This episode of CXOTalk explores business transformation from the perspective of Seagate's Chief Information Officer, Ravi Naik. He has a unique perspective on cloud technology because he is also Executive Vice President of the company's multicloud product offering.

The conversation includes these topics:

In his role as CIO, Ravi Naik is leading large transformative initiatives, leveraging ideas and platforms focused on future growth. With his passion for technology, as EVP of Lyve Cloud, he is pioneering the next chapter of innovation and leadership in Seagate storage services.

Prior to joining Seagate in 2017, Ravi was the senior vice president of technology at Katerra, a startup revolutionising the construction industry by transforming the way buildings and spaces come to life. Before Katerra, in 2007 Ravi joined SanDisk to lead an enterprise-wide transformation initiative. Following the success of SanDisk transformation, he was appointed CIO, remaining with the organisation through its sale to Western Digital in 2016. Before that, he held leadership positions in Mercury Interactive, Hewlett Packard, and 3Com Corporation. Naik holds a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Bombay in India.

Transcript

Ravi Naik: All CIOs have a high degree of paranoia and a high degree of optimism. That's really what is engrained as a CIO in me. I call that trait of CIOs to be that of a paranoid optimist.

On the CIO and IT strategy at Seagate

Michael Krigsman: That's Ravi Naik, Chief Information Officer and Executive Vice President of Lyve Cloud at Seagate.

Ravi Naik: I joined Seagate about five years ago, and I came to Seagate as a chief information officer with a primary goal of transforming Seagate IT. Now, we use the word transformation very loosely in our industry, but there was a very clear objective.

Seagate, at that time, was essentially running its operations across the globe and IT was a very federated organization. Each factory had its own IT organization. There were distributed architectures. There were teams that were duplicative.

The goal was to really bring about a seamless transformation in order to really improve the efficiency of the organization, of the IT organization. But more importantly, to provide value to the business in terms of bringing about process efficiency, tool efficiencies, architecture efficiencies and, through the process, streamlining the IT spend for this company.

I started in that role five years ago. We did some major initiatives. We did some very heavy lifting in about 18 months' time.

Changed the direction of the ship and, through the process, came a strategic initiative to build up our own services platform, to build up a cloud offering, which was a strategy that the senior leadership adopted. I was asked to help really run with that strategy and execute on it.

That's really how the two roles, the dual roles came about. One is the CIO role and the other is the executive vice president of storage services. In that role, I'm responsible for the entire services business for Seagate.

What is multi-cloud?

Michael Krigsman: You're very involved with multicloud, so why don't you tell us about that?

Ravi Naik: The ability to adopt the different cloud solutions across various clouds is really what multicloud is about. Today, we don't really live in a multicloud world. We use the term multicloud very loosely.

We live in a world of multiple clouds. There are multiple clouds that operate independently, and they do not talk to each other.

The workloads do not move seamlessly from one cloud to the other or from on-prem to the cloud or cloud to on-prem. That's the reason I say we live in a world of multiple clouds.

A true multicloud experience is where customers and practitioners (like CIOs) have the ability to move workloads seamlessly no matter where the technology or the application footprint is.

Michael Krigsman: Why has this term multicloud become so important?

Ravi Naik: The way the cloud has been architected, it has been designed to bring workloads and customers in. But it has made it incredibly difficult for workloads to migrate off.

Think about a situation where you are leveraging one platform today because it provides the best-in-class solution for machine learning. Six months down the line, a year down the line, there is a completely different platform where a different provider who has brought in a new, innovative solution, which you want to take advantage of.

Now, you can't take advantage of that in today's cloud environment. It's because of incredibly challenging models and frameworks that have been put in place to trap customers in, to lock customers in.

It is the trick that the cloud has really perfected, which is to bring customers and workloads in and then lock the workloads down so they cannot leave. They cannot take advantage of the innovation or new tools or solutions that are coming out from different platform providers. That's the reason multicloud is becoming important.

Multicloud is about really bringing that freedom. How do you ensure that you can make that switch and make the switch in a very seamless manner without disrupting the business, without disrupting what you have built over time? That's where multicloud becomes a very key element of our conversation.

To make it a little bit more practical, what I'd like to say is storage is an incredibly great example of that. When you put data in a storage platform, it is the data movement which is really where the friction is. If you're able to pull the data out and put it in an independent (what I call) storage plane, then you can very easily start leveraging all of these different tools that are available in the various clouds and service providers.

Michael Krigsman: You were just describing multicloud as the antidote to cloud vendor lock-in.

Ravi Naik: It is an antidote to cloud vendor lock-in, but it is also a very powerful mechanism for customers to start owning their data.

Today, the customers do not own their data because they have to pay for every transaction on their data. They pay for storage. They pay for egress. They pay for API. They pay for deletion. And this is your own data, so you pay for the same data over and over again.

Michael Krigsman: The products that you're building (and other multicloud vendors are building) do what? What do you enable?

Ravi Naik: What we do with Seagate's Lyve Cloud S3 compliance storage service is provide the storage backplane for customers. What do I mean by storage backplane?

Storage backplane is essentially a solution or a platform where customers can store their data without any fear of lock-in. You can bring in your data. You can take off your data. You can migrate your data on and off-prem without having to worry about paying these additional fees.

You pay for storage in a way where it was originally meant to be. Look, the idea of the public cloud was to simplify architectures, lower the invoices and the bills for customers, and accelerate business and innovation.

In reality, what has happened is the opposite. Architectures have become very focused on locking customer data in, bringing about friction for workload movement, and thus it has slowed down innovation.

Really, what we offer is the ability for customers to store data and pay for what you store and nothing else. There are no extras.

When you do that, you have that platform available where you keep your data. Now, you can use a slew of different products from various cloud vendors and service providers on that data.

At any point in time, if you want to let go of that data, you want it to be packaged and sent to you, we put it on a shuttle. We have our data shuttles, which are available where we store this data and we move it physically to your data center, so you can ingest it into your on-prem location.

Why is multicloud important to enterprise cloud adoption?

Michael Krigsman: Vamsi Paladugu (who I think is probably on your team) from Seagate, he raises a really good point. "Why is this seamless experience so unusual today?"

Ravi Naik: It's really about monetization. "When you look at monetization of customers' data, where do you draw the line?" is the question I ask myself and my fellow CIOs.

Yes, we are all in the business of building new technology, providing solutions, and monetizing that. But think about this from a point of view of buying a car.

You buy a car. You pay for it. You get into it. Now you have to pay to unlock the steering wheel. You are to pay for it for every mile that you're driving. Most importantly, you have to pay every time you want to unbuckle your seatbelt and open the door to get out.

