The CIO of tomorrow must think like the CEO of today

Success for the modern CIO is inherently complex, as identified by CareGroup Healthcare System CIO John Halamka in an article for Computerworld.

It’s a thoughtful piece that reflects on the seemingly impossible demand for the modern CIO to balance massive change in a reliable, flexible and secure manner. But is the CIO’s role really impossible?

Halamka posts his three key challenges for 2012 – customers, communications and processes – and makes a great point about the IT leader. To avoid failure, tomorrow’s CIO basically has to think like today’s CEO:

“Modern CIOs are not technologists or evangelists for innovation, but customer relationship managers, strategic communicators and project managers, delicately balancing project portfolios, available resources and governance. They must think more like CEOs about business needs and future strategies to ensure that critical information technology is deployed by the time it is needed.”

Halamka concludes that CIOs should be judged on their ability to manage demand and achieve reasonable levels of customer satisfaction, while focusing on a narrower project portfolio and delivering it at a faster pace.

The piece is hitting a tone, with Twitter respondents such as Elliot Ross and Eric Egnet referring to the piece. So, are you changing your focus in 2012? And if the CIO fails to focus, and think more like a CEO, what will be the consequences?

Related posts:

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  3. CIOs and businesses must do more to engage online customers
  4. Did the future CIO really become the next-generation CEO?

3 comments to The CIO of tomorrow must think like the CEO of today

  • Struggling with the title of your post.

    While I truly and whole heartedly support the context and content of your message, I believe today’s CIO must think and act like the CEO today and tomorrow. As you mention, CIO and IT leaders can’t wait – we have to get out in front of the business with proactive innovation and business value creation.

    Chris, ITIntelSME

  • Editor

    So, a better title might be the CIO of tomorrow must think like the CEO of tomorrow…?

  • I think it starts with today’s CIO. At Intel IT, we say that the CIO (and rest of IT team), must think like the CEO (business leaders) – then use IT innovation to deliver business value.

    Chris, ITIntelSME

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