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CIO Values: Bob Lento, President, Information Management, Convergys

Up close with Bob Lento, president of information management at Convergys.
Career Track

Bob Lento, President, Information Management, Convergys

Bob Lento
President, Information Management, Convergys
How long at Convergys: Nine years

Career accomplishment you're most proud of: I have enjoyed the people side of my job the most. My most memorable and enjoyable times have been watching a team or an employee grow and become more productive and effective than they would ever have believed they could.

Most important career influencers: Having started my career as an entrepreneur was easily the most important career influencer. I quickly learned the merits of cash flow and how technology can create or constrain it. I also learned how to think about technology starting from the perspective of the market and customer.

Major decision you wish you could do over: As a successful entrepreneur I tried to expand by making a risky acquisition that turned out to be a very big mistake. If I were to do it over, I would have a much tighter plan for success and negotiate more effective critical success items up front.

On The Job

Size of IT team: 2,500+

Three top initiatives for this year:

  • Improve governance to include security (ISO 17779), portfolio management, and ITIL process control.
  • Transform and redesign infrastructure to improve agility, scale, and availability, as well as overall TCO.
  • Design the next generation of our integrated technology and delivery platform; this includes componentizing (SOA), virtualization, and real-time analytics capability.

How you measure IT: We measure IT effectiveness as a portfolio of assets across several categories, including financial, operational, and talent. Within each of these categories are four to six key metrics that are supported by performance indicators, each managed within a statistical process control model.

Vision
The next big thing for my business will be ... maximizing the lifetime value of customers. This trend is creating demand for rich analytics. This analytical information needs to be assembled and presented via an integrated set of communication channels in a manner that best meets the needs of the interaction with a specific customer. This trend will require IT to manage itself from the outside in, as opposed to the traditional inside-out model.

Best piece of advice for future CIOs: Gain a deep understanding of the business you support.

Personal
Colleges/degrees: State University of New York at Albany, BA in management and economics with a concentration in computer science

Leisure activity: Playing golf

Favorite sport or leisure activity: Soccer and the Boston Red Sox

Best book read recently: The Ultimate Question by Fred Reichheld

If I weren't a CIO I would be ... a general manager

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