How To Cultivate High-Potential IT Leaders
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User Rank: Apprentice
11/9/2011 | 4:08:10 PM
re: How To Cultivate High-Potential IT Leaders
Thanks for the thoughtful comment. In 1992 I went to a big, offsite meeting in Orlando called by the CEO. The topic was how to get Marketing and IT to work together. I have saved the souvenir coffee table coasters from the event and used them in innumerable Marketing/IT throwdowns since. You are so correct that neither group can be successful alone but the struggle to work together seems just as difficult as ever. And now with far more ways to reach customers and the need to keep those channels refreshed so much faster than before, I donG«÷t see the strain improving. I like your three starting points. They make great sense, have been tried, and deserve another try (or two or three). The company that has the best customer understanding and innovative product design in Marketing paired cooperatively with the best IT engineering will win in the market and meet the CMO and CIO goals of having a meaningful place at the CEO table.

User Rank: Apprentice
11/8/2011 | 6:10:46 PM
re: How To Cultivate High-Potential IT Leaders
Larry, thanks for this. I worked in IT for 15 years many years ago, then got into marketing research (mainly for Tech) and see the problem from the other side. Marketing is in a similar situation as IT in many organizations, both trying to prove their value and both wanting to sit at the CEO table but often being relegated to some other table. Marketing needs IT according to recent research and IT remarkably doesn't seem ready to help. IT relationship managers (according to our research) assigned to Marketing often go there and simply help queue up the projects instead of helping with new thinking and innovation. The gap between Marketing and IT is at least as important a gap as that between IT and Sales, yet little improvement seems to be happening. You may have identified a root cause in that IT is stifled, held back and not improving. Marketing, under the same pressures will simply try IT work-arounds and likely fail since they don't know systems, nor security, etc. The solution is for both to work together at the highest levels and decide how to build their combined TOTAL value up in the organization. Then go to the CFO/CEO with a joint plan to increase the value of the organization, show them how it will be done and get the funding. Not easy, of course, but it starts with 1. working together at the CIO/CMO level, 2. getting innovative help inside and/or outside to work with the cross-function team, 3. challenge them to act as professionals and work together to achieve the greater good. Watch what happens.

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