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Executive Spotlight: Lisa Talcott, VP of Federal Sales at Dataminr

Lisa Talcott

VP, Federal Sales


Executive Spotlight: Lisa Talcott, VP of Federal Sales at Dataminr

Lisa Talcott currently serves as vice president of federal sales at Dataminr, where she oversees federal civilian and Department of Defense key account directors. She collaborates with clients to obtain key renewals, add new agency logos and expand the delivery of the First Alert AI platform alerts through Application Programming Interfaces.

In a recent interview with the Potomac Officers Club, Talcott shared her insights on team building, discussed her leadership values and offered advice for industry newcomers.

Read the full interview below:

How would you describe your management style and core values towards building a winning culture?

Allowing people the space and support to grow is essential. With that said, they need to be set-up for success through job compatibility, training and coaching. Clear objectives and goals empower and motivate, resulting in productivity and job satisfaction. The best outcome is when the individual’s career goals and the company’s objectives overlap to form a successful and long lasting relationship. I encourage teams to share information with each other, not only to inform and educate, but also to build team relationships. When bringing on a new hire, I like to assign them a coworker other than me to work with to help them gain perspective of their new role. While it is encouraged for my directs to involve me in certain discussions for general awareness and direction, it is important to send the message that I have an open door policy for all and am interested in meeting with others inside the organization. Through these discussions, I am also able to gain alternate perspectives that could impact success or allow me to take early action on issues that may arise. 

What are the core values that you believe are essential to building a great team and establishing a foundation to drive success in such a competitive industry?

I firmly believe that we are motivated in part by the work we are performing, but more so by the environment in which we work. Having worked for various leaders with different styles, I have experienced personal growth with those that are receptive, honest and fair. At Dataminr, I am empowered by knowledgeable and supportive leadership. In order to excel in a competitive environment, there must be trust amongst the team to create a one-team philosophy. The work is usually not the biggest challenge in forming a winning solution. More times than not, it can be the human element that blocks our collective ability to be successful. Some behaviors that I seek in my teams are respect for everyone through active listening, consideration of personal events that may take priority and willingness to step up for the greater good. I truly respect those that go above and beyond because it is the right thing to do. 

Leadership comes from the top down, so giving people the power to fail provides a huge opportunity for personal growth and career development while building trust with a customer. As long as these are controlled risks and we leverage them to continuously improve, the ability to be a nimble organization advances innovation and retains talent. As far as staying competitive in the industry with the growing demand for strong resources, it is important to recognize and nurture employees. By practicing flexibility in salary adjustments, an organization can avoid losing talent and corporate knowledge.

How would you advise someone entering our industry to build their resume and advance their careers to be in the best position in the years to come?

The information technology industry continues to evolve at a rapid rate. Regardless of the field of expertise, it remains a competitive environment for college graduates. In order for a job applicant to distinguish themselves, they need to demonstrate strong interpersonal skills, flexibility and an eagerness to assume challenges. There will always be people that can perform the work, but in order to do that, the position has to be offered first. Many times, if a role is between two candidates, the one that presents strong consulting skills will get the position. Staying informed about new technologies, trends and advances in the industry provides someone who is trying to grow with the foresight to obtain new certifications in a timely fashion. Communication is also key to any role, so it is important for technical employees to learn the value of knowing the audience and practice the ability to adjust communication styles as appropriate. 

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