CIO Values: Steven McIntosh, Senior VP And CIO, Jackson Family Enterprises

You have to understand how to apply technology to business problems and apply solutions.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

May 15, 2008

3 Min Read

Career Track

STEVEN MCINTOSHSenior VP and CIO, Jackson Family Enterprises

How long at current company? Six and a half years

Career accomplishment I'm most proud of: My tenure at Jackson Family Enterprises, home of Kendall Jackson Wine Estates. Before I came here, the average CIO tenure was 15 months to two years. I've been able to maintain consistency within the department, which gives us a high level of performance. Now we're able to establish an IT strategy that matches the business.

Most important career influencer: I had a boss, Ron Anderson, and we had a fun time consulting for city and county governments. He had a different style than mine--he was a jokester and really made customers feel at ease. He started meetings with stories and jokes, which made customers very comfortable.

Decision I wish I could do over: I would've liked to have gone back to New York after graduate school to work at a bank or investment firm instead of staying in San Francisco and going straight into IT consulting.


The next big thing for my business will be ... business analytics, enterprise geographic systems, and selling more wine directly over the Internet. We also will see more use of technology in the vineyards to track irrigation, sugar levels, field activities, etc.

Best advice for future CIOs: Be a businessperson first. You have to understand how to apply technology to business problems and apply solutions.

How I measure IT effectiveness: We measure our success on whether we hit particular project goals.

On The Job

IT budget: All told, including capital and operating budgets, about $20 million

Size of IT team: 50

Top three initiatives:

  • Enterprise content management: We have a lot of documents. We're trying to organize the information so all of it can be used effectively by the entire organization.

  • Geographic information system: We have thousands of acres of property up and down the California coast. We need a special database to provide visibility into the different properties, so we can combine information about the properties with the maps.

  • Business analytics: We're trying to use our business intelligence data to predict future events--we want to look forward to determine what we can do better.


Colleges/degrees: Engineering/applied science from Harvard; MBA in finance from Stanford

Book read recently: Retire Retirement, by Tamara Erickson, which illustrates how you never actually retire and instead remain connected.

Leisure activity: Golf

If I weren't a CIO, I'd be ... general manager of a professional baseball or basketball team.

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