That's essentially what we are talking about. That is not the experience that is going to help promote innovation and adoption and business growth.

It's super important for customers to have the ability to bring workloads onto a cloud platform and to not think about what it would mean a year, two years, or three years down the line in terms of cost models for us. Do I get trapped and locked in, or do I have the ability to take advantage of the solutions and services and innovation that is coming out in the ecosystem?

On cloud vendor lock-in in the public cloud

Michael Krigsman: Please subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the subscribe button at the top of our website so we can send you our newsletter and notify you of live shows.

What are the challenges for a CIO who is facing this kind of lock-in and facing the cost implications you were just describing, and they're sick of it? They say, "I've had enough." What are the challenges of alleviating that?

Ravi Naik: When we started our business transformation five years ago, which I mentioned earlier where there was a significant challenge in terms of harmonizing our architectures and rationalizing our cost model, we did a significant migration to the public cloud with the goal of really taking advantage of these latest tools, solutions, technologies, and helping our business in terms of building new analytics products and tools. One of the workloads was our 2.5-petabyte workload, which is a machine learning platform that we migrated to the public cloud, and it was a great experience for us.

The first year, we did great in terms of not only building the product and the platform for our internal business users, but it also helped us rationalize our costs quite a bit.

What we realized was the cost rationalization did not come from the adoption or the migration to the cloud but it actually came from the discipline that the cloud forces or imposes on you. That realization was something that came to us in about 12 months' time when we started seeing an increase in our costs.

It was very natural for our costs to start going up because we loved the platforms and we wanted more data to be stored. As our data volumes continued to increase, so did our cost.

We realized that our costs had doubled in 18 months' time as compared to how much we used to spend on-prem. Then in another six months' time, they doubled again. That's when we realized this is not a workable model for the long term because data will keep growing. And as data grows, if our costs keep growing exponentially, we are going to have a challenge in terms of really utilizing the intelligence or extracting the intelligence from all of this data that we are storing.

That's when we said we want to repatriate this workload. The repatriation, instead of coming back to a legacy architecture on-prem, we decided that we are going to build our own cloud infrastructure.

Given the fact that Seagate is a leader in mass capacity storage, it just made sense for us to build our own cloud for ourselves, and that's what we did. We migrated our 2.5-petabyte workload from the public cloud to our platform.

When I started talking about this to my friends in Silicon Valley, to my peers, what I came to realize is this is not a unique problem. This is a challenge that all the CIOs face today in the technology industry (and the nontechnology industry) because really what is happening is all businesses are becoming technology businesses and AI, ML, and analytics is really one of the key drivers for businesses to extract value.

Everyone is experiencing the same issue, so they started knocking on the door and said, "Hey, let's see if we can maybe take advantage of this platform that you've built," and that's really how we started Lyve Cloud.

Michael Krigsman: You started Lyve Cloud out of your own experience and your own observation of your costs just growing and growing and growing in an uncontrolled way. You figured you had to do something about it.

Ravi Naik: Yes. I will add, though, that we still run a number of our workloads in the public cloud. There are certain workloads where it makes sense to take advantage of what is existing in the world.

It is when it comes to mass capacity storage, workloads that require significant amounts of storage, that's where the current structure of the public cloud breaks down. What we mean by mass capacity is anyone who has north of a petabyte of data to store, starting from a petabyte to 10 to 100 petabytes.

Now think about it. Storing 100 petabytes of data on the public cloud at the cost models that are out there is exorbitant and could, in many cases, become detrimental for a business to grow.

Michael Krigsman: We have a really interesting question from Twitter. This is from Arsalan Khan, who is a regular listener and asks such great questions. He says, "Standardization is important when data is shared and transported between cloud vendors and on-prem. How did you convince leadership that this needed to be done?"

Ravi Naik: It's a process and a journey, is what I would say. The approach we took was we looked at the world's largest storage standard which customers or companies have adopted, and that is the S3 standard.

When you look at object storage service, S3 is the de facto standard. Now, of course, there is Microsoft Azure Blob. There is the GCP platform. But the S3 standard is something we decided to adopt, and that's really what Lyve Cloud has really picked up as a standard.

What we say is we are an S3-compliant object storage as a service. But also, there is a need for us to have translation services. Whether you run your workload on Azure of GCP, you should still be able to access your data irrespective of which platform that data is stored in.

On managing the dual roles of CIO and EVP of cloud services

Michael Krigsman: I think it's very fascinating that you built this service out of your own need because you were the CIO. And as CIO, you are in this unique position where you've got this dual role of being the chief information officer of this very large organization and, at the same time, being the executive vice president of this product. How do you manage that? Can you talk with us about that? These are such very different skill sets and objectives. How do you do this?

Ravi Naik: I've been a CIO for over 17 years (of various companies), and I'd say that the CIO job is something that I love doing. It's about really keeping a business running, making it more efficient, bringing about architectures that can not only provide support and service to a business for the near term, but these are solutions that have to last for a long period of time.

It's a role where you have to essentially make sure that you stitch a fabric together and the fabric stays in place for a long period of time.

I call that trait of CIOs to be that of a paranoid optimist. All CIOs have a high degree of paranoia and a high degree of optimism. That's really what is engrained as a CIO in me.

Now switching hats and becoming a business leader is a very different skill and a very different muscle. That's been something which has been incredibly enlightening to me. It's been a learning process over the last three years where you have to be hyper-optimistic while you're also driving your organization to really innovate, to break things, to take risks on a daily basis.

A CIO's role is to be a little paranoid to mitigate risks. But as a business leader, you're forcing yourself and your organization and your team to push the boundaries, to take risks.

This dichotomy of skills is an interesting experience for me because there is one skill that comes very naturally over the years and, to a great extent, I have to unlearn some of that. I have to unlearn and relearn and build new skills.

While there has been that experience for me to really build these new capabilities, there's also an advantage. Being a practitioner and a user of technology for a very long time, and I know what customers want and what they're looking for, the pain points that they experience, and bringing that world view into the role as a business leader, as someone who is building a product, building a service is incredibly important where the customer first mindset is always something that we want to think about.

What is it that a customer wants? What is it that enables a customer? It is not really the technology. It is really a service. What we provide is a service.

This has been a great learning for me. Really bringing the CIO role and the business role together has been a game changer not only for me but for a lot of my peers who I talk to when they learn from this.

How can CIOs overcome challenges to being business leaders?

