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16 Technical terms and concepts that every business leader needs to understand




Tech leaders are expected to stay up to date on all the latest tech concepts, but in today’s business there are specific tech terms that every leader, regardless of discipline, needs to understand. .. Without a complete foundation of the technical processes and tools needed for modern enterprises to operate, leaders will not be able to make the right strategic decisions and will effectively communicate or be safe with the technical experts they work with. And we cannot completely serve our customers.

From learning how essential technical tools actually work to understanding how to protect assets in an increasingly digital world, expanding technical knowledge helps leaders better at work. Can help you to become. Here, 16 members of the Forbes Technology Council share common technical terms and concepts that many non-technologists misunderstand, what they really mean and why they are important. increase.

Members of the Forbes Technology Council share technical terms and concepts that every business leader needs to understand.

Photos courtesy of individual members.

1. Compliance

One of the business-critical terms that executives often misuse and misunderstand is compliance. Compliance is regularly confused with cybersecurity and does more than just ensure that your organization has the right security policies in place. This includes industry best practices for policies, processes, configurations, and operational procedures. -Husein Sharaf, Cloudforce

2. Multi-factor / 2-factor authentication

A ubiquitous hot button topic that is often misunderstood is multi-factor (or two-factor) authentication. Multi-factor authentication is an algorithm that requires the user to present more than one piece of evidence to verify identification. This level of security is important today in the digital footprint we generate. Multi-factor authentication provides a layer for digital assets. You are not hanging on one password to protect yourself. -Kevin Huber, IT Outlet

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3. Interoperability

Interoperability is important! This means that one computer can easily connect and communicate in real time, on demand, by another computer. Exchanging data between applications, databases, and other computer systems is essential to streamlining and operating modern businesses. -Olga V. Mack, Pearly Pro

4. Smart automation

It is often misunderstood that introducing smart automation means completely eliminating humans from all workflows. However, automation is primarily a tool that frees humans from tedious and repetitive tasks. By definition, smart automation systems include human input. They are designed to go one step further by removing administrative work from people’s plates and flagging the human brain when needed. –Robert Lindner, veda Data Solution (veda)

5. DevOps

Many people misunderstand the term DevOps. It is often considered just a job title, even though it is actually more than that. Think of DevOps as a change in thinking and culture within a company. The main goal is to automate and improve the software delivery process. This term is important for business leaders to understand because it helps make the organization more efficient and agile. –yvind Forsbak, Orient Software Development Corp.

6. Application programming interface

There is confusion about the term application programming interface, more commonly called the API. As software dominates the world and developers build software, APIs are increasingly used by developers to build software and innovative products, features, and experiences more effectively and efficiently. It’s a tool to watch. -Gleb Polyakov, Nylas

7. Open architecture

The concept of open architecture is a simple premise, but non-engineers do not fully understand its importance. Open architecture is essential to the latest technology and is the key to the next generation of digital experiences. By facilitating agnostic relationships between technologies, open architectures empower a wide range of platforms (such as Amazon and Netflix) to optimize the user experience. -Michael Serbinis, League

8. Zero Trust Security

The term zero trust security is often used, but often misunderstood. Simply put, Zero Trust is an important security model that requires organizations to trust nothing inside and outside the network. Instead, to operate with a zero trust model, all access requests need to be fine-tuned, monitored, and tracked across the IT infrastructure. Don’t trust anyone. Always check. –David Canellos, Ericom Software

9. Security and privacy

There is confusion about the difference between security and privacy. Security is the process and technology that protects your data so that it can be calculated in all its phases (pause, in flight, in use). Privacy itself is the result. The concept of retrieving data and using security (both process and technology) to control who can access the data and what it is used for. -Stephanie Dormas, Intel

10. Cyber ​​risks and threats

Cyber ​​risk refers to risk analysis and risk measurement methods for IT and digital systems. This term is often confused with cyber threats. Cyber ​​threats are real problems such as phishing, breaches, and malware. We use cyber risk analysis to understand where we stand and what we must face with respect to risk. Cyber ​​threats are part of those cyber risks. -Claudio Chiefer, DLT Code

11. Technical debt

Non-technical executives often have a hard time understanding the concept of technical debt. Technical debt mainly arises when false product requirements find a way to product development. If the feature is implemented without a meaningful amount of reasoning and a careful review of the technical debt associated with it. Technical debt may not break a bank, but it can literally break a product. –Burc Tanir, Prisync

12. Shared service organization

Shared services organization is a common term that is often confused with centralized services. SSO acts as a business with a defined set of services, serving them to internal or external customers. Centralized services, on the other hand, are an extension of a corporate team for a particular function. The purpose of SSO is to manage and reduce costs and integrate customer visions to meet changing business needs. –Spiros Liolis, Micro Focus

13. Artificial intelligence

Artificial intelligence is a common technical term that has been very misunderstood these days. There are many similar terms such as data science, predictive analytics, and machine learning. Data science, or machine learning, is useful for the data analysis and algorithms that make up an AI system. It is important to understand that today’s data science is used in predictive analytics and recommendation engines. –Swathi Young, Tech Notch Solution

14. Deep learning

The main difference between deep learning and other learning is that it helps deep learning systems discover the proper structure of automated models. In other words, it helps to extract knowledge on its own. These thinking systems do not preclude the role of data scientists. In fact, the exact opposite. For the model to work, you need a highly skilled person to collect everything from the data. –Victor Shilo, East Banc Technologies

15. Agile

Most business people still misunderstand Agile methodologies and sprints as a way for technical teams to deliver results tomorrow. They expect these results without discussion about what the feature they are requesting is for, why it is needed, and how it is used. Simply put, agile is an idea that allows companies to define deliverables and desirable timeframes, work more closely with IT teams, and define completion (that is, how to test functionality). To do). –Buyan Thyagarajan, Eigen X

16. Whatever the latest buzzword

Misunderstandings by non-technical people have a common ground, which is the latest buzzword. The current example is blockchain. It’s a great solution when you’re talking about security. But in many cases, even just talking about a three-page website with a description of baked goods, non-technical people want it. Before jumping into a new trend based on your strengths, review their weaknesses and assess whether they are the best choice for you, not the rest of the world. –Nadya Knysh, a1qa




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