Leadership

Leadership
Does the CIO play a key role in creating a customer-focused organization?

Top Answer : If they don't, they aren't doing their job.

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Leadership Under PressureLeadership Under Pressure

Leadership pressure: What are the causes and how do leaders cope, especially during a generational crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic?

Establishing relationships with my business stakeholders is more critical to my effectiveness than with IT stakeholders.

Top Answer : But aren’t some of your business stakeholders also IT stakeholders? I agree that you need to have the business relationships to understand the business and where it is going but some of these same people are also IT stakeholders in ownership over some of the IT services we use. Maybe I just don’t understand your definition here…

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Can CIOs act as the CDOs for organizations today? Or do companies really need a separate CDO who can partner with the business and IT to drive digital transformation?”

Top Answer : First, worth clarifying if we are talking Chief DIGITAL or Chief DATA Officer. In either case, while I used to think that the existence of the CDO meant that the CIO was failing at their jobs, in  today's world, I think the roles are distinctly different, though in the end it really depends on the people.  CDOs as digital officers are really focused on the digital transformation of their companies, and inherently have an external focus.  CDOs as data officers are focused on key information management within the company - optimizing data as an asset.  The CIO at many companies predominantly focused on internal operations, business and user productivity. The skillsets needed and more importantly, the incentives for these objectives are often different.  Intertwining them is possible, but I think in many cases companies are better served by having a separate focus.   All of that is dependent on whom we are talking about both in terms of people and the business.  The people matter even more in this question than anything.  A company with a super strong CIO working for a digitally minded CEO probably doesn't benefit from a CDO nearly as much as an internally focused CIO working in a business with complex operations that has also recently decided to transform the delivery of their products to include more digital delivery would.   So in the end, I think it really depends.

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Remote Employee EngagementRemote Employee Engagement

What strategies have IT leaders been implementing to foster and track remote employee engagement?

Assume that you're organization has a ransomware attach, what would you recommend to bod

Top Answer : Have an IRT ready and trained.

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IT Hiring Q2 2021IT Hiring Q2 2021

What's the state of hiring for IT in Q2 2021?

What is your favorite mobile app?

Top Answer : Pulse?

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How do you turn executive leadership into champions for IT initiatives?

Top Answer : When I was at a biotech company, we were implementing Duo, which had just come out at the time. The CEO hated it. And of course, at a small/medium-sized biotech, the IT person is always helping the CEO with their personal computers, etc. He had an AOL account that got compromised and sent an email out to his entire address book to click on the virus. He told me to fix it and just update his password to make it go away, but he used the same password for nearly everything, and the other passwords he kept in an outlook contact. So I explained that we need two-factor authentication because we have to protect all of our IP. But he says, "No, it's too much of a pain. We have VPN. Nobody's going to get in." I had to think of a way to show him how important it is. So I asked, "What do you use to do your stock trading?" He said, "E-Trade." So I got to his computer and went to etrade.com, used his AOL email address with the password that I knew, and got right in. I said, "Oh, you had a ton of money in there. I think I'll just transfer this to my personal bank account." And he's like, "Wait, wait a minute. How did you get in there? How did you know what it was?" I told him, "You made it super easy." Then he had a Gmail account that also got attacked, so then he became this big two-factor proponent and he was telling everybody on the E-Staff that they had to do it. Across the rest of the company, he championed why we need to implement this, and why it's not such a pain in the butt.

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What strategies have you found effective to foster faster decision-making?

Top Answer : At Amazon they implemented the use of tenants to empower decision-making within a team without having to escalate to upper management. Each team has a unique set of tenants—another way to describe guardrails. The idea is that the decision-making process in finance is different to somebody that's in engineering. Every team is responsible for developing tenants that are specific to them. If you're raising decisions up to upper management, that’s an indicator that you may have the wrong tenants in place. There's a belief that upper management should spend the majority of their time focusing on strategic decisions that take advantage of the experiences you have accumulated during the course of your career. And that's the best place you could put it.

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I have been grateful for the success I have had with my career and I have recently applied for a CTO position with a small business in the trucking and trade industries. I have never had an interview for a C-level position before and I'd like to hear what questions you were asked and how best to prepare for the interviews. I have done a lot of research both on the company and what type of questions to expect but I'd like to hear from you.

Top Answer : For a small company, as a CTO, you will probably be expected to have good project management skills, specially related to Scrum and Agile, and you will be also expected to have excellent technical skills, to set the scalable architecture while also giving life to the product code and setting the code standards. But you must be able to know the difference and do that up to a point. You need to delegate, create your team and set milestones and tasks. In summary: - Excel on software management, being able to divide the product in chunks and have a good idea of the time, effort and skills required. - Be a good leader, inspiring candidates to the company and working on their production metrics, motivation and retention - Provide deliverables on the product and team metrics - Mentor your team, technically - Have a clear understanding of the architecture, cloud, clusters and each piece of software needed on the stack. You might have never been there, but you need to be able you have these skills, and think like an entrepreneur, an owner.

Should IT leaders focus more on team enablement or team leadership?

Top Answer : If you ever tell somebody in an interview, "I'm a big teams person," they just laugh at you like, "Oh, everybody's a team person." As if that's why teams fail all the time because everyone's a team person. Teams are really vital at a number of levels, however, you look at them. Enabling teams to be successful is critical. It should be obvious that it's critical to the success of almost any company.

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How will the CIO's role transform over the next 5 years?

Top Answer : I see IT taking on a more strategic role for nearly every business going forward. The expectation is and will continue to be for CIOs to help modernize the business. Some companies create a CDO role for this transformation (especially if the CIO is culturally seen as a back office function). As a result, CIOs will no longer have their traditional KPIs. Instead new KPIs will be tied to revenue, profitability, customer acquisition, and others that haven’t traditionally been within the IT org.

Because technology now touches every part of the business, another change is that the CIO will likely take on more responsibility in connecting the business end-to-end. One example of this is with IoT. Some of the mining companies in Australia have recently invested in autonomous mining trucks, which work 24*7 and can be manned remotely. While this was under the purview of the Operations group in the field, it is now rolling into IT, which makes sense. IT now collects this data and optimizes scheduling, maintenance, routing and at some point will also be able to bring in ML, AI, and robotics to automate the entire process.

Lastly, due to rapid progress in the commoditization of standard offerings, a number of things will transform within the domain of the CIO. One example of this is that at SAP, we have an IT strategic direction of cloud first, which implicitly means IT will own less infrastructure in the future, but become the broker of services sourced from many places. We want to get everything as a service and while we continue to provide value-added services on top, directionally, it’s unlikely IT would focus on bare metal infrastructure. Unless it’s part of the core business, I also see this happening across the board for CIOs.

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