When Running IT is Like Apollo 13: A New CIO Interview Series Highlights Lessons from the Trenches of Corporate IT
Martha Heller, a columnist and public speaker on IT leadership, announced the launch of a new 1-on-1 interview series with corporate Chief Information Officers (CIOs). The interviews feature stories “from the trenches,” as told to Heller by large company CIOs, and career management advice including how one breaks “The CIO Paradox.”
Boston, MA (PRWEB) February 21, 2012
Martha Heller, contributing columnist for CIO magazine, and author of the forthcoming book, The CIO Paradox, announced the launch of a new 1-on-1 interview series with corporate Chief Information Officers (CIOs). The interviews are accessible from the web site of Heller Search Associates, her executive recruiting firm.
Wayne Shurts, CIO of SUPERVALU, a $38 billion grocery retailer, is one of the first subjects in the new series. In his interview, Shurts discusses how — with the company in the middle of a major transformation — he decided to walk away from long “lead to value” projects and focus on smaller “guerilla projects” his IT department could deliver quickly. One such project simply provides sales data on stickers that store directors affix underneath products to help them make better shelf space decisions. “My team is adding more real measurable value than at any other point in my career. When you have your back against the wall, you have to use what you have. It´s a little like Apollo 13: See what you can make with cardboard, a plastic bag, and duct tape,” he says in his interview.
Heller has interviewed thousands of CIOs since the late 1990s, going back to her time as the first online columnist for CIO magazine, and Managing Director of the CIO Executive Council, a knowledge sharing community of more than 500 corporate CIOs.
“Time and again, what I hear from CIOs is that — more than research reports and whitepapers — they value the advice and insights that come directly from their peers. They look for stories “from the trenches” and lessons learned by other CIOs because so much is riding on every decision they make. Such stories are not always easy to come by, which is why I have created this CIO Interview series,” said Heller.
Heller is quick to point out that technology projects are not the focus of the series. A large portion of each interview is dedicated to CIO career management, and the question of how one breaks The CIO Paradox. Created by Heller in collaboration with the CIO Executive Council, The CIO Paradox is set of contradictions that can prevent CIOs from succeeding in their jobs. For example:
- You are intimately involved with every facet of the business, yet you are considered separate and removed from it.
- Technology is a long-term investment, but the company thinks in quarters.
Other interviewees appearing in the series include David Harkness, CIO at $10 billion Xcel Energy, and Ted Hengst, CIO of $6 billion Harris Corporation.
About Martha Heller
Martha Heller is a widely followed expert and speaker on the role of the CIO. She is a contributing columnist at CIO magazine and CFO magazine, and her book The CIO Paradox will be published in 2012 by Bibliomotion. She is President of Heller Search Associates, a retained executive recruiting firm specializing in CIO, CTO and senior technology roles. For more information, visit http://www.hellersearch.com.
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