Michael Krigsman: The common wisdom today for CIOs is that they should be more focused on being business leaders rather than technology leaders. In your case, you've kind of pushed that boundary very, very far because you're actually running a business. What are the challenges that a CIO may face as they try to develop those business leadership skills and also as they try to get their own organization to accept them as business leaders rather than as technologists alone?

Ravi Naik: The biggest learning that I have is not about the technology. It's about the people.

We are in the people business, and it is incredibly important to keep in mind that it is talent, skills, and organization construct which are the key differentiators between successful businesses and businesses that are not able to scale and grow.

There are different kinds of skills and capabilities required at different stages of a business. Having the ability to understand that, to sense that, and make the right changes is super important for organizations to grow and scale.

On the IT side of the house, what happens is we essentially are working on building a fabric, as I mentioned earlier. It is important to keep the lights on, keep the business running, not be disruptive, take minimal risks.

I call IT the oxygen in a room. No one ever thanks the oxygen in the room. You breathe in. You breathe out. You expect it to always be there.

It's only when you enter a room and there is no oxygen do you realize the value of what that oxygen was. That's how IT is. It's supposed to be there always and working.

You don't expect to be thanked for it, so you take a very different mindset. It is about having that paranoid optimistic mindset.

But when it comes to building a business, growing a skill, it's a completely different muscle. It is building the product, pushing the boundaries, engaging with customers. I've never done that.

I have such great respect for salespeople now. I've always been a buyer of technology, a practitioner, and someone who people are trying to reach out to and sell to.

I switched roles. I am now selling, and I realize what a tough job selling is. So, I have this newfound respect for salespeople and for marketing people. Learning their skills, learning all of these different functions has been super important.

Yes, technology is a key aspect, but it is about the support, it's about the service, about the sales, about the GTM. It is the 360-degree view of the business that I now have has been incredibly powerful for me.

On customer experience and the Chief Information Officer

Michael Krigsman: You mentioned the term customer experience. What can CIOs learn from this lesson of customer experience that they can apply in their own work?

Ravi Naik: There is a very good continuum between the CIO role and the role that I play as a business leader. It is important to keep in mind that CIOs have customers. They are internal customers.

Of course, the dynamic is very different. It is not a revenue generation arm of the company. But you still have to fulfill and satisfy the needs of your customers.

When it comes to an organization like Seagate, we are vertically integrated. We are a high-tech manufacturing company. It's a massive footprint around the world. Huge throughput. We have logistics. We have supply chain. We have incredibly complex financials.

Really, making sure that we stitch all of this together and are able to really drive efficiency and making sure that the business operates incredibly well is all about customer experience. Ensuring that your analytics reports, your manufacturing reports, your quality reports are all harmonized, that you are getting a single source of truth, the various business groups and users all see the world the same way, that's really what customer experience is.

When I take that out to the business world, it is really about how do you enable customers. It is the wow factor.

Yes, your customer expected a storage platform to be available at a lower price. But what is it that they don't get?

Or the other way to put it is what is it that they never expected that they are going to start getting? For example, in our case, yes, storage is what we are offering on the public cloud. We offer Lyve Cloud, which is a storage platform. But along with that, we offer a whole slew of services integrated to the customer.

There's a professional services arm that is integrated into the offering. We have Lyve Mobile, which is our data movement platform. We have Lyve Migration Services for customers who have large volumes of tapes that they want to digitize and store the data onto the public cloud.

When customers first start talking to us, they never expect us to be able to provide the slew of services, this broad range, this broad spectrum of capabilities. We come to them and say, "Look. You pay for storage and nothing else. Everything else is included."

Data movement, data storage, encryption, all of the capabilities that you need in terms of replication, in terms of immutability of data, it's all built into the platform. That's really what the customer experience is.

How do you bring about (on a daily basis) the capabilities that the customer would love to have but were not expecting to get from you? Pushing the boundaries every day is really what drives me and the team.

Michael Krigsman: We have another question from Arsalan Khan who says, "When it comes to innovation, how much time should non-technology leaders be spending?" Also, as an extension to that, I'll add, what is the relationship between the CIO (as a businessperson, as a technologist) and the other business leaders inside the organization?

Ravi Naik: We live in a world where technology is a lever. It is a tool for individuals, organizations, companies to really bring about what we were talking about earlier – great customer experience.

One doesn't have to be a technologist to be a business leader. One doesn't have to be a technologist to be an innovator.

In fact, if you look around us, there are loads of startups where the founders and CEOs do not have a technology background. They come from various backgrounds whether it be from the government sector, whether it be from healthcare, whether it be from finance.

That's really what it is about. It is having an idea of solving a problem.

Innovation is a mindset. Innovation is not really tied to technology. If you have the right mindset, you have the ability to take the right risks.

It's about innovation. It's about risk-taking. It's about pushing the boundaries. That's really what drives the world in terms of innovation in today's ecosystem.

How can cloud providers improve customer experience?

Michael Krigsman: We have another question from Twitter. This is from Wayne Anderson. He's another regular listener of CXOTalk who asks wonderful questions. Wayne Anderson says, "When a customer is heavily invested in a top three cloud provider, where do you see are the biggest opportunities to help them improve that customer experience and create value that the cloud environment in and of itself the cloud providers could not offer?"

Ravi Naik: We are complementary to the big three. We offer our services as a complementary platform to what the hyperscalers offer. That's the reason you'll keep hearing from me that we are a storage backplane.

What is a storage backplane mean? It means you store all your data in an environment that is democratic, that is free, that is frictionless, has no constraints in terms of data movement or additional costs.

That allows you to now start leveraging all the different solutions that the different CSPs, hyperscalers, and on-prem platforms provide you. That's the true multicloud ecosystem where you have data sitting in a backplane and you're able to leverage the application footprints and the innovations, whether it be in CSP A's or CSP B's environment.

Now, the innovation that comes out from that is it allows customers to really think broader, to think more horizontally in terms of how they want to structure and architect their businesses. They don't have to be locked into a single platform. They don't have to be locked into a single vendor. That's the freedom that we bring about.

Of course, there is the whole TCO model benefit. There's a dramatic TCO benefit given the fact that we are the world storage manufacturers and we provide storage to 50% of the world.

We bring in storage at a price point which is incredibly attractive to customers. The value is in terms of really mass capacity storage.

If you look at data analytics, 80% of big data analytics workloads today still sit on-prem. They sit on-prem because of the high cost to storage in the public cloud.

The way I look at that is we offer an opportunity for customers to migrate those workloads from their data centers to a new cloud-based architecture which brings them closer to the CSPs. Now, we are able to keep the data in Lyve Cloud and be able to leverage whether it be Azure or AWS or GCP's analytics platforms to access this data.

