A critical component in your IT infrastructure breaks. (It NEVER breaks during office hours).
Who gets out of bed to drive in and fix it?
|Photo Credit: Michael O'Connell, Oakville, ON|
It's not me.
The lonely car in the parking lot belongs to the person who got to recommend the equipment.
In my experience I have found that when a component fails (and they all do), there's a bit less frustration for the poor soul getting out of bed if they had a say in the purchase. They can't say "That d**m CIO made me buy junk!" (If you don't think that techs talk this way in the middle of the night, you really need to get out of your office more...)
As a leader, you set the parameters and have the final say, but you should get your team involved in the selection of equipment. After all, they are the ones that are going to be in the trenches fixing it.
If you are new in your role, your team also knows the regional nuances of service and support. Product X might have great service in the market you came from, but has one tech service rep for an area bigger than Texas in your new job. (Note: this is based on my experience in Northern Ontario).
So instead of letting your purchasing decisions be influenced by the trade show swag, the complimentary golf games, or even you own biases, get an opinion from your team... unless you want to be the 3am guy.
Who gets to influence the purchasing decisions on your team? (I'm sure there are thousands of sales reps anxious to hear the answer.)