Monday, December 17, 2018

The Monthly “CIO Master” Book Tuning: The CIO as Digital Modernist Dec. 2018

IT organization is like the spinal cord of the digital business which can integrate various functional abilities to bring out technology-driven business solutions.

Compared to the other executive positions, the CIO role continues to be shaken up, refined, reinvented and reenergized. The magic “I” of the CIO title sparks many imaginations. Modern CIOs need to wear different hats and play multiple roles. Regardless of which industry or the nature of the organization you are in, being a digital leader will need to master the art and science of digital leadership. Here is a set of blogs to brainstorm the CIO’s dynamic role as the digital modernist.

The CIO as Digital Modernist

Are You a Traditional CIO or a Modernist CIO Information Technology is now permeating into every corner of the business, it’s a crucial component to run a modern business. As businesses embark on the “digital Era” of computing, the landscape for all executive roles constantly change, the CIO role also continues to be reimagined and reshaped. They should keep asking themselves: What is the future of IT? How to shape a digital IT organization? What is the nature of the digital IT leadership and what is the primary role of the CIO in harnessing the IT leadership? Am I a traditional CIO or a modernist CIO?

The CIO as the Digital Modernist The modernist is a believer in or supporter of modernism, especially in the arts. Information & technology is both art and science. The digital modernist CIO is an advocate to catalyze change and lead digitalization. Many perceive engineering as an art because it involves creative thinking, personalized observation and judgment, design thinking, intuition, and innovation. To unleash the digital potential of the business, organizations need to understand that IT is not just technical or scientific, but also artistic and delightful.

The CIO as Digital Modernist II The modern IT is not equal to IT modernization, it goes a step further, becomes the change agent of the company, doing more with innovation and solving problems creatively. The CIOs are digital modernists who lead through influence, not through brute forces; who not only enforce the engineering side of IT but also stimulate the creative side of IT for reaching “the art of possible.” Here are three perspectives of CIOs as digital modernists.

The Digital CIO’s Vision, Passion, and Digitalization?
IT is like the business engine, CIOs are accountable for the critical part of the business that is constantly changing and evolving. The emergence of the CIO coincided with the birth of the PC and end-user computing. That role certainly is matured as the Internet age unfolded. Contemporary CIOs should be capable of evolving leadership skills to not only match pace with the changes in technology and the pace at which an organization can effectively manage these changes but also proactively drive changes in business transformation based on their vision, passion and leadership practices.

The Digital CIO’s Three Distinctive Roles The digital organizations are so technology-driven and information-intensive, as the matter of fact, the success of the business relies more and more on information and technology nowadays. IT organization is like the spinal cord of the digital business which can integrate various functional abilities to bring out technology-driven business solutions. A big component of IT success has to do with the definitions or scopes of the role that the CIO is playing. Because different organizations are at the different stages of business maturity life cycle, the CIO responsibilities are quite varied even with the same title or position. Generally speaking, IT leaders can no longer act just like the tactical manager to “keep the lights on” only. Here are digital CIO’s three distinctive roles for running IT as the trustful business partner and the growth engine of the organization.

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