Blog Post

Closing the Digital Leadership Gap

Digital leaders share three common attributes.

Digital leaders more willing to take risks

  1. Leadership: In addition to having a formal digital strategy, digital leaders are much more likely to have the CEO leading their digital transformation. But CEOs don’t work in a vacuum; two-thirds of respondents view their CIO as critical to the success of their digital transformation as well.
  2. Data & analytics: Digital leaders use data and analytics to a much greater degree – both to understand what customers want and to improve operations and forecasting.
  3. Open to taking risk: Innovation, invention and change all involve risk, and digital leaders are significantly more open to taking risks in pursuit of new digital business opportunities than are hybrids and non-digitals. And they build this into their culture.

Blog Post

The Digital Leadership Gap

New research reveals an alarming reality. Digital disruption is upon us, yet a significant percentage of organizations are doing nothing to increase their digital abilities.

Digital Disruption Is Imminent

Eighty percent of nearly 800 business leaders surveyed by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services say their industry will be disrupted by digital trends, and most of those said their industry has either passed the tipping point of disruption (28%) or will by 2020 (56%). However, nearly a quarter of respondents to the Microsoft-sponsored research have done little or nothing to become more digital.

Blog Post

Moving Legacy Systems to the Cloud

It is becoming increasingly common to hear CIOs say that any new applications their enterprises adopt should be cloud-based, with SaaS as the first option (will an existing service fill your needs?), and with custom-developed applications written to be cloud native. But what about the many legacy systems already running in your organization? After you've done an initial triage (see my previous post), large enterprises are left with significant portfolios of important and value-adding systems. According to a Computerworld interview with Stephen Orban, head of enterprise strategy at Amazon Web Services (AWS), "now that major enterprises have gotten their feet wet with smaller cloud projects, they're beginning to focus on migrating large, critical legacy workloads."

So here's my take on how to approach this.

Blog Post

An Application-Centric Approach for Moving to the Cloud

Organizations often fall into new technologies haphazardly. Different groups discover new ways of working that better meet their needs, and they go for it. Eventually, CIOs find themselves with something of a jumble to manage.

Cloud is a particularly extreme example of this, as cloud services can be quite easy to sign onto. There are certainly categories of cloud services that CIOs don't need to control -- things that are opportunistic, department-specific and that don't need to link into core systems or data. As long as the acquiring business people understand and abide by some basic guidelines (mainly having to do with security), let a thousand flowers bloom.

However, when an organization starts to look to cloud for its enterprise IT needs, that's a very different story.

Blog Post

Steve Wozniak Calls for Chief Disruption Officer

I had the pleasure of interviewing Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak onstage at the recent FISConnect conference. He told the audience of 1300 financial services leaders that every company today needs a chief disruption officer -- someone with a personal passion for a new way of doing things -- and that person should not report to the CEO.