The challenge ahead: senior ICT managers must become business managers
It has been discussed for a long time in the CIO community: purely technical expertise is not sufficient to gain the CIO a seat at the Executive Board level. Technical expertise must be put into a business context to create traction and drive true business change. The CIO must act as a business executive with a technical background very much like his board colleagues in their respective areas. But how to become a “dual thinker” at the business – IT interface if you have grown up the ranks in the IT organisation? Senior ICT management talent able to interact effectively with the business organisation is a rare skill-set. An example is that of the enterprise architect, the single most difficult-to-recruit skill-set in corporate information management.
The response from the European CIO Association: the Executive Education Programme
The European CIO Association (“EuroCIO”) has taken the initiative and teamed up with academia to create an innovative Executive Education Programme(see www.eurocio.org/education.htm: revise this link/Peter), tailored specifically towards the needs of the CIO community and continuously innovated towards the demands of the CIOs.
A network of leading European business schools such as Henley Business School (UK), Nyenrode Business School (NL), TIAS Business School (NL), the Technical University of München(DE) and St. Gallen Business School (CH) has been established to create a unique European eco-system of executive education in Corporate Information Management. Participants in the programme’s modular coursesthus benefit from a truly European learning experience.
The EuroCIO Educational Programme consists of two discrete layers:
- Layer 1: The EuroCIO Executive MBA programme on Corporate Information Management (“Business & IT”) aims at the high-potentials, future CIOs, top-consultants, etc. striving to obtain in their career the highest responsibilities in managing ICT departments, digital transformation or innovative business projects, in general leading to a C-level position in larger organisations. The European CIO Association established two Executive MBA programs, almost equal, at Nyenrode (NL) and TU Münich/StGallen (GE), both with full MBA accreditation.
- Layer 2: Multiple EuroCIO Professional Programmes in Corporate Information Management disciplines aim at the highest IT professionals, in general reporting to the CIO. At the moent two courses are running: about strategic business & enterprise architecture and about IT security management. Expansion to other European countries is worked on. New programs might be developed, depending market or members wishes.
The European CIO Association, as demand organization, has seats in all Program Boards of all programs. Each program is regularly monitored, evaluated by the participants and is revised according needs from the CIO community.