Top tips to help CIOs adjust to a new CEO
- 30 April, 2013 22:00
If you are wondering how to adjust to a new CEO, here are few pointers from executive adviser David Brookmire.
Always remember that a new CEO will have an explicit and implicit agenda for change.
In their first 100 days, be proactive in developing a strong relationship with them to learn the new agenda and find ways to help them succeed. CEOs seek information to formulate their plans.
Contact the CEO ahead of their official start date to provide your IT strategy and other relevant information that can help them understand IT's contribution. Once the new chief starts, develop your relationship by looking for chances to spend time together, such as traveling, or attending business meetings or customer presentations.
Sometimes you may disagree with the CEO's decisions if you feel the business will be negatively impacted. CEOs rarely have senior leaders disagree with them, but showing you have the courage and expertise to tactfully challenge the popular point of view can earn you respect.
Choose the right time and place to express your opposition, however. Take care to pick the right issues, venues and approaches when voicing a contrary opinion, emphasizing that you are behind the CEO's new direction.
Never be passive in developing a relationship with the new CEO. Speak up about opportunities for business growth and communicate the business impact of the IT function.
Show initiative in positioning yourself as a trusted adviser on the CEO's agenda. Some CEOs are uncomfortable with technology and may view IT as a support function rather than a strategic ally. To maximize your influence, never use IT jargon. Talk about business concerns first, then demonstrate how IT can enable growth.
David Brookmire is an executive adviser, researcher and author. Contact him through www.cpstrat.com.
Related: You have a new CEO. Now what?
When a new CEO arrives part way through your CIO tenure, expect — and prepare for — three potential changes.