Like the "ideal candidate" section of any high-end want ad, the full range of education, skills and experience sought in corporate CIOs is daunting. As both business and technical demands increase, the question is whether it's too much for one person.
Sometimes the things you don't know can hurt you. "If you'd asked me a few years ago, I probably would have said we're doing all right," says John Smith, IT director for the southern region of Entergy Nuclear, a subsidiary of Entergy Corp. He discovered instead that some of his fellow senior executives did not agree. "The COO and I had some tense discussions about this," he says.
In a rapid-fire succession of keynote addresses, U.S. telecommunications and networking executives last month opened Telecom Business Expo in New York City with a mix of market predictions, current issues and good old-fashioned sales pitches.