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Strategic IT Leadership Brian L. Hawkins March 25, 2003.

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1 Strategic IT Leadership Brian L. Hawkins March 25, 2003

2 Strategic IT Leadership Like surfers, leaders must always ride the waves of change. If they get too far ahead, they will be crushed. If they fall behind, they will become irrelevant. Bolman & Deal, 1997 Reframing Organizations

3 Strategic IT Leadership The difference between: a Leader & a Manager

4 Leaders vs. Managers 1) Think longer term 2) Think about the bigger picture 3) Influence beyond their jurisdictions 4) Focus on vision, values and motivation 5) Use political skill to manage conflicts 6) Think in terms of renewal John Gardner On Leadership, 1997

5 Leadership “The vision thing” “You gotta have a dream…” But it MUST be a shared dream!

6 Vision & Reality Make whatever grand plans you will, -John Gardner, On Leadership you may be sure the unexpected or the trivial will disturb and disrupt them.

7 Be a Risk Taker! Develop a safety net for others Courage

8 Strategic IT Leadership Not a bigger stovepipe... it is about a spider-web No certification or defined body-of-knowledge A huge expansion of the role The challenge of the orchestra

9 The Role of the IT Leader Leading an orchestra

10 The Role of the IT Leader Leading an orchestra Improvising with a jazz ensemble

11 Stereotypes of the CIO Unrealistic Irresponsible Unaware of constraints Greedy Can’t justify Don’t Plan Focus on technology for its own sake Live in “never-never-land” Bad managers Want more than “fair share” Make Million $ mistakes Won’t work on business cycle

12 The CIO as seen by the CIO Chief IT strategist Evangelist / Visionary / on a “Quest” Service Provider Sure that technology is a key “answer” Part of central administration Certain of their answers Beleaguered

13 Qualifications for a CIO First and foremost... a vision! 1) Excellent communication skills 2) The ability to form alliances 3) The ability to work collaboratively 4) The ability to make hard decisions 5) The ability to manage resources 6) Deep expertise in at least one aspect of technology itself - Linda Fleit, 1999

14 Make Information an Asset Educate the other senior officers It’s about the new ways of looking at information The silos are all becoming interconnected Information based organizations

15 Become an Enabler Enabling others to achieve their goals The paradox of control Partnering without stepping on toes Forging alliances

16 Strategic IT Leadership Our inventions are wont to be pretty toys, which distract our attention from serious things. They are but improved means to an unimproved end. - Henry David Thoreau, Walden

17 It’s Not My Job! Coping with the transformational change resulting from the IT revolution is an institutional issue… NOT an individual role responsibility! It is the mutual responsibility of the entire executive team!

18 Six IT Decisions Your IT People Shouldn’t Make Ross & Weill HBR, Nov. 2002 Advice and Questions for CEO’s …exclusively!

19 Six IT Decisions Your IT People Shouldn’t Make 1.How much should we spend on IT? 2.Which processes should receive IT funds? 3.Which IT capabilities need to be company-wide? 4.How good do our IT services need to be? 5.What security/privacy risks should we accept? 6.Whom do we blame if an IT initiative fails?

20 How much should we spend on IT? Abdication to the IT folks Responding to trends Ill-defined goals Benchmarks Not focusing on the strategic

21 How much should we spend on IT? “We need to approach distance education, as we should all exotic and complex new opportunities, with great mindfulness and with our mission statements before us.” Nannerl Keohane President Duke University

22 Which processes should receive IT funds? The most critical business projects Unit responsibility Satisfying everyone a little bit Developing a backlog – frustrating all Need for campus prioritization Not license for independent action

23 Which processes should receive IT funds? “To state the obvious, an overall institutional plan should drive the information technology (IT) plan and budget decisions – whether that means increasing distributed-learning courses, making transactions from billing to registration available on the Web, or offering advising via videoconferencing…” Carol Cartwright President Kent State Univ.

24 Which IT capabilities need to be company-wide? Benefits of standardization Core infrastructure Limits the responsiveness of units Autonomy vs. efficiency Exception process & ownership Standardization requires courage!

25 How good do our IT services need to be? Service levels must be set by end users Must be defined by institutional needs Cannot be just a showcase for IT IT leadership must identify costs/options Reliability, customization, responsiveness

26 What security/privacy risks should we accept? Issues not on the table prior to Sept 11 Security vs. privacy Convenience vs. privacy Tradeoffs, costs, risk Risk management & shared decisions

27 Whom do we blame if an IT initiative fails? Failure to achieve business objectives Reflects mgmt’s failure to manage IT Defining the value accrued from an ERP Business managers must be in charge IT should be responsible for delivering systems on time and on budget

28 Whom do we blame if an IT initiative fails? “It is no longer possible for a college or university president to safely delegate all technology- related decisions to the CIO. The costs are too high, the risks are too great, and the opportunities are too significant for the president not to be personally aware or involved.” John Hitt President Univ. of Central Florida

29 IT Assessment Satisfaction Surveys Data Collection & Benchmarking Self Assessment The Fallacy of Input Measures

30 Comparative Data The EDUCAUSE Core Data Survey Necessary…but Not Sufficient

31 Assessment Teaching / Learning Research / Discovery Service / Engagement Measuring these outcomes is the Goal! Value of Investment (VOI)

32 Assessment This cannot be just an IT responsibility It must be done by the functional units It cannot occur meaningfully without the active participation of IT professionals

33 What We Need to Do! We must escape from the stereotypes We must mutually agree upon and commit to institutional goals We must assure that discussions on campus technology goals and priorities actually occur!

34 What We Need to Do! Involve each other earlier in planning & strategy Meet regularly with counterparts Speak regularly to other’s staffs Better explain the tradeoffs, costs and fears

35 What We Need to Do! Define mutually acceptable planning horizons Recognize that comfort levels with uncertainty may be strikingly different Discuss the means of evaluating the worth of a given IT investment

36 What We Cannot Do! Define tomorrow’s expectation on yesterday’s experience Play the one-up, one-down games Oversell technology Strategic IT Leadership is not a solo performance!

37 - James J. Duderstadt “A University for the 21st Century” - 2000 “… the real question is not whether higher education will be transformed, but rather how… and by whom. If the university is capable of transforming itself to respond to the needs of a culture of learning, then what is currently perceived as the challenge of change may, in fact, become the opportunity for a renaissance, an age of enlightenment in higher education for the years ahead.

38 Remember Alice!


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