Paul Heard has been leading IT initiatives for more than 20 years, but nothing he’s experienced before matches the pace of change, organizational pressures, and uncertainty that CIOs have faced over the past year.
“The pandemic has changed the dynamics of the organization,” says Heard, CIO at Zuora, a subscription management platform. “All the best practices that have been engrained into IT leaders about simplification and cost reduction is almost contrary to helping the organization make rapid change.”
This rapid change and uncertainty have also led some CIOs into making leadership and strategy missteps that undermine their own success, sometimes without even realizing it. The opportunities for forward-looking tech executives are vast, as are the risks for those who fall into self-sabotaging behaviors, according to consulting and advisory firm Deloitte.
“This was an inflection point to step up to a bigger and broader role,” says Khalid Kark, US CIO program research leader at Deloitte. If CIOs don’t answer the leadership call and adjust their behaviors, “they cemented their place as more of a function leader and less of a business leader.”
Tech leaders and industry advisors identify seven ways that CIOs can sabotage their own success in a post-COVID world, and how to avoid them.