What are people unaware of when first stepping into an executive role in IT?

General, Job The need to build business relationships.

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The need to build business relationships.

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That they need to invest much more time in stakeholder management than in technology management.

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Its busines.. business.. business. Just think only about business

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The need to listen and not speak is critical. This helps determine where issues, risks, priorities arise.

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Need to build business relationships

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Don’t underestimate the power and important of building and maintaining those informal channels to get things done!!

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Understanding the current landscape (People, Processes, Technology) before implementing changes. 

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Crisp communication skills take a lot of work to develop for different audiences Selling ideas is essential

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That you need to learn soft skills that you lack off.

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Applying business perspective towards technology

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Business strategy

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The most rewarding thing as a functional leader or an engineering leader is you get to be in that spot where you’re finding the ways that your function can be uniquely valuable to the business. One of the things that’s been most rewarding, as I’ve gotten into more senior roles, is getting to think strategically about how engineering can be valuable, instead of only thinking of how we increase the velocity of the team. The strategic perspective is to ask, "what should engineering actually be doing?" And how should we balance between the operations team and the engineering team in different types of tasks? What ratio of headcount should be allocated to engineering and why? What would we have to actually see from that data and effectiveness perspective to justify our engineering investment that we’re making? I think these are the questions that became really powerful. Also, being in the data of the business and thinking about the problem is deeply rewarding as well. You can only have so many people spend most of their time thinking about the evolving business at an abstract level. Because you need most people to be thinking about it at a very concrete level. Having the privilege to think abstractly, which is one of my favorite ways to think, in a way that’s actually valuable is something I’ve enjoyed as well.