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Thought Leadership

What can we learn from a light-hearted quiz?

By Matt Fisher | August 13, 2014


In a light-hearted moment, we recently launched our Star Wars-themed ‘SAM Masters’ quiz, inviting SAM practitioners to ‘discover their destiny’ (you see what we did there?!) and find out which Star Wars character best reflects their attitude to Software Asset Management and license optimization.

It’s all just a bit of fun. But the results actually make for interesting reading. After the first 200-or-so responses, it has become clear that the majority of SAM practitioners are the Princess Leia of the SAM world.

I don’t think it has much to do with whacky hairstyles or flowing white gowns so much as the ability to play the role of the diplomat, to be able to look at a situation rationally and act in the best interests of the organization, rather than letting ego get in the way or try to cut corners.

So far, 56% of respondents have been identified as Leia, compared with just 20% for the next most popular choice, Luke Skywalker (who tends to seek advice and enlightenment over immediate action). Vader (authoritarian, quick to apportion blame) takes third sport while Han Solo (the swashbuckler looking to outwit the system) comes in a distant fourth with just 8%.

What does this tell us about the SAM community? Personally, I think the results are quite interesting.

My take is that it shows that SAM managers generally put the organization’s best interests above personal gain; that rather than point fingers for compliance breaches, they look for ways to prevent future indiscretions; and instead of trying to be the hero, they are happier to work in a team environment where different members bring specialist skills.

I suspect that makes the SAM manager quite an unusual animal – and perhaps this goes some way to explain why good SAM managers are so eagerly sought-after. It is, after all, a rare skill to be able to co-ordinate different resources and technologies to achieve the aim of saving money, rather than spending it! Of course, to realize these goals, the SAM Manager needs access to the right information and the right platform to enable the disparate team-members to work together efficiently.

We might not be able to (yet) offer intergalactic hologram-style team meetings, or even Jedi mind tricks, but Snow’s multi-user, multi-role interface is (in SAM terms, at least) the next best thing.

Giving authorized users custom views of SAM metrics and license intelligence means that different people from across the organization can bring their skills to bear and play an important role in creating an effective SAM discipline. If you haven’t discovered your SAM destiny yet; take our quick five-question quiz and find out which Star Wars character best reflects your approach to managing software assets.

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