Quotes

He said what?

For those looking for official quotes from Brent's books, speeches, presentations, newspapers, magazines, and other media sources, look no further. To ease your search here is a collection of official quotes you are free to use. Be sure to cite the source given. If no source is given you may cite BrentMesser.com. This is just a small sample of the most influential quotes.


Brent Messer's thoughts...


On Smart Cities
On Innovation
On Broadband
On Leadership

Smart Cities

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“The smartest cities aren’t focused on technology alone, they are about creating more value for their citizens through every means possible.”

~ D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector
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“I hate the term Smart Cities, but I haven’t come up with anything better to displace it, yet.”

~ D. Brent MesserNorth Carolina Local Government Information Systems Association. Fall Summit. Asheville, NC. - 2019

“A city is isn’t smart or dumb. In reality a city is never really complete, only getting smarter over time.”

D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector
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Those communities with the means will of course get smarter quicker than smaller communities but what is considered smart and cutting edge in a larger community may not be needed in a smaller more rural community.

D. Brent MesserLinkedIn - July 2022
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Innovation

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“If you want to innovate, you must be willing to fail.”

~ D. Brent MesserEnterprise IoT Summit. Austin, Tx. - 2017
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“Even in the public sector, failure is an option! If failure is not an option for you then you are doomed to the status quo.”

~ D. Brent MesserGovernment CIO Leadership Conference, Bethesda, MD 2014

“Even those who follow best practices and adapt well to changes, still fail.”

D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector
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“All innovative CIO’s are in sales. They must constantly sell the value of what they are doing to those that hold the purse strings.”

D. Brent MesserCIO Leadership Conference, New York, NY. - 2016
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“The desktop is dead! We now live in a mobile society. There will only be laptops and mobile computing devices in my city.”

D. Brent MesserState Scoop, 2016
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“If you want to best prepare for a global disaster, you must be agile, mobile, and able to quickly adapt to changing conditions. Broadband and IoT play a large role in this.”

D. Brent MesserEnterprise IoT Summit. Austin, TX. - 2017
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“If you want to disrupt the status quo then solve problems most people don’t even know exist yet.”

D. Brent MesserUniversity of Florida, 2003
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Because we [Chattanooga] are a smart city. We’re an innovative city. We don’t wait for other people to go out and try something first. We dive in head first and we try it out.

D. Brent MesserState Scoop, 2017
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Being a futurist is more than just predicting trends. You must see problems most people today don't know exist. To be a great futurist, solve those problems before they become problems.

D. Brent MesserMetropolitan Information Exchange (MIX) San Diego 2021
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Broadband

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“Municipal ISP ownership guarantees that access to the network is equitable and affordable for all."

~ D. Brent MesserPersons of Infrastructure. - 2022
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“Broadband is no longer a privilege for those who can afford it, it is a required staple of modern life. No different than electricity or running water.”

~ D. Brent MesserPublic Sector Network. -2020

"In the 1930s the New Deal brought electricity to the masses in rural areas (TVA and the Chickamauga dam as example). We are in the age of a similar commodity, broadband. It will also take feds and local governments to bring broadband to the masses. I think it is apropos that both began right here in Chattanooga"

D. Brent MesserLinkedIn - 2022
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Leadership

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“Demonstrate your openness and willingness to just be a decent human being who happens to be the one in charge, rather than the boss no one wants.”

~ D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector
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“Just because you have the title doesn’t mean you know everything that’s best. Trust your staff to do their jobs.”

~ D. Brent MesserGovernment CIO Magazine. - 2015
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“If you think you know everything there is to know in your field, you're either delusional or stupid.”

D. Brent MesserEnterprise IoT Summit. Austin, TX. - 2017
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“It’s not rocket surgery. If you think your staff constantly fail you, then it's really you who are failing your staff.”

D. Brent MesserNorth Carolina Local Government Information Systems Association. Fall Summit. Asheville, NC. - 2017
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“The best leaders surround themselves with those who are as smart or smarter then they are.”

D. Brent MesserNorth Carolina Local Government Information Systems Association. Fall Summit. Asheville, NC. - 2019
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“The best leaders know what their weaknesses are and surround themselves with those whose strengths balance their weaknesses.”
D. Brent MesserNorth Carolina Local Government Information Systems Association. Fall Summit. Asheville, NC. - 2019
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“The best leaders know that recognizing they have weaknesses is not a weakness.”
D. Brent MesserNorth Carolina Local Government Information Systems Association. Spring Summit. Willmington, NC. - 2012
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“If you don’t own your failure, you will never see true success.”
D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: The CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector.

The first step to creating any value in your organization as a CIO is to be a good leader.

D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: The CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector.
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In matters of inheriting staff you did not hire, to that, I say, trust them until you can't trust them.

D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: The CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector.
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With regards to your staff: If you want them to follow you into whatever and wherever you need them to trust and respect you, which starts with you trusting and respecting them.

D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: The CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector.
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Always surround yourself with the smartest people you can find.

D. Brent MesserValue-Driven: The CIOs Handbook for Digital Transformation and Innovation in the Public Sector.
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