CIOs Can Lead on Social Media

Ann All

Based on their growing and constantly shifting list of responsibilities, I once called CIOs the hardest-working executives in the enterprise. Yet they are relatively unsung.


Unlike their peers in the executive suite, they aren't regularly recognized by mainstream publications like Forbes and Barrons. But what about technology-geared publications? Writing on MiPro Consulting's Unfiltered blog, Jeff Ventura explains why he thinks there were no big-name mainstream CIOs on ZDNet's list of 100 technology experts to follow on Twitter. The list is heavy on pundits like Michael Arrington and Om Malik because those folks spend healthy chunks of their time promoting their social media presence, writes Ventura. For quite a few of them, social media is their job.


So this doesn't sound like a problem, in the same way many folks think that CIOs reporting to the CFO rather than to the CEO is a problem.


Still, he'd like to see more CIOs using social media to relate their technology challenges and how they were able to overcome them. I recently urged folks to be more forthcoming with their successful uses of Enterprise 2.0 technology. I'm sure people would like to hear about successes with more traditional technology as well. Twitter and other social channels can provide the same kind of information-gathering function once largely filled by attending user groups and other conferences. You can exchange ideas with peers without suffering through airport security and bad buffet breakfasts. Writes Ventura:


In terms of technology and how businesses use it, there might be no equal to CIOs speaking candidly about their challenges and solutions. CIO's aren't purely introspective creatures from a business perspective -- some simple re-voicing could do wonders for the tech conversation on Twitter.


CIOs could pave the way for their executive peers, many of whom are social media laggards as well. According to an study, few Fortune 100 CEOs have blogs, LinkedIn profiles, Facebook pages or Twitter accounts. If CIOs use these channels and gain benefits from them, perhaps they'll also be more open to allowing rank-and-file employees use them as well.

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