Changing role of the Chief Information Officer

The CIO role has changed with an increased focus on business change innovation.

A CIO in a modern organisation is required to possess business skills and the ability to relate to the organisation as a whole, as opposed to being a technological expert with limited functional business expertise.

Read the article about the changing role of the CIO from the Course Director, Rob Lambert.

If you want to know more information about the Cranfield IT Leadership Programme and learn how it will help you become a more effective IT Leader, click here.

If this programme is not suitable for you, but you have a colleague who you think would benefit from it, we kindly ask you to pass this email on.

For more information call + 44 (0) 1234 754498 or email, quoting reference CIA820.

What’s Your Influencing Style?


Effective leadership today relies more than ever on influencing others — impacting their ideas, opinions, and actions. While influence has always been a valuable managerial skill, today’s highly collaborative organizations make it essential. Consider how often you have to influence people who don’t even report to you in order to accomplish your objectives. Success depends on your ability to effectively influence both your direct reports and the people over whom you have no direct authority.

Have you ever thought about how you influence others? The tactics you use? We are all aware that people use different influencing tactics, but did you realize that we each naturally default to the same tactics every time? Or that the tactics we default to are also the ones to which we are most receptive when being influenced?

It is these preferred tactics that define our influencing style. Analyzing the different influencing tactics, researchers have identified up to nine primary influencing tactics. In our quest to further understand personal influencing styles, we did additional research to build on the existing knowledge base. From our research, we’ve identified five distinct influencing styles: rationalizing, asserting, negotiating, inspiring, and bridging.

You may have an idea what your style is just from hearing these labels, but the most accurate way to identify your style is with an influence style indicator — a self-scoring assessment that classifies your style based on answers to questions about preferred influencing tactics. But even without the indicator, here are some questions you can ask yourself to begin to understand your style:

  • Rationalizing: Do you use logic, facts, and reasoning to present your ideas? Do you leverage your facts, logic, expertise, and experience to persuade others?
  • Asserting: Do you rely on your personal confidence, rules, law, and authority to influence others? Do you insist that your ideas are heard and considered, even when others disagree? Do you challenge the ideas of others when they don’t agree with yours? Do you debate with or pressure others to get them to see your point of view?
  • Negotiating: Do you look for compromises and make concessions in order to reach an outcome that satisfies your greater interest? Do you make tradeoffs and exchanges in order to meet your larger interests? If necessary, will you delay the discussion until a more opportune time?
  • Inspiring: Do you encourage others toward your position by communicating a sense of shared mission and exciting possibility? Do you use inspirational appeals, stories, and metaphors to encourage a shared sense of purpose?
  • Bridging: Do you attempt to influence outcomes by uniting or connecting with others? Do you rely on reciprocity, engaging superior support, consultation, building coalitions, and using personal relationships to get people to agree with your position?

While answering these questions, take your style a step further. How often does it work for you? Are you more successful with certain types of people? Have you ever wondered why? Since there are five different influencing styles, using only your preferred style has the potential to undermine your influence with as many as four out of five people.

Gaining awareness about our own influencing style and those of others is especially critical in light of today’s fast-paced and stressful work environments, and here’s why: When we are operating unconsciously out of a preference (our style) and not seeing the results we expect, we actually have the tendency to intensify our preferred behavior — even when it’s not working!

If your individual success depends on gaining the cooperation of people over whom you have no direct authority, this should concern you. The way to begin to increase your odds of influencing more people is to learn to recognize and use each of the five styles.

Becoming aware that there are influencing styles other than yours is a good start. To further increase your influence, you must learn what each style sounds like when it’s being used effectively and ineffectively. Gaining this awareness will help you recognize when the style you’re using isn’t working and how to determine one that will.

What’s your influencing style? And what are you going to do about it?

Reprinted from Harvard Business Review (HBR).


Not a Cost Center, IT is a Differentiator

Many organisations are reviewing the role of IT particularly in the case of business-led transformation programmes and initiatives. As more people across an organisation become more technology savvy, IT can no longer remain a cost centre , worse, a hindrance to the business.

“Treating IT as a cost center is an incorrect thinking and a very wrong business model.” Read the following excellent article and feel free to share your thoughts with me on this topic.

Not a Cost Center, IT is a Differentiator.

(original article by Chiranjoy Das is IT Director at Rand McNally)

Four Keys to Effective ‘Next-Generation’ Security


Next-generation firewalls typically combine the ability to identify and control application use with classic firewall functions. However, there is wide variance in what ‘next-generation’ really encompasses. This paper identifies four crucial components that many deem elementary to true next-generation security technology and that are required for effective protection from today’s advanced threats.

To read this white paper, click here and follow instructions to register & download.

Office 365 SharePoint Online: what does it mean to my organisation as a CIO?


The goal of this white paper is to clarify the disjointed and sometimes inconsistent information about Microsoft Office 365–including its benefits, challenges, costs, and service level agreements (SLAs) – and address the business considerations for migrating to Office 365 SharePoint Online.

To read the white paper, click here and register.

IT’s most wanted: Mainframe programmers


Original article by Paul Kril

Before tablets, smartphones, and PCs became prominent, “big iron” mainframes led down the path to computing, becoming a staple of enterprise business worldwide several decades ago. Rather than going the way of the dinosaur as PCs and the client/server model emerged, mainframes remain stalwarts in heavy-duty transactional applications. “The mainframe is alive and well and still powers the global economy,” says Dayton Semerjian, general manager for mainframes at CA Technologies, which focuses on mainframe technologies. He notes that 80 percent of the Fortune 500 still use them.

An IT Managers Guide to Managing Personal Devices in the Enterprise

Developing a strategy for managing and securing employees’ personally owned mobile devices is now a necessity. iPhone is joining BlackBerry, Symbian and Windows Mobile smartphones in the workplace. And their numbers are only going to increase.

Regardless of whether corporate policy allows mobile devices to access the corporate network, workers will continue to bring them into the office.

Read this whitepaper now and learn how to find just the right balance—maintaining the integrity and security of the network while allowing easy access to the critical applications will give organizations a competitive advantage in the coming years.