How do multicloud environments create business value?

Michael Krigsman: Okay. We have a related question from Lisbeth Shaw who says, "Multicloud is very much infrastructure. Does multicloud have a role in creating business value? What kind of non-technology business value does multicloud enable?"

Ravi Naik: Multicloud is more than just a concept. Multicloud is about bringing freedom to customers. When you bring freedom of data movement and workload migration, it by itself is going to really spawn a whole bunch of different use cases and capabilities that customers are going to need, whether it be technology use cases or professional services use cases, architecting your future applications to leverage the different capabilities across multiple CSPs and stitching a solution together.

Yes, there will be a number of opportunities for technology and nontechnology organizations to really look at multicloud in a way that it will build new solutions and product offerings in the industry.

How can CIOs be effective driving digital transformation?

Michael Krigsman: What advice do you have for CIOs who want to play an active role in digital transformation or business transformation? When I think about your story of being the CIO and then developing this product offering, to me that defines transformation. What advice do you have for CIOs who are looking at this?

Ravi Naik: The bias towards action is key. I have always been a person who believes in action because only through action do you realize whether your theories and ideas are going to get the benefit that they promise to.

What I would say is that I have a very strong bias for action. I also have an appetite for risk. It is important that action and risk go hand-in-hand.

It is super important because only when you keep pushing the boundaries, you keep pushing the envelope do you break things. It's through this breaking of things on a regular basis do you learn and you pivot.

A mindset of it's okay to not have perfection is a good mindset because in your desire to gain perfection, we lose time. The most important asset for any CIO or any business leader is time.

The ability to scale rapidly, the ability to grow the business quickly, to pivot very rapidly are super important. This mix of innovation and risk and bias for action are incredibly important when it comes to any transformation whether it be within IT or outside of IT. Specific to IT transformation, I would say that it's important to really understand what the holy grail is, what the key capabilities are or the functions are that you don't want to break.

When I came to Seagate, my boss, the CEO, told me, "Look, Ravi. Everything is up for debate. Just don't break my factories." That was great guidance.

We took that guidance to heart. We ensured that we hardened our factories. We ensured that our infrastructure was upgraded in our factories. As we did the transformation, we carved out the rest of the business and said, "Okay. Let's really push very aggressively. Let's take more risks because it's easy for us to recover if we make a mistake."

It's important to find that balance. Where is it that you can take risks and you should take risks, and where is it that you want to be a little conservative?

Michael Krigsman: That's a very important point, a very nuanced point. You have to be clear when it comes to risk-taking on the nature of the risk that you're willing to assume. In other words, you have to take risks, but you also need to be clear around the type of risk and the extent of risk. It's not just, "Well, let's experiment a little bit here, and we'll see what breaks. Then we'll fix it." It's not like that.

Ravi Naik: Absolutely right. But when it comes to running a business or building a business, there is nothing more important than pushing the boundaries and taking greater risks. You want to fail.

If you're not failing, you're not trying. Those words are very true, and you really, really need to be able to push yourself and your team.

Look. I tell my team, "It's okay that we have bugs in the software, issues in our service. Our customers will call in and report an issue. It's perfectly fine."

What is not okay is not to able to respond to that. We have to have the ability and the agility to very quickly address customer issues or product issues because if you don't push the boundaries, if you're not making the mistakes, you're not really trying hard enough and your competition is going to catch up with you.

It's super important to really be very forward-leaning and leaning into risk. That is the single biggest lesson I've learned. You can never take enough risk when you're building a new business. You really need to push yourself and your organization and the boundaries on this.

Michael Krigsman: How do you talk with your team and encourage your team to take risks when I can imagine somebody thinking to themselves, "I really value my job. I don't want to make a mistake. I want to do the right thing, but yet he's telling me to take these risks. I'm not sure what to do." How do you coach such a person who is in that quandary?

Ravi Naik: When we started our journey with Lyve Cloud, what we did was we were self-funded. What I mean by that is we had an objective of bringing our IT spend to a specific acceptable level. Let me put it that way.

We were spending over $300 million a year in IT spend, and we brought that down. The goal was to bring it to somewhere in the $200 million range. We did that in 18 months' time.

The agreement that I had with the CEO at that point in time was, "Look. There's more room here for me to optimize the IT organization. But rather than write a check back to you, I would like to invest that because I've hit the metrics that the company was looking for. How about we take this little experiment of migrating our workload from the public cloud, building our own cloud, and we'll self-fund it?"

We self-funded it to rationalizing our IT ecosystem. But we also moved people. We started a redeployment program with our HR partners, and we redeployed a number of our IT engineers to our cloud business.

Now, there are all kinds of people. There were those people who were incredibly excited at the opportunity. They were these forward-leaning people. They wanted to do more. They wanted to learn. They wanted to drive this whole new idea. They were great. They fit right in.

Then there were those who were very risk-adverse, and they had to be convinced. They had to be coached into accepting the risk.

Then there were those who had to be dragged kicking and screaming. We were like, "You have to come in because we need your skills. This is where we need it most."

They were not happy. They were not excited. We dragged them into the role.

Fast forward three years. We now have people who have been in the company for 20, 25 years, and they were running a very easy, stable job, very repetitive, very unexciting roles. They're getting opportunities outside of Seagate.

I had a senior director recently come to me and say that he got a cloud operations role in a new cloud company, and he was kind of mixed in two minds whether he should take that up. It was a great opportunity.

I was excited for him. I said, "Look. You've worked here for 25 years doing the same thing for 25 years. Here, after investing a year and a half, two years in this new business, you have doors open for you."

That's really where the light dawns on people. Taking risk, whether it be in a business or in their career, is a positive thing. The ability for you to really scale new grounds is immense, and that's the experience I have myself.

I've always pushed myself. It's when I'm uncomfortable every day is when I know that I'm actually growing and learning. That's the goal to be uncomfortable on a daily basis.

Michael Krigsman: Give us the quick sales pitch on the product.

Ravi Naik: Seagate Lyve Cloud is the industry's leading mass-capacity object storage as a service. We are in the U.S. and Asia currently offering our services. We have four data centers, about half an exabyte in provision capacity.

We have customers who are Fortune 500 customers across the board from logistics to cybersecurity to collaboration technologies and a whole slew of semiconductor companies who are leveraging Lyve Cloud. Our product offering is essentially geared towards storing large volumes of data in the multi-petabyte capacity scale where customers can bring their data in and achieve a 70% savings on their storage costs.

