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Straight to the Top: CIO Leadership in a Mobile, Social, and Cloud-based World, 2nd Edition by Gregory S. Smith

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CHAPTER 5

Today's CIO

The Teacher to the C-Suite

The way to gain a good reputation, is to endeavor to be what you desire to appear.

—Socrates1

CIOs today are the primary educators of all things IT for the C-suite. The technology trends that affect organizations today are being discussed in boardrooms, at watercoolers, and in offices throughout the organization, not just in the IT department. Because of cloud computing, social media, and the consumerization of IT, business professionals no longer are beholden to IT to turn up a new service, launch a new social media feed, or connect a personal device to the institution's systems, most commonly e-mail and messaging.

As a result, there are many different interpretations of the complexity and ease of implementation regarding many of the technology trends changing the landscape across the globe today. CIOs must be at the forefront and engage in meaningful conversations with the appropriate professionals, from business and office professionals to the C-suite to the boardroom, so that decision makers have accurate information about the ease of turning up a new service as well as the risks, the integration requirements, the support costs, and the security implications.

CIOs today must be the teachers to the C-suite. In addition to fulfilling our day jobs, we've evolved to become executive educators—and just in time, before half of our budgets are moved outside IT by 2020. We must become better influencers of technology strategy, spending, ...

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