IT: A Creative Arm of the Enterprise

By Frank Wander  |  Posted 07-16-2014 Print Email

CIOs and their IT organizations are on the defensive, their future in doubt. To remain relevant, IT must rightfully assert itself as a creative arm of the enterprise.

person using a tablet

The Future Is Not in Doubt

IT is uniquely positioned to lead. CIOs must step forward, reshape the perception of their organizations, and drive a growth and innovation agenda. Also, they must embrace shadow IT, and encourage business-led innovation with appropriate governance. They must drive change in their organization, not stop it.

What other department of the company can create a technology strategy, drive a cohesive architecture, effectively manage large initiatives, control a complex portfolio of activities, seamlessly integrate a diverse set of vendors, and direct all of the forces impacting the enterprise like mobile, social, cloud and big data? There is absolutely no reason IT should be on the defensive.

The future is not in doubt. Technology will play an ever-more prominent role. The many technology forces weighing on the enterprise must be shaped into a cohesive vision, or the end result will be a difficult-to-endure chaos.

CIOs must step up and take the leadership mantle, and in the process transform IT into a respected organization with a high creative quotient, an encompassing strategy, and the ability to drive innovation. It is theirs to lose, and, if lost, uninformed business executives will reap the very costly consequences of ungoverned IT running away in the shadows. Just wait for the bill to put that mess back together.

About the Author

Frank Wander, a former CIO, is founder and CEO of PeopleProductive (, and author of Transforming IT Culture, How to Use Social Intelligence, Human Factors and Collaboration to Create an IT Department That Outperforms (Wiley, 2013). This unique book is the very first operator’s manual for the human infrastructure, and will help you successfully transform your leadership style and your organization.

To read his previous CIO Insight article, " IT Leadership 2.0: Transform Yourself or Fade Away," click here.


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