Technology, while always important, has become more crucial than ever before for organizations of all sizes and industries- and it’s changing the way you do business.
Traditionally, the executive’s job has been to simply carry out the company mission. Of course there are requirements that must be met and a stewardship of dollars to maintain profitability. But ultimately, executives set their alarms for 5am and undergo morning traffic to get to work to achieve this mission, to fulfill this passion. Unfortunately, when this mission meets the fast-evolving nature of information technology and its growing influence on business operations, it presents a major problem for executives across every sector.
This is largely due to the fact that IT is no longer the sole province of the IT department. On the contrary, these tools and resources have been integrated into virtually every aspect of most companies, and the vast majority of employees depend on these solutions to conduct their work on a daily basis.
However, the simple truth of the matter is that most business executives cannot hope to master all of the various IT components that are so critical for their organizations. These technologies are extremely varied and increasingly complex, and the majority of executives would struggle to gain a complete understanding of these areas even if they were not focused primarily upon business matters.
Executives are not IT professionals, they are business leaders, and there will always be a knowledge gap between these two camps. But with the recent proliferation and advancement of IT solutions, this gap has effectively become a chasm, and this can greatly undermine the executives’ decision-making abilities.
Fortunately, these leaders don’t need an intimate understanding of IT, but a sufficient understanding of the most basic elements of their companies’ IT strategies and objectives. In particular, there are three main components: the IT network (workflow), security considerations (protection and compliance) and the issue of who will handle IT responsibilities (who needs to have the expert skill sets?).
Making the right decision concerning how the business’s IT needs will be met is a high-level task for executives. In the coming parts of “Executive Survival Guide: The Tech Chasm”, we will examine the three main components imperative to bridging the chasm and achieving the mission.