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Even if you don’t believe that summer is primarily a season for “beach books,” you still might choose something a little lighter or less business-oriented than Confessions of A Successful CIO if you’re planning to enjoy some downtime before September.

But that’s okay, because the authors of the book, Dan Roberts and Brian P. Watson, have created an infographic based on what they learned by profiling a series of IT leaders over the course of their research. Though Confessions of a Successful CIO: How The Best CIOs Tackle Their Biggest Challenges was released about a year ago, this is a good reminder that it’s worth a careful read.

None of the traits listed below seem particularly unusual. What’s unusual is when you find a technology executive who manages to demonstrate all of them at once. As a result, I’d suggest using this infographic as less of a benchmark and more of a self-assessment tool. Would the senior leadership team see you as self-aware, decisive, and results-oriented? What about the rest of the IT department?

Some of these traits may also be a bigger priority based on what’s going on in a company. For example, those working in industries that are undergoing disruption by digital processes might need to focus on their sense of anticipation. In other cases, shareholder pressure to reduce costs may require a CIO to “bet the farm” on cloud computing or other approaches to change the way they spend on IT.

Once you’ve gone through his exercise, think about what’s missing from this list. Does this really cover it all, and are there traits that might speak more specifically to CIOs than other business leaders? It’s not too early to help the authors of Confessions of A Successful CIO plan their next edition.



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