Modern CIOs have many personas and face great challenges.
CIO as Chief Innovation Officer
- CIOs as Chief Innovation Officer: Can you Clarify the Business’s Expectation from IT via Innovation Lens? As businesses embark on the “Digital Era” of computing and managing, with the changing nature of information & technology, IT is always in the changing environment creating unexpected situations and requiring quick and appropriate responses based on the conditions. IT has to change with the faster speed and also drive the business transformation practively. The nature of the digital IT leadership needs to focus on information and innovation, and the primary role of the CIO needs to become the "Chief Innovation Officer," to not just running IT as a support center, but as the innovation engine to catalyze business growth and build the organization’s differentiated competency and long-term winning advantage.
- CIOs as “Chief Intrapreneur Officer”: Practicing Entrepreneurship in IT Contemporary CIOs have multiple personas, "Chief Innovation Officer," and “Chief Intrapreneur Officers,” are the most pertinent titles for CIOs to fit the digital leadership role in running IT as a business. Companies are recognizing that IT is roughly coupled to the business strategy as an innovation engine. With increasing pace of changes, CIOs generally have greater opportunities to stand out and practice digital leadership in driving innovation across their companies. Being entrepreneurial is first the mindset, then an attitude and skills are the easier part to be developed. More and more forward-looking IT organizations are practicing entrepreneurship and running IT as a software startup to play the niche and make continuous deliveries.
- CIOs as “Chief Idea & Innovation Officer”: Five Principles for Idea Evaluation and Management Innovation is the only way businesses can build differentiated advantages in face of fierce competitions in the digital era. From the business perspective, innovation is the mechanism through which you grow and evolve something to something great - higher value-add or ever breakthrough, or something new or better based on a combination or modification of previous attributes/approaches. Innovations can range from small to game changers. Also, it is important to note that within the organizations, innovation is rarely an individual action; rather it is a team effort, often across multiple organizational silos. More often than not, IT is the disruptive force of digital innovation, CIOs as “Chief Idea & Innovation Officer” - How should you set principles for evaluating and managing ideas effectively?
- CIOs as Chief Innovation Officer: Can you Play the Role at the Big Table More and more organizations invite their CIOs to the big table for strategic discussions. The issue is that there are too many examples that CIOs (or other senior IT executives) have a "seat at the table," participate the conversations with non-IT executive decision makers, but they are often not given the "appropriate voice" in getting engaged in discussions, focused on the quest to leverage IT initiatives. So what are some effective ways to get to the point where IT is considered a driver as well as an enabler? CIOs, though you have a seat at the table, do you play the role and have the voice over the table? Formal meetings with individual stakeholders are essential, so are informal meetings. What should they focus on? How should they differ from Board meetings or governance meetings?
- CIOs as Chief Intrapreneur Officer: How to Encourage Creativity and Manage Innovation? It's common that many IT companies tend to focus more on their core competencies with age and often forget about the value of innovation. Without encouraging creativity, organizations would be upstaged by the ones that are creative because disruptive innovation will happen no matter how well you prepare. Digital IT needs to be run as a business, and digital CIOs should be the “Chief Intrapreneur Officer,” with “whole brain” thinking: Being logic in your mind based on your years of engineering training and experiences and be creative in your heart, dream big and think big. Because the CIO’s vision will directly impact their organization’s strategic perspective for the long term. So, how to encourage creativity and manage innovation effectively?
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