Ken Cede–o Photography

High-Tech Solutions

Wesley C. Dias is a problem solver. At his Washington, D.C.-based Argosy Consulting Group, he helps companies and government agencies use new technology to handle information flow and get the most out of their investment. Otherwise, he says, high-tech computers are just glorified typewriters. “You don’t need a $2,500 machine to type,” says Dias. “The work flow in that situation stays exactly the same.”
      Argosy advises various industries on how to take maximum advantage of technology. Dias and his business partner, Mark J. Hamilton, count information technology companies, physicians, credit unions, federal government agencies, and even law enforcement agencies among their clients. “As computers began to play an information management role, people moved away from restructuring and began throwing hardware at issues,” says the College of Arts and Sciences graduate. “This is all about organizational evolution.”
     In fact, it’s not surprising to find companies suffering from “growing pains” as they begin to incorporate new technology into their work, Dias says. “We see ourselves facilitating their effectiveness in dealing with the changes so they can be successful. It all comes down to problem solving.”
      Besides work, fitness and meditation are mainstays of Dias’s life. In 1994, he discovered Chi Gung, an internal martial arts technique that combines exercise and meditation to promote physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. Dias says Chi Gung “enables you to identify, strengthen, and reinvent yourself constantly and lovingly. You become comfortable with the path you’ve chosen.”
      Dias credits Chi Gung, as part of his personal development regimen, with giving him confidence in decision-making, and helping him maintain his vision, stamina, and creativity. “It’s amazingly freeing to embrace complete personal power and responsibility and realize at each moment you’ve made the best decision you could make at the time,” he says.

—Erin Duggan

courtesy of Mark Stevens

Musical Memories

Mark Stevens doesn’t have to sit around wondering if his product is selling. In fact, he usually knows within minutes, because he creates specialized music collections that are advertised through television commercials or 30-minute infomercials. Think “Singers and Songwriters,” “Treasury of Christmas,” “Classic Rhythm & Blues,” or “Songs 4 Worship.” If viewers want to buy, they pick up the phone right away. “We create music packages aimed at an audience older than the traditional music store customer,” says Stevens, president of Time-Life Music in Alexandria, Virginia. “We license the music from major record labels and package and promote it in a very emotional way. The secret is putting together the favorite music people grew up with, and marketing it with a certain spin that lets them revisit that era.”
      Stevens got his start while still at SU. As a dual major in television-radio-film in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and marketing management in the School of Management, he was part of a team that won a national contest sponsored by the American Advertising Federation. The team’s efforts led to a job offer for Stevens from advertising giant Young & Rubicam.
      In 1981 Stevens moved to Home Box Office, where he soon became a regional manager and then director of advertising. He jumped into a new area of entertainment with HBO’s parent company, Time Warner (now AOL/Time Warner), eventually rising to his present position. “We sell a lot of music because we evoke memories by combining the right music selections with classic footage of performances and experiences,” says Stevens, who clearly loves his work. “Knowing that people buy and enjoy what we’ve produced is a great feeling.”

—Carol North Schmuckler


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