Brian Gillooly

Profile of Brian Gillooly

Vice President, Event Content & Strategy, UBM Tech
News & Commentary Posts: 35

Brian Gillooly has spent the past 28 years establishing a trusted and significant presence in the business technology community. One of the most recognized personalities in IT media, Brian has built valuable relationships with the most influential practitioners in the technology industry. He counts among his closest contacts the CIOs of a range of organizations – from Fortune 50 companies to small businesses.

As the Vice President of Event Content and Strategy for UBM Tech, Brian is responsible for developing a vision that provides both the audience and the client with clarity and insight into today's most challenging business technology issues.

Previously, as Editor-in-Chief of Optimize and Editor-in-Chief of InformationWeek events, Brian not only engaged the people who helped shape the direction of business technology – notables like Jack Welch, Rob Carter, Malcolm Gladwell, and Michael Dell – but also shared trusted opinions and ideas through his CIO Nation blog and weekly columns. He has offered hands-on insight through presentations at numerous live events and one-on-one meetings.

In his career in generating event content, moderating discussions, and giving presentations, Brian has developed a unique rapport with his audiences by eschewing the staid lecture style, and establishing a comfortable, often fun, always informative approach.

Articles by Brian Gillooly

CIO Gregor Bailar Responds: It's Time To Give Back

Just heard back from outgoing Capital One CIO Gregor Bailar, who's departure I wrote about below and promised a response from the horse's mouth. Capital One, you may know, was the top company in the InformationWeek 500 list two years ago. Check out the last paragraph in Gregor's response about his insight into the future role of the CIO in this industry -- very interesting and right in l

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CIO Dossier: Ben Holder, Unifi

Challenge: Add even more complexity to an already complex IT role by taking on telecom cost-reduction project. Solution: A call to arms, CIO Nation! Ben?s got his own ideas but let's get him some additional CIO input. Ben Holder, CIO of Unifi, a textile manufacturer located in Greensboro, N.C., is in the discovery phase of overhauling the telecom bill-paying and management systems at the company. Not traditionally an IT operation at many companies, telecom is yet another part of the business wh

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More On The Value of Younger IT Folks

Following on the previous entry about BNSF's legacy migration, here's a reader's post from back in February on Chris Anderson's Long Tail blog that underscores the shift in the hierarchy of value within IT. The CIO doesn't always have the best answers, there isn't necessarily a direct correlation between age/experience and intelligence/talent, and it's a CIO like Jeff Campbell at BNSF who recognizes that that'll be the greatest asset to their company moving forward...

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CIO Dossier: Jeff Campbell, BNSF Railway

Challenge: Convert bloated, NATURAL-based, legacy transportation-support system to Web-based front end without breaking the bank or working through the decade Solution: Hand it off to a couple of 20-something brainiacs who did it in several weeks for one-fifth the cost. For this week?s CIO Nation Dossier, I spoke with BNSF Railway CIO Jeff Campbell about a project that blew my hair back. For years, BNSF had been pondering how to modernize its legacy transportation-support system and give it an

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I Wish More CIOs Were Like This...

6/6/2007 least when it comes to candor. An online letter recently sent to US Airways frequent flyers explaining some of the IT-related problems customers have been experiencing since the merger with America West is chock-full of frank mea culpas that you don't see coming from many businesses these days, much less a major airline. It's clear in the letter that frustration over problems in integrating the two airlines' reservation systems is percolating, as CIO Joe Beery says he'd like "to be buried

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Phoenix CIO Breakfast Is Set For July 31

I couldn't book something in Death Valley on July 31, so I had to settle for the cooler climes of Phoenix -- but if you're a CIO from the greater Phoenix area (or happen to be visiting that day), I invite you to join me and up to eight CIOs for the first in this season's series of informal CIO Nation Breakfasts.

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CIO Gregor Bailar Leaving Capital One

Capital One said today its CIO, Gregor Bailar, is stepping down Sept. 1 to pursue philanthropic interests. Bailar was at the helm of the company's IT department when InformationWeek named Capital One the no. 1 company in the presitgious InformationWeek 500 list in 2005. For those who want to make hay about the shortening tenure of the CIO, even among the good ones, think again... (read on after viewing the video by clicking "Continue reading..." below) To see Bailar speaking on agile programmin

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Some CIOs Taking Budgeting Precautions For Possible Downturn

OK, so two that I'm aware of... But my momma once said that it only takes two determined people to botch everyone else's best-laid plans. Of course, she was saying this to my little brother and me while whupping our asses for spilling paint all over the garage. But there are two companies (one in retail, one in financial services) that are sufficiently worried about a downturn in the market (the word they used was "recession") that the CEOs have asked their CIOs to prepare a "plan B" budget fo

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Newspaper Reporting Being Outsourced To India

Farewell, Nation, this may be my last blog post. Some in the IT community, particularly those whose jobs had been displaced or were about to be displaced by Indian outsourcers, said I'd get my comeuppance after I wrote a column a few years ago about my sister-in-law potentially losing her job overseas. It seems my turn on the unemployement line may come sooner than I think as journalism jobs are now being sent to Indi

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Frequent Traveler Fights Back!

This has probably happened to a fair number of you frequent travelers: you're being helped at a hotel registration desk, when the phone behind the counter rings. You know what inevitably happens... Yep, the person serving you picks up the phone to deal with the call-in customer instead. Well, last night, after I got stuck in Dallas on my return home from the Software 2007 show and was put up at a local hotel chain, this happened to me. Here's what I decided to do...

