The Soft Skills for Hard Core Technical Professionals blog is maintained by Profitable Growth Partners, LLC. It provides a venue for the exchange of ideas on the topic of skill-sets that are required for today's technical professional.

Friday, March 23, 2007

IT Priorities - 2007

I was recently catching up on some reading, and was able to spend some time reviewing the results of CIO Insight’s annual survey of CIOs and their priorities. One of the things I found most interesting was the section where they asked CIOs “What are your IT organization’s three most important management priorities for 2007?” It wasn’t even a horse race. The top three priorities came through loud and clear:

(1) Improving alignment with business objectives
(2) Improving the performance and capabilities of IT management and staff
(3) Reducing IT costs

If you would have asked me same question during most of my career in IT management, I would likely have answered exactly the same. Well, maybe during 1998/1999 I might have added “recruiting staff with web skills.” But what I came to learn over all those years is that as much as I sought out better alignment of IT with the business, it was actually by investing in the skills of our staff that we were able to move the needle on alignment. Alignment is a noble goal, but until IT staff are more able to relate to, and interact with their general business counterparts, real alignment will continue to be difficult to attain. Oddly enough, when organizations begin to invest in the non-technical skills of their teams, they not only achieve better business alignment, but costs can actually be driven down as projects are delivered more effectively. So priority #2 from the list can often be the lynch pin that drives and delivers priorities #1 and #3.

No comments: