Wednesday, November 23, 2016

"CIO Master" Book Tuning #143 Running a Future-Driven IT Organization to Catalyze Growth

The future-driven IT organizations step out of the traditional IT box, to understand the business and customers better via longer time frame.

Organizations large or small are at the digital journey, corporate IT needs to shift from a back office support center to a future-driven growth engine. Because more often information is the lifeblood and technology is the disruptive force of digital transformation.



Visionary and motivational IT leaders are in demand: Vision is to zoom into the future as if it were closer. Visionary IT leaders are business strategists who can leverage the latest technologies and navigate the organization towards the uncharted water or blurred digital territories. Nowadays, IT is the business, and IT management has a broadened scope, it often needs to work on or across the systems, not just in the system, to weave the digital hyperconnectivity through the entire digital ecosystem. To be an effective and motivational leaders, IT leaders needs to set a clear vision that shows a direction which sets in clarity. Setting a vision that isn't high enough doesn't challenge the organization to excel and unleash its full potential. On the other side, establishing a vision that is based on unrealistic expectations will either discount the value of even creating the vision or disenfranchise stakeholders. High motivation leads to high energetic and high-performance team. Low motivation leads to low commitment. To be a visionary leader, you needs to envision and share insight all the time; to be an effective leader and see positive results, you must invest, empower, and motivate yourself, if you plan to motivate others. You need to provide opportunities for employees’ growth, continue to develop your employees and ultimately drive the business’s long-term prosperity.

Future-driven IT is highly innovative and capable: Traditional IT organizations spends a significant amount of time to “fixing the symptoms and keep the bottom line.”  The future-driven IT needs to spend a significant amount of time on strategy management and innovation. IT is no longer just the tangible hardware boxes which are heading into the commodity, the future of IT is more about the intangible information fabric with digital “SMAC” technologies interwoven into your organization. IT needs to build up the new set of core capabilities in transforming itself and business as a whole; the future-driven IT is an innovation solution provider to help organizations deliver the best-tailored products or solutions to its end customers. The future-driven IT focuses on building core business capabilities to catalyze growth and improve overall business competency. The future-driven IT can engage and align employees’ talent with the business's differentiated capabilities, and build digital IT workforces which are futuristic, flexible, and innovative, to achieve business goals with accountability at all levels.

The future-driven IT organizations need to continually fine-tune a successful structure to improve customer-centricity: Compared to the traditional organizational structure with a rigid hierarchy, the digital blurs the functional, business, and even industrial territories. In the world that has been transformed by technology, many old and powerful hierarchies became ‘commoditized.” Traditional hierarchical lines will phase out and a collective of business partners will emerge working collaboratively to set and achieve organizational goals as well as strategy. The challenge for any business is to find a successful, often the hybrid (centralized vs. decentralized, physical vs. virtual) structure that helps to empower people, enforce iterative communication, and cross-functional collaboration to deliver better business results. The goal is to build an innovative of workplace and workforce, the limited hierarchy works best in a creative environment where the free flow of ideas and their prompt implementation is a key element of success.

The future-driven IT organizations step out of the traditional IT box, to understand the business and customers better via longer time frame. The challenge is having a harmonized vision about overall IT capabilities and maturities in an IT organization. CIOs need to be transformative leaders to advocate for their organization, to bridge the gaps, to shape the culture of innovation, and to build the momentum for the non-stoppable digital paradigm shift.




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