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CIO Wisdom: Best Practices from Silicon Valley

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CIO Wisdom: Best Practices from Silicon Valley


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  • Copyright 2004
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/4"
  • Pages: 448
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-141115-2
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-141115-9

What it takes to be a truly great CIO... from the IT leaders who know best

What does it take to get to the top in IT today, stay there, and thrive? How do you realign IT to maximize business value, and become a full strategic partner in the organization's most crucial decisions? CIO Wisdom brings together answers from 20 of the world's most successful senior IT executives. Based on their extraordinary private discussions over the past five years, it covers every facet of IT leadership: planning, budgeting, sourcing, architecture, strategy, and much more. If you're an IT leader-or you intend to become one-it's the most important book you'll read this year.

  • What really works right now
  • Taking charge: Creating a 90-day tactical plan-and an intelligent long-term strategy
  • Refocusing IT on your company's core business drivers
  • Leading IT in today's rapidly evolving "extended enterprise"
  • Deciding what to outsource-and managing your outsourcing relationships
  • Implementing the ten metrics most critical to IT success
  • Setting priorities when infrastructure costs are rising and resources are declining
  • Evolving the leadership style that works best for you-and your organization
  • Coping with the incredible personal pressures of IT leadership
  • Addressing the unique challenges that face women in IT's upper echelons

The authors' profits from this book will support a scholarship program for underprivileged students planning IT careers

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Table of Contents

Foreword by Regis McKenna.

Foreword by Maynard Webb.

Foreword by Dean Lane.

1. Within and Beyond: Understanding the Role of the CIO, by Stuart Robbins and Al Pappas.

Perspective 1: The Extended Enterprise CIO. Perspective 2: Back to the Basics-What is a CIO?

2. Women CIOs, by Judy Armstrong.

Why Single Out a Particular Group of CIOs? Why Is IT Unfriendly to Women? What Is IT Losing When Women Leave the IT Workforce? What Do We Need to Change to Attract More Women into the IT Profession. Why Do Some Women Prevail and Others Do Not? What Is Different for Women CIOs in Their First 90 Days? Who Are Some of the Successful Women CIOs, and Why? The Value of Women in IT.

3. The First 90 Days, by Mark Egan.

Key Takeaways. Overview. Ninety-Day Tactical Plan. IT Organization Review. IT Strategic Plan. IT Architecture Blueprint. Management Recommendations. Pulling It All Together.

4. The Tao Perspective, by George Lin.

An Indirect but Fundamental Approach. CIO Challenges. In Closing.

5. Communications: Communication Excellence in IT Management, by Brenda J Fox.

The Problem: Us Versus Them. How to Break Down Stereotypes that Threaten Good Communication. Essential Management Practices that Produce Good Communication. What to Keep in Mind When Implementing Communication Tools and Practices. How to Make Yourself a Better Communicator. How to Know When Communication Is Good. Conclusion.

6. IT Organization, by Guy de Meester.

Challenges in Determining the Ideal IT Organization. Centralized Versus Decentralized Organizational Structure. Reflections on Critical Information Systems Functions. Decisions and Topics Impacting the Organizational Model. Final Comments on IT Organizations.

7. Governance, by Danny Maco.

The Paradox of IT. The Role of the New CIO. What Is Governance? Successful Governance. Skills to Help You Govern. Typical Governing Bodies. Considerations Related to Governing Bodies. Operational Governance. Creating a Governance Model for Your Organization. Putting a Governance Model in Place. Managing Expectations for Governance. How Much Energy Should Be Committed to Governance? Evolution of Governance. Mistaken Uses of Governance. Effect of Acquisitions on Governance. Summary.

8. Architecture, by John Dick, Holly Simmons, Maureen Vavra, and Steve Zoppi.

Are We Having Fun Yet? Overview. The Classic Architecture Approach. Enterprise Architecture Overview. Planning for an Enterprise Architecture. Component Architecture. Multitier Architecture, Layer by Layer. Developing a Strategic IT Portfolio.

9. Strategic Outsourcing, by Bharat C Poria.

Understanding Outsourcing. Elements of Outsourcing. Conclusion: Trends and Opportunities.

10. IT Workforce, by Dean Lane.

Five Basics for Retaining IT Professionals. A Can-Do Attitude Cannot Be Beat. Conclusions.

11. Strategic Planning, by Maureen Vavra and Dean Lane.

Chapter Profile. The CIO's Planning Role within the Business. Business Strategizing. Approaches to Setting Strategic Goals and Objectives. IT Planning. Steps to an IT Plan. Managing to Plan an Ongoing/Evergreen Planning. Milestones for Applications Portfolio Planning and Project Management. Setting Priorities. The Big Picture and Feedback Loop.

12. IT Infrastructure Management and Execution, by Joe Feliu.

The Operational Framework. Focus Areas in Operations. Focus Areas in Development. Focus Areas in Human Resources. A Closing Comment.

13. Budgeting, by Bob Denis, Maureen Vavra, John Dick.

Building Blocks for a Strong Budget. Relationships and Budgets. Budget Feeds: Significant Influencing Factors to Consider. Partitioning Your Budget. Ratios and Operating Metrics. A Simplified Budget Generation Process. Managing the Budget. The Budgeting Toolkit. IT Expense Distribution. Conclusions.

