CIOs Need To Make Sure That Their Skills And Data Centers Are Up To The Task Of Leading

by drjim on November 7, 2012

Image Credit CIOs need to have a plan for what to do with their data centers after virtualization hits

CIOs need to have a plan for what to do with their data centers after virtualization hits

Quick question: what is the #1 job of a CIO? Hmm, good question, eh? Although this should really be part of the definition of information technology, I’m pretty sure that we could sit around and debate just exactly what is the #1 job of a CIO all day; however, I’m also pretty sure that we could agree that bringing innovation into the business has to be one of the top jobs of both the CIO and the entire IT department. Now the big question is just exactly how should we go about doing this?

Are You Suffering From Having “Old” CIO Skills?

In order to help the company become more innovative, just exactly what set of skills does a CIO need to be bringing to the table? For that matter, what set of skills will they not need?

With a little luck, I think that we can all agree that some of the classic skills that CIOs have had, like the ability to prepare reports, are not skills that are going to lead the company to becoming more innovative. Instead, skills like having the ability to analyze data are going to be a critical skills and with the arrival of big data sets are only going to become more important.

Looking forward, the ability manage the IT department in order to create new mobile applications that will meet the company’s changing needs will be a critical skill for CIOs to have. Additionally, the whole reason that companies want to become more innovative is to grow the business so CIOs need to have the skills that will allow them to be able to help the company seek out new business opportunities.

What Are You Going To Do With Your Data Centers After Virtualization?

The ability to virtualize servers has swept through the field of IT and has transformed how IT departments think about their data centers. Where once upon a time, a data center was used to hold the servers that ran specific applications, now those same data centers simply hold servers that run something.

The arrival of cloud computing in all of its different forms (public, private, hybrid) will only serve to further transform your data centers. Instead of viewing them as being traditional data centers going forward, CIOs need to view them as housing the company’s private cloud resources.

This kind of thinking is going to require that the company’s main applications be rewritten in order to allow them to be run anywhere within the company’s cloud. This kind of change will spill out and impact the company’s IT equipment, databases, and middleware also.

What All Of This Means For You

Every business looks to their IT department to lead the way when it comes to evaluating new technologies that have shown up in the IT sector. New and innovative ideas can come from these types of evaluations and so the CIO needs to make sure that he or she is out in front leading the charge.

How can a CIO be innovative if they only have “old” skills with witch to work? It can be too easy to get caught up in a lot of CIO “busy work” that won’t benefit anyone. Make sure that you are working to develop the skills that will generate the greatest return for the company. At the same time, as CIO you are going to have to decide what the next step is for your data centers. Virtualization is great, but it changes the role that your data centers are going to play in the company’s IT infrastructure.

Yes, the life of a CIO is busy. However, making the time to do the proper evaluation of new technologies is a critical part of the job and is key to the importance of information technology. Do this task right, and you will have shown the entire IT department how to remind the rest of the company just how valuable IT really is.

– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World IT Department Leadership Skills™

Question For You: Do you think that tablets should be introduced into the company slowly because the technology is changing so fast?

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

Quick question: what is the #1 job of a CIO? Hmm, good question, eh? Although this should really be part of the definition of information technology, I’m pretty sure that we could sit around and debate just exactly what is the #1 job of a CIO all day; however, I’m also pretty sure that we could agree that bringing innovation into the business has to be one of the top jobs of both the CIO and the entire IT department. Now the big question is just exactly how should we go about doing this?

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