This CIO Does Get Respect -- Maybe Even Too Much? - InformationWeek

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IT Leadership // CIO Insights & Innovation
Commentary
2/22/2009
11:59 AM
Bob Evans
Bob Evans
Commentary
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This CIO Does Get Respect -- Maybe Even Too Much?

A logistics and transportation company has just named a new CIO with hands-on industry experience as well as theoretical expertise from the academic world: certainly sounds like a good choice and worthy of that respect thing some CIOs are not getting these days. But in a press release, the new hire's boss says the incoming CIO "has driven hundreds of millions of dollars to the bottom line &

A logistics and transportation company has just named a new CIO with hands-on industry experience as well as theoretical expertise from the academic world: certainly sounds like a good choice and worthy of that respect thing some CIOs are not getting these days. But in a press release, the new hire's boss says the incoming CIO "has driven hundreds of millions of dollars to the bottom line [for] all of those he has worked with." With the bar set that high, I have to ask: can CIOs get too much respect?Dr. Mani Manivannan is joining parent company CNC Holdings as VP of engineering and technology and also will serve as CIO for a CNC holding company called TransLogic Auto Carriers, which provides local and long-distance transportation services for many of the major car manufacturers, according to a recent story about Detroit-area business. And the top guy at TransLogic is apparently expecting Manivannan to deliver many pots of gold -- many big pots of gold -- in his new CIO role.

Noting Manivannan's history of driving "hundreds of millions of dollars to the bottom line" at former employers, TransLogic executive chairman Ricky N. Coley said, "We are excited to have him continue his winning streak at TransLogic. His global expertise will greatly assist us to configure our intellectual properties into systems and processes in the U.S. and abroad."

The dual roles for Manivannan, head of engineering and technology for the parent company and CIO at subsidiary TransLogic, will give him the chance to drive new approaches for not only IT systems but also the business processes and logistics systems and products across CNC's various shipping and transportation companies. For example, Manivannan will be responsible for the design and deployment of a new international shipping container, according to the report in dBusinessNews.

The story also said Manivannan has hands-on as well as academic experience with "large scale database design, IT system implementation and deployment, logistics network optimization, facilities design, materials handling, warehousing and distribution, logistics quality/KPI development, forecasting, production planning, inventory control, and total cost management."

I think Dr. Mannivannan is going to need all of that expertise plus a lot of very good luck if he's going to fulfill his boss's expectation to "continue his winning streak" of driving "hundreds of millions of dollars to the bottom line" for TransLogic and CNC. Because in the eyes of his boss, Mannivannan's now expected to transform all that respect into something like a quarter of a billion dollars.

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