14. Marketing the Value of Information Technology, by Judy Armstrong and Steven Zoppi.

Chapter Overview. The Importance of IT (to Everyone). The Plan. Assessing the Value Chain. Operational Excellence: How Will They Know You Are Excellent? Walking the Talk. Marketing Advocate: The Credible Individual. Borrowing From Established Best Practices. Marketing Consistency. More Marketing Vehicles. Conclusion.

15. The Metrics of IT: Management by Measurement, by Shel Waggener and Steve Zoppi.

CFO—Credible Financial Obfuscation. CEO—Cross-Examining Opportunity. Back to Basics—Breaking the Cycle. Management by Measurement—Keep It Simple. Quality Over Quantity—Always. The Wheel Already Exists. Money Metrics—You Are What You Eat. Automate IT. The Balanced Scorecard. Service Level Agreements. Some Final (and Initial) Thoughts.

16. Ladder of Business Intelligence: A Systematic Approach to Success for Information Technology, by James E Cates.

Business Intelligence. The Ladder of Business Intelligence. Defining the Stages of the LOBI. Using The LOBI Model. Summary.

17. Communities of Practice: Continuing the Learning, by John Moran and Lee Weimer, Community of Practice Facilitators.

Overview of the CoP. The Silicon Valley CIO Community of Practice (CIO CoP). Finding a CoP.



Untitled Document

The research for this book began more than 30 years ago and is based on the experience, learning and real-world practices of more than 18 people who currently are, or have been, in the role of the Chief Information Officer (CIO). The combined knowledge, expertise and skills have been leveraged on individual chapters as well as groups of chapters to ensure practical information that can be easily understood.

The concept or idea behind this written work began about a year ago, when I had cause to reflect on all of my experiences as a CIO (both good and bad). What were my successes, failures, frustrations and accomplishments? One of my revelations was that we (the IT industry) had not communicated clearly enough what it is that we do. Quite to the contrary, many lower level IT professionals cause greater frustration by promoting the thought that they are magicians who work on black boxes.

To help bridge the chasm, I decided that a book, of CIOs, by CIOs and for CIOs was indicated. I first floated the concept past War Department 470—the supreme authority in all the land ...my wife. She normally tells me to keep my day job and get back to work, but this time she thought it was a capital idea.

I first presented my idea to several long time friends who also happen to be CIOs. I was cautiously optimistic that they would like what was then the young concept of a “CIO book”, but I did not expect the enthusiastic response that I received from my colleagues. The reception to the idea was overwhelming. In a matter of days, I had 15 stakeholders in this book. The collective brain always being better than a single unit, caused us to add and delete more topics/chapters. We also modified the definitions of some chapters and added, deleted and combined topics. Everyone signed up to write a chapter, and teams formed around certain topics that required greater attention.

It had only been a matter of weeks and this quite knowledgeable group of people had taken over the book. I was relegated to the role of providing leadership and, of course, writing my own chapter. I knew this to be an honorary position ...you try to lead a group of 15+ CIOs and push them in a direction. First there was the discovery phase that each author went through to thoroughly understand their topic and outline what would be included, and what would not.

The true leadership came from the sub-groups, like the Technical Architecture team who spent numerous hours together and with others to ensure a pure message. The collaborative effort was also demonstrated by those who wrote individual chapters like “Types of CIOs”, combining and ripping them apart before producing their final product. Importantly, where there was strengthening required, the smaller groups would combine chapters, as in Planning and Setting Priorities.

Everyone completed their assignments to their committed dates. We only had one chapter actually fall off the map, due to a physical illness. The topic being too important to ignore, saw one author writing a solid six pages and working with other authors to incorporate it into the book.

The story surrounding the book gets much more interesting. None of the authors were on a quest have their name(s) attached to the actual chapter that they wrote. This is because of the collaborative efforts associated with this book. Three people have served as “lead authors” reviewing and providing feedback on individual chapters. Many jumped in to help another author who got busy at work and might have missed a deadline. Still others have rewritten sections and incorporated them into other chapters.

To give you the essence of these authors, is to tell the story of how we decided what to do with the proceeds from the book. I was sitting next to one of the authors at our regularly scheduled monthly meetings. He suggested that we create a scholarship fund for disadvantaged students who wanted to pursue a career in Information Technology. This was, perhaps, the most satisfying part of my experience with this book since every author, without exception, was quick to endorse this idea... without question. 100% of the proceeds that any author receives will be donated to the scholarship fund that we have established.

This book has been a collaborative effort right from the beginning, when I sat down with a CIO to review a list of the top 20 topics/chapters, up to and including this forward... that I asked a different CIO to rewrite. Have no doubt that all members of the team, beginning with modifying the list of chapters, have had input the entire way, up to and including the Book Title and how the author's name would appear. CIOs more than any other executive cannot perform his/her job without being collaborative. This book was the epitome of a collaborative effort. The strength of this book is due to the ego-less collaboration of these CIOs, my colleagues, ...most importantly, my friends.


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