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We hope that these examples will jog a few ideas loose for you on how to present a compelling funding request to executive management. By establishing "hard" and substantiated probabilities, backed by individuals whom management trusts, it may not even be necessary that management understand precisely the technical capability of the equipment you propose! It's more important that they clearly understand the business risk your proposed solution alleviates, so that they can make informed decisions. The comfort level you establish with management in this regard translates directly into approval of purchases, project funding, and general support.

If you follow the rules in this series, we are confident that you will convince your management that you too can be a master chef, and that they can safely swallow anything you cook up in the way of disaster recovery. Best of luck in your pursuits!

Leo A. Wrobel has more than 30 years of experience with a host of firms engaged in banking, manufacturing, telecommunications services, and government. An active author and technical futurist, he has published 10 books and more than 400 trade articles on a wide variety of technical subjects. Leo served 10 years as an elected mayor and city councilman (but says he is better now). A sought-after speaker, he has lectured throughout the United States and overseas and has appeared on several television news programs. Leo is presently CEO of Dallas-based TelLAWCom Labs Inc. and b4Ci, Inc. Contact Leo at 214-888-1300 or email leo@b4ci.com.

Sharon M. (Ford) Wrobel served as corporate secretary and director of personnel for Premiere Network Services Inc. prior to joining b4Ci, Inc. in 2004. During that time, Sharon was instrumental in getting Premiere certified as the first CLEC to be certified in all 50 states, by aiding in filings and attending hearings. She also engaged in extensive research for Premiere, a function she continues with b4Ci as vice president of business development. Sharon was also president of the Ellis County Early Childhood PTA and the Ovilla Lions Club. She attended the University of Maryland and El Centro College in Dallas and received training as a registered nurse before joining Leo in business in the late 1990s. Sharon also served as a public official by accepting appointments to the local Planning and Zoning Commission and the Historical Commission.

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