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Too Much Innovation?

Is there such a thing as too much innovation? Yes, say CIOs at the Software 2007 conference. Well, that's not entirely true -- it's not a matter of too much innovation but, how it scales...

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The Real Value of Web Services

Now on stage at the Software 2007 Conference are CIOs from four large companies -- Fedex, Unilever, Disney, and Motorola. Rob Carter, CIO of Fedex, just said that by using Web services, Fedex is able to transform the whole paradigm of how and why customers use Web sites. Rather than relating to Web sites as "desinations" where users "go somewhere to do something," Fedex is using Web services to create "connections," where customers can embed features and technologies in their own applications an

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CIOs, Your Vendors Are Avoiding You!

I'm sitting in ballroom A at the Santa Clara Convention Center for Software 2007, watching Marc Benioff walk through a product demo (when are software CEOs who keynote industry events going to resist the temptation to put an audience to sleep with a demo and instead talk about compelling issues like overhauling restrictive maintenance contracts, promoting customer-driven innovation, and the like?). Earlier today I moderated a panel that included Dennis Moore, head of emerging technologies at SAP

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The Future of Software - You Decide

Hey, Nation, we're looking for help on ideas that would help improve the state of enterprise and desktop software. We're polling our readers, but also would love for additional help through this blog. So here's the question, and please post your answers below: As you look at the future of software, what ideal (but realistic) feature or features would you like to see built into either an enterprise or desktop application?

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Why Green Computing Now Matters To CIOs

I spoke this morning with Ned Renzi, a partner in Pittsburgh-based VC Birchmere Ventures, and he's the first investor I've talked to about the whole "green" computing phenomenon who's been able to capture why some CIOs are starting to pay attention to the concept, and why all should start thinking about it soon. And the reason isn't solely based on an inconvenient truth...

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Phoenix CIO Breakfast Taking Shape

Phoenix, New York City, and Washington are shaping up to be the first of the cities in the CIO Nation "CIO Breakfasts" (check my blog of April 2 for more info on how you can participate). If you're a CIO in any of these cities and are interested in attending, please let me know (post a response here or e-mail me at These are no-obligation opportunities to simply gather with your peers, exchange ideas and best practices, and of course get a free omelette. The Phoenix timeframe

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A CIO Who Understands Enterprise 2.0

I just got off the phone with a retail CIO -- someone who really understands how to make Web 2.0 technologies work in the enterprise -- who told me how they're scrapping a blog approach for franchise updates and going instead with a wiki/RSS combination that is catching fire. He asked for anonymity because he wants to be selective about who knows what they're working on, but if you're interested in connecting with this CIO, post a response here or shoot me an e-mail at and I'll

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Sneak Peek at 'Defining the CIO' Research

Well, Nation, we've just received the results of our fifth annual "Defining the CIO" research, a survey of 575 business and IT professionals about the evolving role of the CIO in business. And I'm happy to report, given some of my recent postings deriding recent third-party reports supposedly chronicling the demise or decline in influence of the CIO, that our research refutes just about every aspect of those other studies and media coverage...

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The Two-Headed 'Monster'?

Well, Nation, you figured it had to happen at some point, but there's a strong possibility you'll see two powerhouses in the outsourcing business teaming up in the not too distant future -- and when they do, I believe you'll see even the most stubborn outsourcing naysayers, those who cringe at the words "free market," finally coming around to accept the concept of a borderless enterprise.

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CIOs Wanted For Important Software Survey

My good friend M.R. Rangaswami, founder of the Sand Hill Group and head of the upcoming Software 2007 conference, is partnering with McKinsey on an interesting survey on software usage trends and innovation. I encourage you to participate. I've negotiating with M.R. to get members of the "CIO Nation" who link to the survey from here a free copy of the finished report. Also, M.R. has extended complimentary registration to the CIO

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Join Me For Regional CIO Breakfasts

I've stayed in touch with a great many of you through informal breakfasts and lunches I've held throughout the country with a half-dozen or so CIOs at a time. I'm putting together a schedule of more breakfasts for the spring and summer, and I hope to meet you for some great conversation and networking among your peers. This season's theme: "CIO 2.0." Even though we try not to structure the conversations too much, the next-generation of the CIO in the business seems to be on everyone's radar. So,

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Beating A Very Dead Horse

More data to support my side of the debate about the relevance of CIOs (Optimize's own research and my conversations with CIOs themselves indicates CIOs are gaining in influence and relevance, not risking losing it). This comes from a recently release study from KPMG and Harvey Nash, as quoted at

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CIO: Starts with 'Innovation'

Just got off the phone with the CIO of an East Coast-based $750 million retailer who called to follow up on a recent conversation (the other part of the conversation was off the record, so I need to protect his identity here). We got to talking about my first blog posting about the debate over the relevance of the CIO. My take: it's actually on the increase. "I couldn't agree more," he said. "Yes, [as a CIO] I need to focus on cutting costs, but we [CIOs] haven't lost one step on

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Welcome to the CIO Nation!

Welcome to CIO Nation, the motherland for the leaders of the free world (of technology). This is a blog of the CIOs, by the CIOs, and for the CIOs, and in it, dear citizens, you?ll get nothing but inside info on what your colleagues and peers are doing to address the challenges and opportunities affecting your role...

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