10 Skills CIOs Need To Survive, Thrive In 2016

CIOs need to shift perspectives and skill sets for the business transformation underway. So, what's the profile of the successful CIO in 2016?
Think Like A Marketer
No Control? No Problem.
Promote Collaboration Among Diverse Groups
Shift Your Perspective
Know Your Analytics
Learn To Let Go
Embrace Agile
Collaborate With The Chief Digital Officer
Make Friends With The Chief Marketing Officer
Be A Change Agent

Cloud services, mobile devices, and the always-on Internet have shifted the way business is done today. Not only can customers can access research at their fingertips wherever they are, but they want instant service, and if your company can't provide it, they will find another company that can in seconds.

This environment is challenging businesses to transform themselves as well as creating a new generation of CIOs. Consider GE CIO Jim Fowler delivering a keynote address at the recent AWS re:Invent, where he committed to moving most of the company's workload to the cloud. Or, think about Doug Porter, CIO of Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, leveraging analytics to help customers get improved value and quality from medical services. Or, consider Steve Curts, Chief Strategy Officer at American Express Global Business Travel, unshackling the business from legacy technology investments and building a new customer-focused infrastructure in the cloud.

All these CIOs are agents of change, and they all have certain traits in common. They made serving their customers top priority. They didn't spend all their time and effort on legacy systems. They worked closely with other members of the C-suite to facilitate change.

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"There's a new breed of CIO that is emerging," Sharyn Leaver, vice president and leader of the CIO practice at Forrester Research told InformationWeek. CIOs are now allocating more than 50% of their budgets to the business technology agenda -- technology that is all about winning, serving, and retaining customers.

"CIOs who 'get' this are having more of an influence within their organizations as a result," she said.

So, what's the profile of the successful CIO in 2016? What specific skills will this individual possess? We spoke with Leaver and with Cliff Condon, chief research officer at Forrester, to get a deeper perspective of what CIOs need to be successful both in their own organizations and in the greater market. Here's what we learned.

Once you've reviewed their guidance, tell us what you think in the comments section below. Does their recipe for success apply to you in your current position? Is your role changing? Does the company you work for "get it"?

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