IT leaders share their top priorities, biggest mistakes, and career dreams if they weren't a CIO.
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Executive VP and CIO, InterContinental Hotels
CAREER TRACK How long at InterContinental: Six years
Career accomplishment I'm most proud of: I've had the opportunity to be part of several large-scale system implementations; one that stands out is my first job, with an insurance company in Seattle, where I built an automated billing system on my own that's still in place. My initials are still watermarked into the system!
Biggest career influencer: Brad Boston, of Cisco, a fantastic mentor. Brad encouraged me to be particular about the challenges I took on and bold in delivering on them.
Decision I wish I could do over: I regret not venturing out on my own when I had industry-moving ideas.
ON THE JOB Size of IT team: More than 1,000 globally
Creating a new global reservation system to support business needs for 15 to 20 years.
Rewriting an in-house fleet management system that’s vital to one of the largest services we provide, helping us maximize operating cost savings and reduce downtime for our customers.
Focusing on security, including the integrity of our environment and protection of data.
Metrics used to measure success: We measure success against shareholder value, based on the Dow Jones World Hotels Index as well as a set of key performance indicators.
VISION The next big thing for my industry will be ... variations of mobile computing. It's how people manage their lives already and isn't slowing down. We need to listen to our consumers,and make sense of that information, then use it to drive our business.
One thing I'm looking to do better:Technology should be simple and virtually invisible to our users with real-time data at their fingertips, regardless of device type.
Lesson learned from the recession: Keep pushing to make technology investments even in down times. Innovate, innovate, innovate!
Kids and technology: My wife, Jody, and I have three daughters. We didn't directly steer them toward tech careers, but they're naturally gravitating that way by immersion--technology is everywhere. One of my daughters won't eat in a restaurant without first checking out the Yelp ratings. They're up to speed--at times ahead of me--in regard to mobile technology and are examples of our next-generation hotel guests and owners, so I'd better pay attention.
PERSONAL Leisure activities: Skateboarding, travel, history
Favorite pro team coach: Vince Lombardi
Tech vendor CEO I respect the most: Scott McNealy of Sun Business
Pet Peeve: Lack of timely decision making
If I weren't a CIO, I'd be ... a pilot, computer science teacher, or pro baseball player
The Business of Going DigitalDigital business isn't about changing code; it's about changing what legacy sales, distribution, customer service, and product groups do in the new digital age. It's about bringing big data analytics, mobile, social, marketing automation, cloud computing, and the app economy together to launch new products and services. We're seeing new titles in this digital revolution, new responsibilities, new business models, and major shifts in technology spending.
InformationWeek Must Reads Oct. 21, 2014InformationWeek's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of digital strategy. Learn why you should learn to embrace DevOps, how to avoid roadblocks for digital projects, what the five steps to API management are, and more.