Futurist James Canton foresees the CIO motivating the rest of the organization, including the CEO and the board, to change.
But what's different today is the depth of complexity and the changing role of the CIO?
The need to be able to better predict the future is greater today because there'll be more fallout for companies and CIOs who don't change fast enough or, quite frankly, don't predict fast enough.
There's more pressure on CIOs since so much of a company's ability to adapt faster, and to predict and anticipate faster, is technology oriented.
So you see the CIO as the change agent.
Not just the change agent, which is somewhat an outmoded idea, but the change predictor and the change shaper.
There's been a dramatic power shift in the organization. CIOs, for all intents and purposes, have an opportunity to predict changes and to be a force for motivating the rest of the organization, including the CEO and the board, to change.
But I just don't, quite frankly, see all CIOs thinking that's their role.
Think about the changes that were not on the radar even a few years ago: green strategies and clean tech, nanotechnology, pervasive mobility and the always-on expectation of customers.
And go back to the dot-com crash. Right after that period, many CIOs would not champion new innovations for fear that it would look like they were getting behind just another new Internet thing. Those CIOs and those organizations were not ready for the next disruptions that were emerging with mobility. Now, of course, we're up against Web 2.0, we're up against Web 3.0, we're up against a lot faster agility.
But the CIOs who predicted the return of key innovation are the ones who can link up assets in their ecosystem, create efficiencies and are able to provide more value to customers. Those are the ones who have been better survivors and are ready to thrive as we move forward.