Tech Solutions Champion: Ola Sage of e-Management [Podcast]
There’s a reason why Ola Sage, founder and CEO of e-Management, an IT solutions firm based in Silver Spring, MD, is willing to play the cat-and-mouse game with computer hackers who target her clients.
“We exist to help people succeed and we happen to be in the IT services field,” said Ola, who founded e-Management in 1999. “It is the people who we are supporting, who really have ambitions and goals that they want to accomplish, that drives our passion for what we do.” Ola said she was inspired by her West African entrepreneurial parents to eventually start her own business venture. She started e-Management, a firm that maximized her educational and professional background in computer information systems. “After having my company go through the worst economic recession, I found that the hardest thing to do is to maintain and grow a company,” said Ola. “I started the business right before the dot-com bust, so I found myself right in the middle of running this when the rug was pulled from underneath.” But that wasn’t enough to stop Ola from keeping her company going. That’s because she abides by what she calls a triangle of responsibilities as a CEO, which include: growing the company, growing your people and managing company risk “This triangle was such a useful tool for me to navigate difficult decisions, issues, challenges and opportunities,” she said. “There’s a lot of companies out there that can’t even pass the five-year mark of being in business, but we just celebrated our 16th year in business.” Today e-Management has grown to have a five-person leadership team with dozens of employees and accolades. “For CEOs who do not have a technical background, [cyber security] can be really overwhelming,” she said. “I always explain to my clients that cyber security issues are not necessarily a technology problem, but rather a risk management problem.” Vistage has also provided an invaluable resource for Ola. “Being a Vistage CEO has given me the tools and resources needed to become a better leader as my fellow Vistage CEOs and coaches are there to take the journey with us,” she added. To learn more about e-Management click here.