by CIO Staff

Career – From One to Watch to CIO

Oct 01, 20061 min

Can we pick a winner or what? Robert Worrall, one of the up-and-coming IT professionals named in CIO’s 2006 “Ones to Watch” (see “20 Leaders to Watch,”, became CIO at Sun Microsystems in July. Previously vice president of IT, Worrall has handled operations and application support, development, and architecture issues for Sun. He also created Sun’s IT governance department.

Just before he was promoted, Worrall told CIO’s Steff Gelston what he thinks it takes to be a successful CIO:

“It’s the long-forgotten skill of listening. I get frustrated by the fact that most IT people, including CIOs, rush to solutions generally involving technology of some sort. When in fact a good mentor of mine years ago said, ’Just set the technology aside and listen to what your business partner is really asking. And if it turns out in the final analysis that technology can help, that’s great. But that’s not your first job. Your first job is to help solve a business problem or a business situation.’”