Michael Krigsman: Unfortunately, we're out of time. I want to say a huge thank you to Ravi Naik (who is with Seagate) for taking time to be with us. Ravi, thank you very much for being with us today. I really appreciate it.

Ravi Naik: Thank you very much for having me. It has been a pleasure speaking with you and hope the audience enjoyed the conversation.

Michael Krigsman: A huge thank you to everybody who watched, especially to the people who asked such great questions. Now before you go, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the subscribe button at the top of our website so we can send you our newsletter and notify you of live shows. With that, check out CXOTalk.com. We have excellent shows coming up, and we will see you soon. Have a great day, everybody.

Ravi Naik: All CIOs have a high degree of paranoia and a high degree of optimism. That's really what is engrained as a CIO in me. I call that trait of CIOs to be that of a paranoid optimist.

On the CIO and IT strategy at Seagate

Michael Krigsman: That's Ravi Naik, Chief Information Officer and Executive Vice President of Lyve Cloud at Seagate.

Ravi Naik: I joined Seagate about five years ago, and I came to Seagate as a chief information officer with a primary goal of transforming Seagate IT. Now, we use the word transformation very loosely in our industry, but there was a very clear objective.

Seagate, at that time, was essentially running its operations across the globe and IT was a very federated organization. Each factory had its own IT organization. There were distributed architectures. There were teams that were duplicative.

The goal was to really bring about a seamless transformation in order to really improve the efficiency of the organization, of the IT organization. But more importantly, to provide value to the business in terms of bringing about process efficiency, tool efficiencies, architecture efficiencies and, through the process, streamlining the IT spend for this company.

I started in that role five years ago. We did some major initiatives. We did some very heavy lifting in about 18 months' time.

Changed the direction of the ship and, through the process, came a strategic initiative to build up our own services platform, to build up a cloud offering, which was a strategy that the senior leadership adopted. I was asked to help really run with that strategy and execute on it.

That's really how the two roles, the dual roles came about. One is the CIO role and the other is the executive vice president of storage services. In that role, I'm responsible for the entire services business for Seagate.

What is multi-cloud?

Michael Krigsman: You're very involved with multicloud, so why don't you tell us about that?

Ravi Naik: The ability to adopt the different cloud solutions across various clouds is really what multicloud is about. Today, we don't really live in a multicloud world. We use the term multicloud very loosely.

We live in a world of multiple clouds. There are multiple clouds that operate independently, and they do not talk to each other.

The workloads do not move seamlessly from one cloud to the other or from on-prem to the cloud or cloud to on-prem. That's the reason I say we live in a world of multiple clouds.

A true multicloud experience is where customers and practitioners (like CIOs) have the ability to move workloads seamlessly no matter where the technology or the application footprint is.

Michael Krigsman: Why has this term multicloud become so important?

Ravi Naik: The way the cloud has been architected, it has been designed to bring workloads and customers in. But it has made it incredibly difficult for workloads to migrate off.

Think about a situation where you are leveraging one platform today because it provides the best-in-class solution for machine learning. Six months down the line, a year down the line, there is a completely different platform where a different provider who has brought in a new, innovative solution, which you want to take advantage of.

Now, you can't take advantage of that in today's cloud environment. It's because of incredibly challenging models and frameworks that have been put in place to trap customers in, to lock customers in.

It is the trick that the cloud has really perfected, which is to bring customers and workloads in and then lock the workloads down so they cannot leave. They cannot take advantage of the innovation or new tools or solutions that are coming out from different platform providers. That's the reason multicloud is becoming important.

Multicloud is about really bringing that freedom. How do you ensure that you can make that switch and make the switch in a very seamless manner without disrupting the business, without disrupting what you have built over time? That's where multicloud becomes a very key element of our conversation.

To make it a little bit more practical, what I'd like to say is storage is an incredibly great example of that. When you put data in a storage platform, it is the data movement which is really where the friction is. If you're able to pull the data out and put it in an independent (what I call) storage plane, then you can very easily start leveraging all of these different tools that are available in the various clouds and service providers.

Michael Krigsman: You were just describing multicloud as the antidote to cloud vendor lock-in.

Ravi Naik: It is an antidote to cloud vendor lock-in, but it is also a very powerful mechanism for customers to start owning their data.

Today, the customers do not own their data because they have to pay for every transaction on their data. They pay for storage. They pay for egress. They pay for API. They pay for deletion. And this is your own data, so you pay for the same data over and over again.

Michael Krigsman: The products that you're building (and other multicloud vendors are building) do what? What do you enable?

Ravi Naik: What we do with Seagate's Lyve Cloud S3 compliance storage service is provide the storage backplane for customers. What do I mean by storage backplane?

Storage backplane is essentially a solution or a platform where customers can store their data without any fear of lock-in. You can bring in your data. You can take off your data. You can migrate your data on and off-prem without having to worry about paying these additional fees.

You pay for storage in a way where it was originally meant to be. Look, the idea of the public cloud was to simplify architectures, lower the invoices and the bills for customers, and accelerate business and innovation.

In reality, what has happened is the opposite. Architectures have become very focused on locking customer data in, bringing about friction for workload movement, and thus it has slowed down innovation.

Really, what we offer is the ability for customers to store data and pay for what you store and nothing else. There are no extras.

When you do that, you have that platform available where you keep your data. Now, you can use a slew of different products from various cloud vendors and service providers on that data.

At any point in time, if you want to let go of that data, you want it to be packaged and sent to you, we put it on a shuttle. We have our data shuttles, which are available where we store this data and we move it physically to your data center, so you can ingest it into your on-prem location.

Why is multicloud important to enterprise cloud adoption?

Michael Krigsman: Vamsi Paladugu (who I think is probably on your team) from Seagate, he raises a really good point. "Why is this seamless experience so unusual today?"

Ravi Naik: It's really about monetization. "When you look at monetization of customers' data, where do you draw the line?" is the question I ask myself and my fellow CIOs.

Yes, we are all in the business of building new technology, providing solutions, and monetizing that. But think about this from a point of view of buying a car.

You buy a car. You pay for it. You get into it. Now you have to pay to unlock the steering wheel. You are to pay for it for every mile that you're driving. Most importantly, you have to pay every time you want to unbuckle your seatbelt and open the door to get out.

That's essentially what we are talking about. That is not the experience that is going to help promote innovation and adoption and business growth.

It's super important for customers to have the ability to bring workloads onto a cloud platform and to not think about what it would mean a year, two years, or three years down the line in terms of cost models for us. Do I get trapped and locked in, or do I have the ability to take advantage of the solutions and services and innovation that is coming out in the ecosystem?

