How to build the next generation of IT leaders

Forward-thinking CIOs are setting up their organizations for sustained success by anticipating, articulating and developing the skills IT will need at the top in the years ahead.

How to build the next generation of IT leaders

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CIOs consistently list staffing as a top priority, with a tight labor market and a skills gap challenging their ability to build IT teams.

Consider, for instance, that the 2018 Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO Survey of 3,958 IT leaders found that 65 percent say a lack of talent holds back their organizations.

CIOs certainly need to focus on having the right talent throughout their IT organizations, but experienced executives, leadership experts and management consultants say CIOs also have a responsibility to build strong leaders well-positioned for success now and in the years ahead.

“Truly transformational CIOs view themselves as business leaders and make sure they’re able to adapt to every changing business condition. And they’re looking down their chain of command to make sure their team is highly skilled, that they understand their industry and can help the business continue to change,” says Dwight Specht, vice president of data and analytics at global management consulting firm North Highland.

These transformational CIOs are doing more than short-term succession planning, Specht and other experts say. They’re articulating the broad range of skills the IT organization will need at the top, identifying which skills they have, and building plans to fill in gaps.

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