Year after year, IT survey results inevitably state that one of the top priorities for the coming year will be to align IT with the business. It is as if alignment is some unattainable and mysterious process and IT leaders prefer to avoid it out of fear of failure - or perhaps out of fear of receiving more work as a result. The topic certainly gets a lot of attention and is often the source of many articles and postings - such as this one, as well as presentations at IT conferences. After the requisite Google search, I found 3,300,000 results on the topic!
CIOs are faced with ever-increasing demands to provide business value across a wide range of categories. Cost efficiencies, technological innovation, growth opportunities, and compliance/regulatory requirements are just a few of the significant areas where CIOs must execute effectively and deliver real value.
How then should CIOs position themselves for the greatest probability of success? Should they take an approach based more on planning and strategy or would they be more successful using an adaptive and nimble style of execution? It would be easy to claim a “middle of the road” position, but does that really represent a CIO’s inherent style or approach in providing business value? What if you had to choose one or the other – which would it be and why? If you are not sure, perhaps a closer look at the characteristics of each would be useful.
We have seen that the world of today has been shaped by the various revolutions witnessed over a period of time. Be it the Political revolution, the Social revolution, the Industrial revolution or the Electronic revolution we experienced a few decades back.