On cloud vendor lock-in in the public cloud

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What are the challenges for a CIO who is facing this kind of lock-in and facing the cost implications you were just describing, and they're sick of it? They say, "I've had enough." What are the challenges of alleviating that?

Ravi Naik: When we started our business transformation five years ago, which I mentioned earlier where there was a significant challenge in terms of harmonizing our architectures and rationalizing our cost model, we did a significant migration to the public cloud with the goal of really taking advantage of these latest tools, solutions, technologies, and helping our business in terms of building new analytics products and tools. One of the workloads was our 2.5-petabyte workload, which is a machine learning platform that we migrated to the public cloud, and it was a great experience for us.

The first year, we did great in terms of not only building the product and the platform for our internal business users, but it also helped us rationalize our costs quite a bit.

What we realized was the cost rationalization did not come from the adoption or the migration to the cloud but it actually came from the discipline that the cloud forces or imposes on you. That realization was something that came to us in about 12 months' time when we started seeing an increase in our costs.

It was very natural for our costs to start going up because we loved the platforms and we wanted more data to be stored. As our data volumes continued to increase, so did our cost.

We realized that our costs had doubled in 18 months' time as compared to how much we used to spend on-prem. Then in another six months' time, they doubled again. That's when we realized this is not a workable model for the long term because data will keep growing. And as data grows, if our costs keep growing exponentially, we are going to have a challenge in terms of really utilizing the intelligence or extracting the intelligence from all of this data that we are storing.

That's when we said we want to repatriate this workload. The repatriation, instead of coming back to a legacy architecture on-prem, we decided that we are going to build our own cloud infrastructure.

Given the fact that Seagate is a leader in mass capacity storage, it just made sense for us to build our own cloud for ourselves, and that's what we did. We migrated our 2.5-petabyte workload from the public cloud to our platform.

When I started talking about this to my friends in Silicon Valley, to my peers, what I came to realize is this is not a unique problem. This is a challenge that all the CIOs face today in the technology industry (and the nontechnology industry) because really what is happening is all businesses are becoming technology businesses and AI, ML, and analytics is really one of the key drivers for businesses to extract value.

Everyone is experiencing the same issue, so they started knocking on the door and said, "Hey, let's see if we can maybe take advantage of this platform that you've built," and that's really how we started Lyve Cloud.

Michael Krigsman: You started Lyve Cloud out of your own experience and your own observation of your costs just growing and growing and growing in an uncontrolled way. You figured you had to do something about it.

Ravi Naik: Yes. I will add, though, that we still run a number of our workloads in the public cloud. There are certain workloads where it makes sense to take advantage of what is existing in the world.

It is when it comes to mass capacity storage, workloads that require significant amounts of storage, that's where the current structure of the public cloud breaks down. What we mean by mass capacity is anyone who has north of a petabyte of data to store, starting from a petabyte to 10 to 100 petabytes.

Now think about it. Storing 100 petabytes of data on the public cloud at the cost models that are out there is exorbitant and could, in many cases, become detrimental for a business to grow.

Michael Krigsman: We have a really interesting question from Twitter. This is from Arsalan Khan, who is a regular listener and asks such great questions. He says, "Standardization is important when data is shared and transported between cloud vendors and on-prem. How did you convince leadership that this needed to be done?"

Ravi Naik: It's a process and a journey, is what I would say. The approach we took was we looked at the world's largest storage standard which customers or companies have adopted, and that is the S3 standard.

When you look at object storage service, S3 is the de facto standard. Now, of course, there is Microsoft Azure Blob. There is the GCP platform. But the S3 standard is something we decided to adopt, and that's really what Lyve Cloud has really picked up as a standard.

What we say is we are an S3-compliant object storage as a service. But also, there is a need for us to have translation services. Whether you run your workload on Azure of GCP, you should still be able to access your data irrespective of which platform that data is stored in.

On managing the dual roles of CIO and EVP of cloud services

Michael Krigsman: I think it's very fascinating that you built this service out of your own need because you were the CIO. And as CIO, you are in this unique position where you've got this dual role of being the chief information officer of this very large organization and, at the same time, being the executive vice president of this product. How do you manage that? Can you talk with us about that? These are such very different skill sets and objectives. How do you do this?

Ravi Naik: I've been a CIO for over 17 years (of various companies), and I'd say that the CIO job is something that I love doing. It's about really keeping a business running, making it more efficient, bringing about architectures that can not only provide support and service to a business for the near term, but these are solutions that have to last for a long period of time.

It's a role where you have to essentially make sure that you stitch a fabric together and the fabric stays in place for a long period of time.

I call that trait of CIOs to be that of a paranoid optimist. All CIOs have a high degree of paranoia and a high degree of optimism. That's really what is engrained as a CIO in me.

Now switching hats and becoming a business leader is a very different skill and a very different muscle. That's been something which has been incredibly enlightening to me. It's been a learning process over the last three years where you have to be hyper-optimistic while you're also driving your organization to really innovate, to break things, to take risks on a daily basis.

A CIO's role is to be a little paranoid to mitigate risks. But as a business leader, you're forcing yourself and your organization and your team to push the boundaries, to take risks.

This dichotomy of skills is an interesting experience for me because there is one skill that comes very naturally over the years and, to a great extent, I have to unlearn some of that. I have to unlearn and relearn and build new skills.

While there has been that experience for me to really build these new capabilities, there's also an advantage. Being a practitioner and a user of technology for a very long time, and I know what customers want and what they're looking for, the pain points that they experience, and bringing that world view into the role as a business leader, as someone who is building a product, building a service is incredibly important where the customer first mindset is always something that we want to think about.

What is it that a customer wants? What is it that enables a customer? It is not really the technology. It is really a service. What we provide is a service.

This has been a great learning for me. Really bringing the CIO role and the business role together has been a game changer not only for me but for a lot of my peers who I talk to when they learn from this.

How can CIOs overcome challenges to being business leaders?

Michael Krigsman: The common wisdom today for CIOs is that they should be more focused on being business leaders rather than technology leaders. In your case, you've kind of pushed that boundary very, very far because you're actually running a business. What are the challenges that a CIO may face as they try to develop those business leadership skills and also as they try to get their own organization to accept them as business leaders rather than as technologists alone?

Ravi Naik: The biggest learning that I have is not about the technology. It's about the people.

We are in the people business, and it is incredibly important to keep in mind that it is talent, skills, and organization construct which are the key differentiators between successful businesses and businesses that are not able to scale and grow.

There are different kinds of skills and capabilities required at different stages of a business. Having the ability to understand that, to sense that, and make the right changes is super important for organizations to grow and scale.

On the IT side of the house, what happens is we essentially are working on building a fabric, as I mentioned earlier. It is important to keep the lights on, keep the business running, not be disruptive, take minimal risks.

I call IT the oxygen in a room. No one ever thanks the oxygen in the room. You breathe in. You breathe out. You expect it to always be there.

It's only when you enter a room and there is no oxygen do you realize the value of what that oxygen was. That's how IT is. It's supposed to be there always and working.

You don't expect to be thanked for it, so you take a very different mindset. It is about having that paranoid optimistic mindset.

But when it comes to building a business, growing a skill, it's a completely different muscle. It is building the product, pushing the boundaries, engaging with customers. I've never done that.

I have such great respect for salespeople now. I've always been a buyer of technology, a practitioner, and someone who people are trying to reach out to and sell to.

I switched roles. I am now selling, and I realize what a tough job selling is. So, I have this newfound respect for salespeople and for marketing people. Learning their skills, learning all of these different functions has been super important.

Yes, technology is a key aspect, but it is about the support, it's about the service, about the sales, about the GTM. It is the 360-degree view of the business that I now have has been incredibly powerful for me.

On customer experience and the Chief Information Officer

Michael Krigsman: You mentioned the term customer experience. What can CIOs learn from this lesson of customer experience that they can apply in their own work?

Ravi Naik: There is a very good continuum between the CIO role and the role that I play as a business leader. It is important to keep in mind that CIOs have customers. They are internal customers.

Of course, the dynamic is very different. It is not a revenue generation arm of the company. But you still have to fulfill and satisfy the needs of your customers.

When it comes to an organization like Seagate, we are vertically integrated. We are a high-tech manufacturing company. It's a massive footprint around the world. Huge throughput. We have logistics. We have supply chain. We have incredibly complex financials.

Really, making sure that we stitch all of this together and are able to really drive efficiency and making sure that the business operates incredibly well is all about customer experience. Ensuring that your analytics reports, your manufacturing reports, your quality reports are all harmonized, that you are getting a single source of truth, the various business groups and users all see the world the same way, that's really what customer experience is.

When I take that out to the business world, it is really about how do you enable customers. It is the wow factor.

Yes, your customer expected a storage platform to be available at a lower price. But what is it that they don't get?

Or the other way to put it is what is it that they never expected that they are going to start getting? For example, in our case, yes, storage is what we are offering on the public cloud. We offer Lyve Cloud, which is a storage platform. But along with that, we offer a whole slew of services integrated to the customer.

There's a professional services arm that is integrated into the offering. We have Lyve Mobile, which is our data movement platform. We have Lyve Migration Services for customers who have large volumes of tapes that they want to digitize and store the data onto the public cloud.

When customers first start talking to us, they never expect us to be able to provide the slew of services, this broad range, this broad spectrum of capabilities. We come to them and say, "Look. You pay for storage and nothing else. Everything else is included."

Data movement, data storage, encryption, all of the capabilities that you need in terms of replication, in terms of immutability of data, it's all built into the platform. That's really what the customer experience is.

How do you bring about (on a daily basis) the capabilities that the customer would love to have but were not expecting to get from you? Pushing the boundaries every day is really what drives me and the team.

Michael Krigsman: We have another question from Arsalan Khan who says, "When it comes to innovation, how much time should non-technology leaders be spending?" Also, as an extension to that, I'll add, what is the relationship between the CIO (as a businessperson, as a technologist) and the other business leaders inside the organization?

Ravi Naik: We live in a world where technology is a lever. It is a tool for individuals, organizations, companies to really bring about what we were talking about earlier – great customer experience.

One doesn't have to be a technologist to be a business leader. One doesn't have to be a technologist to be an innovator.

In fact, if you look around us, there are loads of startups where the founders and CEOs do not have a technology background. They come from various backgrounds whether it be from the government sector, whether it be from healthcare, whether it be from finance.

That's really what it is about. It is having an idea of solving a problem.

Innovation is a mindset. Innovation is not really tied to technology. If you have the right mindset, you have the ability to take the right risks.

It's about innovation. It's about risk-taking. It's about pushing the boundaries. That's really what drives the world in terms of innovation in today's ecosystem.

How can cloud providers improve customer experience?

Michael Krigsman: We have another question from Twitter. This is from Wayne Anderson. He's another regular listener of CXOTalk who asks wonderful questions. Wayne Anderson says, "When a customer is heavily invested in a top three cloud provider, where do you see are the biggest opportunities to help them improve that customer experience and create value that the cloud environment in and of itself the cloud providers could not offer?"

Ravi Naik: We are complementary to the big three. We offer our services as a complementary platform to what the hyperscalers offer. That's the reason you'll keep hearing from me that we are a storage backplane.

What is a storage backplane mean? It means you store all your data in an environment that is democratic, that is free, that is frictionless, has no constraints in terms of data movement or additional costs.

That allows you to now start leveraging all the different solutions that the different CSPs, hyperscalers, and on-prem platforms provide you. That's the true multicloud ecosystem where you have data sitting in a backplane and you're able to leverage the application footprints and the innovations, whether it be in CSP A's or CSP B's environment.

Now, the innovation that comes out from that is it allows customers to really think broader, to think more horizontally in terms of how they want to structure and architect their businesses. They don't have to be locked into a single platform. They don't have to be locked into a single vendor. That's the freedom that we bring about.

Of course, there is the whole TCO model benefit. There's a dramatic TCO benefit given the fact that we are the world storage manufacturers and we provide storage to 50% of the world.

We bring in storage at a price point which is incredibly attractive to customers. The value is in terms of really mass capacity storage.

If you look at data analytics, 80% of big data analytics workloads today still sit on-prem. They sit on-prem because of the high cost to storage in the public cloud.

The way I look at that is we offer an opportunity for customers to migrate those workloads from their data centers to a new cloud-based architecture which brings them closer to the CSPs. Now, we are able to keep the data in Lyve Cloud and be able to leverage whether it be Azure or AWS or GCP's analytics platforms to access this data.

How do multicloud environments create business value?

Michael Krigsman: Okay. We have a related question from Lisbeth Shaw who says, "Multicloud is very much infrastructure. Does multicloud have a role in creating business value? What kind of non-technology business value does multicloud enable?"

Ravi Naik: Multicloud is more than just a concept. Multicloud is about bringing freedom to customers. When you bring freedom of data movement and workload migration, it by itself is going to really spawn a whole bunch of different use cases and capabilities that customers are going to need, whether it be technology use cases or professional services use cases, architecting your future applications to leverage the different capabilities across multiple CSPs and stitching a solution together.

