Michael Schrage

Articles by Michael Schrage

Should the CIO be blogging?

Several companies do an excellent job of integrating blogs into their communications infrastructures. Blogs at those companies become healthy platforms for collaboration as well as powerful tools for self-expression.

Do you believe in the backlog fairy?

Usefully interpreting surveys about CIOs is a bit like veterinary medicine: While the howls of animal pain reveal something is amiss, the patients can't articulate the details. You have to probe carefully to learn more even though it hurts.

IT Works: Innovation Alchemy

Columnist Michael Schrage says one of the most important things CIOs can create is the right mix of healthy environment and reliable process in order to foster innovation.

Prune IT Systems, not budgets

At a lunch late last year, the CIO of a billion-dollar division of a Fortune 500 company vented his fury about his corporate CFO. "All the guy cares about is cutting costs," he seethed. "He doesn't really care how well the systems work; he doesn't really care what it means to maintain or improve them; and he doesn't care if spending a million more this year will save 10 million next year. He just wants to show what a hard-nosed, cost-cutting bastard he is."

Ready, aim, fire!

The most cost-effective way to dramatically improve your IT organization's implementation of a new system, app or upgrade is to make sure you fire the right person. Nothing boosts morale or heightens concentration quite like the public firing of an individual who everyone knows is a persistent obstacle to discipline, collaboration, quality and ethics during an implementation.

Meet your new boss

You've been demoted. The CEO called you into his office, sat you down and told you that after a great deal of careful thought and consideration, he's decided that you will now report to the CFO. Everyone agrees this makes the most sense. IT doesn't need to report to the CEO, so IT shouldn't.

Hiding behind certification

I've been struck by the seemingly pathological need so many CIOs have for the certification of skills and accreditation of organizational performance.

What goes on behind your back

An I.T. exec who effectively outsourced himself out of a top job at a huge consumer-packaged-goods company seemed more surprised than annoyed by his old firm's digital strategy.

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