Should an IT executive know how to do the work of their staff members?

Top Answer : If that is an expectation, then the IT executive would have to be a jack of all IT trades and master of all of them.   With an IT staff of over 10 people, it is an almost impossible task.

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11 comments
4 upvotes
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Green Processor
IT, Software
If that is an expectation, then the IT executive would have to be a jack of all IT trades and master of all of them.   With an IT staff of over 10 people, it is an almost impossible task.
0 upvotes
Red USB Stick
IT, Manufacturing
They need to have had some expertise in an area. And general knowledge of many IT topics. I’ve worked side by side and above leaders who went straight into managing and usually they were not the best performing There are always exceptions but I’d take the experienced leader over the technically inexperienced 9 times out of 10
2 upvotes
Orange USB Stick
Engineering, Software
No, they should be able to speak  their language.
0 upvotes
Yellow Processor
IT, Transportation and Warehousing
In my case I do. Since all of my team are developers and I’m an excellent developer. This helps them code better, whenever they have doubts or a problem they can’t fix, they come to me and I’ll guide/help them. In the end, it helps a lot to know how do their work for the team.
0 upvotes
Pink USB Stick
IT, Educational Services
As an IT executive I believe we should know what they’re doing and, most importantly, why. Managers and Directors should have more hands-on skills. The higher the rise, the less the hands-on. I miss it.
2 upvotes
Black Charger
IT, Hardware
IT executive should have a pretty good idea on what their teams are doing from technical perspective. However I don't think they should be involved in hands on all the time as that is not primary role and function. Technology changes very rapidly too so you run a higher risk of issues if you have some IT executive do work that they haven't done in a couple of years. Senior manager and below should be fairly technical and director and above are more leadership roles (unless its a small startup where CTO's are frequently hands on developers etc.).
0 upvotes
Orange Hard Drive
IT, Finance, Banking & Insurance
Familiarity, yes, possibly the ability to cover in an emergency, but there is a slippery slope between being a resource for your team and micromanaging...
1 upvotes
Yellow Charger
IT, Health Care and Social Assistance
This question reminds me of the old saying, people don’t quit bad jobs, they quit bad bosses. The question also seems to insinuate that for an IT executive to be a good boss the executive needs to know how to do the work of their team members. I my experience, this does not make a great boss. Technical competence in an IT executive is an important aspect of leadership, but it is not the only factor of a good leader. Studies have shown that the benefit of having a competent boss is the largest positive influence of a team member’s job satisfaction and performance. But what does competency look like? Technical acumen or the ability to support the team member in their role to be successful? There have been many instances of IT leaders that lead highly technical teams but do not have the same background as their team. Truly effective leaders add value by enabling things to happen, not necessarily by doing the work. Good leaders practice seeing the bigger picture, and leave mastering the details to their team.
4 upvotes
Yellow USB Stick
IT, Finance, Banking & Insurance
No but they should know how to evaluate the effectiveness of their work.
1 upvotes
Red Server
IT, Retail
They soups have fundamental idea on the in’s and out, but I don’t think they need to have the same knowledge as their technical people.
0 upvotes
Black Cloud
IT, Software
They need to have deep knowledge in some areas and a general understanding of others.
0 upvotes