IT Leaders

World Leading IT management courses

Corporate leadership is our term for the top level IT leadership skills that actually influence the future success of the business. It includes a number of top level leadership topics, including business strategy, change leadership and developing culture.

Research shows that aligning IT to the business has also been one of the top 3 priorities for CIOs for the last fifteen or so years. Which is interesting, as it can mean very different things to different managers. In this module, we look at the different components of alignment – process alignment, aligning strategy, projects and operations to the business, as well as alignment mechanisms, such as governance.

Module 5 therefore focuses on the role of senior IT leaders at this top level. It is based on research and interviews with CIOs and technology leaders from around the world.

We also look at how senior IT managers can bring about significant top level change, with some guidelines for managing effective campaigns. The module concludes with a summarized view of the four vital components which need to be mastered for a successful career in IT leadership.

To find out more about the location and dates for courses near you, click on the link for your region.

UK & Europe
US, Canada & South America

UAE, Middle East & Africa
Singapore, Malaysia and Asia

The module on Corporate leadership covers the following topics:

Corporate leadership

  • The changing role of the CIO
  • Skills for the new Chief Digital Officer
  • The responsibilities of IT corporate leadership
  • A (video) role model for corporate IT leadership

IT to business alignment — reality

Our IT to business alignment model is a proven process for delivering business results and enhancing the perception of IT

  • A process model for IT to business alignment
  • Alignment through good governance
  • Technology governance structures
  • Using governance to improve KPI results
  • Case examples of governance models

IT to business alignment — perception

  • Alignment through people
  • Managing and enhancing IT perception
  • The importance of IT’s brand
  • Aligning reality and perception
  • Bringing it all together — a business alignment game

Course close

  • An action list for the future
  • IT Leaders network

To find out more about the location and dates for courses near you, click on the link for your region.

UK & Europe
US, Canada & South America

UAE, Middle East & Africa
Singapore, Malaysia and Asia

Corporate leadership – the new role of the CIO

Corporate leadership is the skill set required by the CIO working at the highest level in an organization. It is about the CIO influencing and changing the thinking of the top-level executive, molding its business strategy in line with the technology capability that the organization currently has and could have in the future. Corporate leadership is the transition the CIO makes, when he or she starts to guide the business, rather than being told what to do. Key roles for the corporate IT leader, therefore, include:

  1. A player in the business, no longer a spectator; the corporate IT is fully involved with key top-level issues, guiding the organization in all areas
  2. The leader of IT governance, aligning IT results with the priorities of the business
  3. The champion of IT’s perception, promoting the culture of professionalism, responsiveness, and easy-to-use systems
  4. The guardian of process integration, data integrity, and system security, making sure business stakeholders do not unilaterally take on solutions that damage end-to-end process integrity
  5. Creator of a world-class IT organization

Much has been written over the years about the role of the CIO. Dr. Robina Chatham, who co-runs the Excellent IT Leadership course, did some research a few years ago on the changing role of the CIO. Those who do not look after the new priorities and welfare of the business may disappear. But, CIOs are seated firmly at the center of an organization and see everything. They have a better view of the overall end-to-end functioning of the business than anyone else, including the CEO. All the interactions between departments, all the handoffs between processes, all data transactions are firmly in the line of sight of the CIO. When it comes to integrating the processes of the organization, the CIO is the orchestra leader.

Still, things are not quite as simple as they seem. Even though the role of the CIO is as important as ever, it does require some new skills. In the days of mainframes, the IT department was the only game in town. Systems, particularly for large organizations, were written in house. The IT department could be quite autocratic and arrogant (and usually was), insisting on particular solutions because they met the often arbitrary standards of the department. Things progressed with off-the-shelf systems, but IT still had to be involved to install the software because they had the keys of the data center. But then things moved on again. A bit like the privatization of PTTs around the world, IT suddenly found that they weren’t the only game in town. Software as a service (SaaS) gave business users leverage, a weapon, if you like, to choose the solution that best fit their needs, rather than the one that conformed closest to IT standards.

The new CIO needs to be at the heart of all technical selections. Ian Cox in his book Disrupt IT suggests that as part of this role, the CIO moves toward being a services broker, rather than a services provider. Authority and the privilege of position are no longer sufficient for the CIO to retain authority. The new CIO needs to be a salesperson, a diplomat, and a pioneer—in short, the champion of IT.

  • Request a complementary download of the chapter on "IT Corporate Leadership" from the course book "Excellent IT Leadership" by David McKean, published 2014.

  • Feel free to ask us if you have an IT management question (training or non-training related). We have a large trusted private network of over over 800 IT managers we can call on to help.

  • If you would like to put a business case together for one of our courses, contact us for one of our templates. You will be impressed by the range of benefits our courses offer.