Category Archives: Memphis TN – USA

One week to go

As the summer starts to shine into former cold Memphis – some south-Americans could call it frozen Memphis! brrrr…. – IBM Team starts to develop its final report. After a hard-working week full of interviews, team storming and team performing we have a good and sunny sky over our heads, with the team ready for divide and conquer.

The issue we are trying to solve is rather engaging. Trying to help other people to enhance their possibilities towards a more appropriate health care is not something we usually do on our daily jobs – what is more close to help our clients to be more successful on their objectives and to increase their return. Some of them may also reflect, down the line, in better life quality for normal citizens (I’ve done myself a project on a major Brazilian Oil&Gas company that addressed improvements on their Health, Safety, Security and Environment (HSSE) area!) – but this is different. Although our SCC main product is a recommendation list, all of us know that even our smallest piece of recommendation would make a direct change in improving someone else’s lives, and this is driving our excitement in getting it done, and to make it as easy as possible for the city to roll it out right away.

Moreover, it has been a real pleasure to work along with Memphis Fire Department team, seeing in every contact how much they care for their population and, on the other side, how much the city respect them for that. Engaged stakeholders are critical for any project, and knowing that those guys – along with city’s officials, like Mayor Jim Strickland, CEO Doug McGowen and Innovation Memphis head Justin Entzminger – will hold responsibility to implement it after we leave town is nothing but everything we would want. Mayor Strickland use to say that he is glad MFD Director Gina Sweat didn’t run for mayor cause she is far more popular than he is … and we are delighted to have her on board, as well as Chief Andrew Hart – our main MFD contact – always willing to help us relentlessly. Oh come on… The truth is that we couldn’t find no one stakeholder that is not supportive! And this is amazing, something reeeeeally hard to experience.

So, here we go for our last week. Although it’s non-stopping work (that could easily lasts for another 3 months), there are no clouds in the sky, and we have a beautiful sightseen of what lies ahead.

Top of Pyramid light

Hugo, Aliza, Kathi, Masharn, Keith and Tina on top of Memphis Pyramid


Comments Off on One week to go

Filed under Memphis TN - USA

IBM Team rides along

We are in MEMPHIS only for 1 week, but it seems we’ve landed after Christmas. So much has been done already … even a bunch of snowflakes have dropped on the head of our team representatives … Well, glad to say that since then the temperature has only ramped up, and the non-stopping rain that welcomed us since when we arrived has said farewell few days ago.

Press Conference, working lunches and dinners and more than 15 interviews and meetings with all major stakeholders. Ouch! But wait: our team has also been in the streets, experiencing the real life of brave Memphis Fire Fighters. I’ve been myself along with Kathy with the EMS Navigators, Tim and Dmitria, and … gosh! How much can you learn aside this amazing crew? We’ve visited 6 frequent 911 callers, to understand how MFP could help them increase their life quality, hence reducing their trips to the hospital. Each one with his own concern, from walking challenges, a chronic asthma patient living in a molded flat to a destroyed roof of a wheel chaired man. Polite as the Pope, but firm and steady as a doctor talking to a wild patient, they can lead those in care into a better life. Our best congratulations to them! And of course, also to the other MFD finest who were kind enough to take Steffi, Masharn and Keith on their rides!

IBM Team also stood up for a charity action. We’ve visited Saint Jude Hospital for Children, world wide pioneer in Children’s cancer treatment and research. What a visit! Lindsay, our guide, has been a true patient in the past; her cancer was cured, now she is married and has 2 kids. Listening to her story made team members, some with tears in our eyes, put our problems in perspective. Later on, IBM team served food for hospital patients and their families. Do PLEASE check on their website to have a glimpse of what we’ve experienced:

St Jude

IBM Team and Danny Thomas, St Jude’s Founder

And yeah, among all the meals-working time, meetings and all we were sharp enough to find some time to engage the city – in a beeeeautiful day! I felt like Rio de Janeiro in the winter! :o)


More to come! Oh yeah, much more … This is only Week 1!

See Y’All!!!

Comments Off on IBM Team rides along

Filed under Memphis TN - USA

SCC Memphis Kick-Off!

Last Sunday, Feb 21th, our IBM SCC team landed on Memphis, after a couple of flight delays. Four IBMers from US and one Brazilian landed and started to engage right away: an afternoon meeting truly valuable to get to know each other, our assignment, upcoming agenda and challenges, as well as local attractions in the city that we must see – hence, how to stretch our daily hours as much as possible… :o)


SCC PM Team did a great job to select and unite the following team of IBM experts:

Masharn Austin, Strategy and Talent Leader for Watson Group – based in NYC, USA;

Steffi Diamond, Watson Innovation Director, Software – Littleton, MA

Kathi Hanrahan, Navy ERP Delivery Executive, GBS – Alexandria, VA

Keith Hermiz, Senior Data Cientist, Business Analytics – Essex Junction, Vermont

Hugo Motta (myself!), Executive Project Manager, LA Consulting by Degrees PM – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

We also will have the remote helping hand of Tania Chervinec, our Twitter Expert!

1st day of work has started with a warm reception by the Fire Department folks, and we were able to taste the commitment those guys hold for the project. Friendly at the top, engaged, and willing to help us out as much as possible, we all got really happy to see that the client is fully partnering with us – and this is most critical for any consulting engagement, isn’t it?


Keith, Kathy, Steffi, Tina Wilson (IBM Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs), Hugo (myself!), Masharn, Chief Andrew Hart (Memphis Fire Dep) and Carry (from City’s Innovations office)

Next, a press conference opened by Jim Strickland, Memphis Mayor, for a bit less of a hundred people, presented us and the project to locals … and to the media!


Mayor Strickland is the biggest guy! And the very lefty one is Steve Fittes, IBM Memphis Senior Location Executive

Next… IBM team engages 911 calls – in real ambulances and response vehicules – to experience real life issues that are being faced daily by our client. Hope we’ll be able to update our so far fantastic Memphis experience to y’all!

Comments Off on SCC Memphis Kick-Off!

Filed under Memphis TN - USA