through this alliance clients of both consultancies will have access to proven technical and business development expertise in support of start-ups, M&A and business reorganization.

Venatures LTD. provides the following services and expertise:

  • Venture Capital Advisor
  • Retained “On Call” CEO/COO
  • Entrepreneurship Mentoring
  • Business Development/Startup Strategist

Garden of The Intellect provides:

  • IT Operations & Organization Review/Roadmap
  • M&A due diligence
  • Retained “On Call” CIO & Interim Executive Management
  • IT/Business Strategy Alignment
  • Cloud/SaaS Guidance

This alliance is the start of a cooperative of boutique consultancies and solo experts that will provide expertise in both consulting and information to support entrepreneurial research and training. Businesses interested in participating in the alliance should contact: info@gardenoftheintellect.com or jackie.nicole@icomtrader.com

About the principals

James A. Vena, founder of Venatures, is a successful international business creator and global development strategist. He is also the creator of iComTrader International Group, the Satcorp International Group of Companies and Thoroughlybred Holdings. Since the inception of his first business in 1986, James’ companies have created nearly USD Billion in sales. Venatures global network of resources extends across 30 countries.

James Vena Bio

James on LinkedIn

Karolyn Schalk, established Garden of The Intellect in April 2014 after a 30 year career that spanned both custom market research and system development during the dot.com boom. Throughout her career she has recognized the need to align technology with people and process for business success. As a business technology architect and IT executive focused on mission critical, high availability systems Karolyn enabled large, multinational companies to leverage information assets to the fullest. An expert on all things cloud she has led the design of process and infrastructure to support global business and collaboration for hundreds of thousands of users and billions of transactions a minute.

Karolyn Schalk Bio