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SIM-Colorado “5 Critical Skills of Successful IT Executives”. Steve Weber, Vice President & Executive Partner Gartner Executive Programs April 15, 2008. Why is This Important?. “People…Single Most Prominent Issue on 2007 CIO Survey” (Mark McDonald)

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sim colorado 5 critical skills of successful it executives

SIM-Colorado“5 Critical Skills of Successful IT Executives”

Steve Weber, Vice President & Executive Partner

Gartner Executive Programs

April 15, 2008

why is this important
Why is This Important?
  • “People…Single Most Prominent Issue on 2007 CIO Survey” (Mark McDonald)
  • #1 Reason the CIO was let go (CEO response)
    • “The CIO was not the type of leader we need to grow, consolidate, do M&A, etc.”

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

2008 cio survey
2008 CIO Survey
  • CEOs are impatient…more than ever!
  • CIOs know what to do, BUT
    • Only 28% have right skills in IT meet bus needs
  • Thus flawless delivery, especially sustained delivery that makes a difference to the CEO, is “top of mind” concern!

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

cios see challenges in implementing many of their own strategies for 2008
CIOs see challenges in implementing many of their own strategies for 2008.

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

success in it has changed
Success in IT has Changed!
  • “Old Days” Success
    • Technical prowess
    • Tightly manage cost
    • Personal problem solving
    • Resource scheduler
    • Do what tell me to do
      • Servant mentality
    • “More features is better”

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

success today
Success Today!
  • 5 Critical Skills!
    • Technical – but different
    • Management
    • Business
    • Leadership
    • Behavioral

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

technical skills
Technical skills
  • “Make sure” things work well and “easier”
  • Fit in architecture/environment?
  • Focus on the CAPABILITY of the technology
    • Help solve your business’s true issues?
  • Poster child - standards/simplicity/retire/reuse
    • Software package example
  • Worry about what technical decisions will incur undue risk or cost (take thoughtful risk)

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

management skills
Management Skills
  • All IT needs to work at a reasonable cost
    • Infrastructure, projects, help desks, etc.
    • Worry about investment/benefit
  • Passion for process improvement
    • Less time, less money every day
  • Staff needs to get better every day
    • Feedback, recognition, REAL development actions
  • Active risk identification/management
  • Effective communication is DAILY priority

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

communication principles
Communication Principles
  • What are successful communications?
    • The message is key (not the content)
      • Does NOT vary by audience
    • Content uses the language of the audience
      • DOES vary by audience
    • Timing is as important as delivery vehicle
      • Vehicle often varies by audience

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

communication principles11
Communication Principles
  • Subtleties
    • Make it as easy as possible for audience to understand the message
      • Be consistent
      • Explicitly refer back to previous communications
    • Always be able to share “why”
    • Know difference between FYI vs. approval

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

business skills
Business Skills
  • Run IT shop like a business
    • Reduce unit costs over time
    • Daily create “capacity”…which creates agility
    • Deliverable focused job descriptions
  • Put “Business” in Business Relationships
    • Orientation - examples
    • Partnership
    • Language

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

you know you have a partnership when
You Know You Have a Partnership When:
  • You solve the same problems
  • You leverage each others’ strengths
  • You have the same information
  • You operate as if the glass is half full

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

partnership cont
Partnership (cont)
  • You use the other party’s language
  • You provide a safe environment
  • Your commitment to the partnership overrides all else

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

business terms processes
Business Terms/Processes
  • All Projects/Upgrades=Business terms/benefits
    • Investments….NOT costs
    • “What business problem does it solve?”
  • Business language – varies by level in org
    • Benefits, investment, risks, assumptions, alternatives
    • Not “no” or “more features” or “specs”
    • “Time” and “do more with less” is a big overriding concern.
  • Use business decision processes (and them)

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

leadership skills
Leadership Skills
  • Self awareness is not an option for anyone!
  • “Make sure” appropriate change occurs
    • Willing to confront
  • Willing to make tough, ambiguous decisions
    • Decisions = f (context, information, time)
  • Willing to exercise judgment
    • “Why” is very important
  • Accountability/ownership is second nature

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

everyone in it needs to lead
Everyone in IT needs to Lead!
  • “Leadership is a serious meddling in the lives of other people.”
  • “A real leader faces the music, even when he/she doesn’t like the tune.”
  • “A leader is one who knows the way, shows the way, and goes the way.”
  • “Change is inevitable…Growth is optional.”
  • “Knowledge is free…Bring your own container.”

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

behavioral skills
Behavioral Skills
  • Determine what’s acceptable AND reward it!
    • Define and communicate
    • Then…consistently reinforce, recognize, pay for it
  • Be a role model -Words and actions
  • Examples

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

recommendations
Recommendations
  • Major change from past – start now!
    • Skills needed
    • What is success and how know it
    • Great performance = results, process, behaviors
  • Lot of subtleties to be successful – get a mentor
  • “IT Executives” means ALL IT leaders
    • Cascade down throughout IT organization

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

questions
Questions?

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

slide21
CIOs recognize the impact of business expectations and the need to build capability to realize results.

CORPORATE OVERVIEW

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