A leadership model and role description for the CIO 2.0
The main development in the role of the new CIO is the shift from a technology-centric role to a business-centric and innovation role. The skills and technical competencies that characterised the CIO of the past are still essential, but are no longer sufficient to fulfil all expectations of this function moving forward.
The CIO 2.0 requires additional leadership skills which will define his/her success in running a department that is moving from an infrastructure and technology focus to an organisation that uses a process approach to create agility and respond rapidly to an increasingly fast-changing business environment.
Whereas the original CIO role focused on managing a smooth IT operation and department, today he or she needs to finds a balance between these management skills and the innovation and coaching skills required in the new leadership role. It is important to note that it is not a choice between these three leadership styles but a balanced combination of the three that will enable an effective chief information officer.
The innovation component of the role allows the CIO to define an effective strategy that is aligned with business expectations. Now that all parts of an organisation are affected by technology innovation, this is a very challenging part of the role that is continuously gaining in importance. Studies have shown that the innovative, entrepreneurial part of the role has become more important than the CIO’s purely technical IT skills.
The coaching component of the role centres on listening, motivating and developing a high-impact IT organisation that radiates the business focus and agility required today. The transition from an IT product-centric approach towards a business solution approach is certainly not limited to the CIO function itself, but is a shift that affects the entire information department. New roles are emerging, with IT business partners deeply embedded in the internal or external customer organisation so as to understand the business challenges and come up with appropriate solutions. It is obvious that managing these new roles in the IT department requires enhanced leadership and people
management skills. As these new roles do not even always report into the IT function itself, the coaching and influencing skills of the CIO 2.0 are even more important.
The third component, which is the management part of the role, is the aspect that is normally best understood—but unfortunately, it often has a too dominant a presence in the CIO function. Having a vision without the structure, organisation and governance to execute that vision effectively will evidently not help the organisation either.
Inside magazine issue 6, October 2014
Inside is Deloitte’s quarterly magazine offering an exclusive insight into best practices, trends and opportunities faced by our clients across all industries.
Inside focuses on the main hot topics relevant for the market (Asset management, Banking, Insurance, Public sector, Healthcare, Private equity, Real estate, TMT, Manufacturing and consumer business, Transport and logistics).