Yes, there will be a number of opportunities for technology and nontechnology organizations to really look at multicloud in a way that it will build new solutions and product offerings in the industry.

How can CIOs be effective driving digital transformation?

Michael Krigsman: What advice do you have for CIOs who want to play an active role in digital transformation or business transformation? When I think about your story of being the CIO and then developing this product offering, to me that defines transformation. What advice do you have for CIOs who are looking at this?

Ravi Naik: The bias towards action is key. I have always been a person who believes in action because only through action do you realize whether your theories and ideas are going to get the benefit that they promise to.

What I would say is that I have a very strong bias for action. I also have an appetite for risk. It is important that action and risk go hand-in-hand.

It is super important because only when you keep pushing the boundaries, you keep pushing the envelope do you break things. It's through this breaking of things on a regular basis do you learn and you pivot.

A mindset of it's okay to not have perfection is a good mindset because in your desire to gain perfection, we lose time. The most important asset for any CIO or any business leader is time.

The ability to scale rapidly, the ability to grow the business quickly, to pivot very rapidly are super important. This mix of innovation and risk and bias for action are incredibly important when it comes to any transformation whether it be within IT or outside of IT. Specific to IT transformation, I would say that it's important to really understand what the holy grail is, what the key capabilities are or the functions are that you don't want to break.

When I came to Seagate, my boss, the CEO, told me, "Look, Ravi. Everything is up for debate. Just don't break my factories." That was great guidance.

We took that guidance to heart. We ensured that we hardened our factories. We ensured that our infrastructure was upgraded in our factories. As we did the transformation, we carved out the rest of the business and said, "Okay. Let's really push very aggressively. Let's take more risks because it's easy for us to recover if we make a mistake."

It's important to find that balance. Where is it that you can take risks and you should take risks, and where is it that you want to be a little conservative?

Michael Krigsman: That's a very important point, a very nuanced point. You have to be clear when it comes to risk-taking on the nature of the risk that you're willing to assume. In other words, you have to take risks, but you also need to be clear around the type of risk and the extent of risk. It's not just, "Well, let's experiment a little bit here, and we'll see what breaks. Then we'll fix it." It's not like that.

Ravi Naik: Absolutely right. But when it comes to running a business or building a business, there is nothing more important than pushing the boundaries and taking greater risks. You want to fail.

If you're not failing, you're not trying. Those words are very true, and you really, really need to be able to push yourself and your team.

Look. I tell my team, "It's okay that we have bugs in the software, issues in our service. Our customers will call in and report an issue. It's perfectly fine."

What is not okay is not to able to respond to that. We have to have the ability and the agility to very quickly address customer issues or product issues because if you don't push the boundaries, if you're not making the mistakes, you're not really trying hard enough and your competition is going to catch up with you.

It's super important to really be very forward-leaning and leaning into risk. That is the single biggest lesson I've learned. You can never take enough risk when you're building a new business. You really need to push yourself and your organization and the boundaries on this.

Michael Krigsman: How do you talk with your team and encourage your team to take risks when I can imagine somebody thinking to themselves, "I really value my job. I don't want to make a mistake. I want to do the right thing, but yet he's telling me to take these risks. I'm not sure what to do." How do you coach such a person who is in that quandary?

Ravi Naik: When we started our journey with Lyve Cloud, what we did was we were self-funded. What I mean by that is we had an objective of bringing our IT spend to a specific acceptable level. Let me put it that way.

We were spending over $300 million a year in IT spend, and we brought that down. The goal was to bring it to somewhere in the $200 million range. We did that in 18 months' time.

The agreement that I had with the CEO at that point in time was, "Look. There's more room here for me to optimize the IT organization. But rather than write a check back to you, I would like to invest that because I've hit the metrics that the company was looking for. How about we take this little experiment of migrating our workload from the public cloud, building our own cloud, and we'll self-fund it?"

We self-funded it to rationalizing our IT ecosystem. But we also moved people. We started a redeployment program with our HR partners, and we redeployed a number of our IT engineers to our cloud business.

Now, there are all kinds of people. There were those people who were incredibly excited at the opportunity. They were these forward-leaning people. They wanted to do more. They wanted to learn. They wanted to drive this whole new idea. They were great. They fit right in.

Then there were those who were very risk-adverse, and they had to be convinced. They had to be coached into accepting the risk.

Then there were those who had to be dragged kicking and screaming. We were like, "You have to come in because we need your skills. This is where we need it most."

They were not happy. They were not excited. We dragged them into the role.

Fast forward three years. We now have people who have been in the company for 20, 25 years, and they were running a very easy, stable job, very repetitive, very unexciting roles. They're getting opportunities outside of Seagate.

I had a senior director recently come to me and say that he got a cloud operations role in a new cloud company, and he was kind of mixed in two minds whether he should take that up. It was a great opportunity.

I was excited for him. I said, "Look. You've worked here for 25 years doing the same thing for 25 years. Here, after investing a year and a half, two years in this new business, you have doors open for you."

That's really where the light dawns on people. Taking risk, whether it be in a business or in their career, is a positive thing. The ability for you to really scale new grounds is immense, and that's the experience I have myself.

I've always pushed myself. It's when I'm uncomfortable every day is when I know that I'm actually growing and learning. That's the goal to be uncomfortable on a daily basis.

Michael Krigsman: Give us the quick sales pitch on the product.

Ravi Naik: Seagate Lyve Cloud is the industry's leading mass-capacity object storage as a service. We are in the U.S. and Asia currently offering our services. We have four data centers, about half an exabyte in provision capacity.

We have customers who are Fortune 500 customers across the board from logistics to cybersecurity to collaboration technologies and a whole slew of semiconductor companies who are leveraging Lyve Cloud. Our product offering is essentially geared towards storing large volumes of data in the multi-petabyte capacity scale where customers can bring their data in and achieve a 70% savings on their storage costs.

Michael Krigsman: Unfortunately, we're out of time. I want to say a huge thank you to Ravi Naik (who is with Seagate) for taking time to be with us. Ravi, thank you very much for being with us today. I really appreciate it.

Ravi Naik: Thank you very much for having me. It has been a pleasure speaking with you and hope the audience enjoyed the conversation.

Michael Krigsman: A huge thank you to everybody who watched, especially to the people who asked such great questions. Now before you go, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the subscribe button at the top of our website so we can send you our newsletter and notify you of live shows. With that, check out CXOTalk.com. We have excellent shows coming up, and we will see you soon. Have a great day, everybody.