Crain’s 2022 Notable Executives in Know-how Q&A: ‘Tech allows a enterprise, supports people’

Howard Pincham figured out a leadership lesson years ago when he worked at Hyland Application. In the open workplace ecosystem, Pincham viewed as then-CEO A.J. Hyland took the final glass of water from a cooler, then changed the empty jug with a complete 1. “I was struck by this person, the CEO of a large business, transforming the water for every person else,” Pincham stated. Pincham attempts to convey that technique to his do the job as main details officer at Koinonia Homes, a nonprofit that presents residing spaces and encounters for those people with mental and developmental disabilities.

What IT issues have you had to handle at Koinonia?

I commenced in the tumble of 2019, and when COVID hit, we experienced two months to change from a place where by all the operate took place to a single in which some operate could conveniently transpire elsewhere. A lot of us have the very same tales, but it took us a very little much more work, since we were being driving in conditions of know-how. We have also tried to aid the persons in the front line report info back about clientele with some quite hard disabilities. How very well an individual had lunch that day or how a person else is developing self-care habits. Our business enterprise is about care, and we need to have to doc that care. A lot of what we’ve carried out is par for the course, but this is a route to maturity for us.

Your mindset seems “other”-pushed. Is that truthful?

I imagine of myself as aspect of the group, and I need to maintain up my conclusion. If I’m the government and men and women have to dazzle me, primarily ahead of they dazzle close buyers, their productivity goes out the window. If I can make this office drama-absolutely free, I truly feel like I’m serving them mainly because the staff — and it is an exceptional team — is contributing for stop buyers.

How do you mesh servant leadership with IT?

I am a typical man, but I’m also most likely the biggest nerd you know. A person of the problems that nerds like us have is we feel tech is the be-all and stop-all. I see 3 legs that are vital: people today, method and tech. For somebody in my house to say tech solves all the troubles, unquestionably not. Tech enables a organization, supports people, supports process.

Are you capable to interact with customers?

We have additional than 60 places spreading by means of Cuyahoga County and Summit and a little bit of Lorain, so there are a lot of prospects for all of us to have interaction. It really is incredible that we are termed just to offer a home for our shoppers. When I present up, I don’t have the ability established to provide the care that some of them need, but I can chat and devote time and be present — and hopefully that allows an individual. Observing the function that the overall workforce does to give the tiniest issue for an individual on the autism spectrum or somebody who is nonverbal but so considerably would like to be part of the local community, viewing the mission and seeing what front line folks do, it’s been a blessing and a privilege.