IT leaders have a lot to deal with during these transformational times, and things aren’t going to calm down any time soon. The challenges range from how to enable business value (support digital business transformation) to what to do about the constantly changing threat landscape and never ending technology vulnerabilities. Of course there’s always the unknown challenge lurking around the corner ready to sidetrack the best laid plans. The point is there is so much to sort through and gaining clarity in these noisy times can be difficult.

It would be smug of me to propose answers for all of these challenges because the answer is different for each organization – I don’t know your business. What I can do is share thoughts to help to sort through the noise and achieve great results. Below are thoughts that have allowed me to focus on the right things and block out all of the hype and misdirected, but well-intended, “assistance”.

  1. Absence of a strategy will lead you down many paths… a clear and actionable strategy provides clarity
  2. Ruthless prioritization* is essential… focus on what matters
  3. Digital business transformation is the buzz… focus on business before thinking digital
  4. Be smart about the cloud… understand the details and have an exit plan
  5. Pay attention to complexity… simplicity is the path to success (architecture helps to drive simplicity)
  6. It’s not how much gets done… it’s what gets done
  7. Focus on understanding technology… products come and go
  8. Metrics should be smartly defined… less is more
  9. Business relevance trumps technology trends
  10. Talent trumps skills

What’s the message? Surround yourself with the right talent that understands your business and technology, and ruthlessly prioritize (not micro-manage) their work based on a coherent plan. This formula will lead to great results. Doesn’t it sound simple?

Feel free to post thoughts on your approach to gain clarity and great results. Sharing these thoughts may help others.

* I can’t take credit for this one. A friend who is much smarter than I am shared their perspective on ruthless prioritization. Thanks Q!

Posted by Karl

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