Comment: Where do you want to go?

Could it be that positioning IT management at board level has become a shibboleth for those working in the higher echelons of the industry?

Could it be that positioning IT management at board level has become a shibboleth for those working in the higher echelons of the industry?

Computer Weekly reader Chris Bee certainly believes so, describing the desire for IT representation in the boardroom as the "sacred cow of the IT department".

The arguments have undoubtedly become well-rehearsed over the years. Those in favour of the IT director taking a place at the boardroom table point to the crucial role of IT as a key business enabler, or sometimes instigator, in the modern corporation.

To achieve the proper heights, they argue, the IT director must develop an entrepreneurial flair and banish all hint of technological talk in their conversations with anyone outside the IT department.

At the other end of the scale we have the view propagated by Nicholas Carr in his (in)famous Harvard Business Review article "Why IT doesn't matter anymore". This basically sees IT as a utility, but one that poses a number of risks to the business - not least, the risk of spending too much on it.

In between lies a view of IT experts as providing crucial services and enabling business change, while not themselves being instigators of corporate strategy.

For the individual IT director, the key to peace of mind is to get a clear fix on where they are positioned within the organisation and how they can best do their job for the benefit of all. That means understanding the difference between aspiration and today's reality. Confusing the two will only lead to a sense of grievance - or at least personal frustration.

Neither is conducive to real success and progress, whether one's eyes are set on the boardroom or not.

Vote for your IT greats

Who have been the most influential people in IT in the past 40 years? The greatest organisations? The best hardware and software technologies? As part of Computer Weekly’s 40th anniversary celebrations, we are asking our readers who and what has really made a difference?

Vote now at: www.computerweekly.com/ITgreats



Read more on Data centre hardware

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

SearchCIO

SearchSecurity

SearchNetworking

SearchDataCenter

SearchDataManagement

Close