CIO Resume: Focus on Transformational Leadership

Susan Hall

All that cost-cutting you've done of late? Focusing your resume on that is so last year, according to a article that asked executive search professionals what the CIO resume of 2011 should look like.


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The article calls that "doing more with less" mantra "still compelling," but the major focus should be on transformational leadership:

... have you insourced an IT team that previously had been outsourced? Created a centralized IT culture in a previously decentralized organization? Changed your IT organizational structure to a business relationship management structure, an approach currently in vogue for bridging the gap between IT and business? Get it on the resume and get it up high ...

That can be especially important with IT increasingly being expected to drive business growth.


In the article, Chris Patrick, global CIO practice leader in the Dallas office of executive recruiter Egon Zehnder International AG, advises talking not only about what you did, but how you did it:

Companies balance the quantitative with the qualitative, and sometimes the qualitative can be more important. How much carnage did you leave behind, or did you actually build a strong collaborative environment where people felt they were participating?

He added:

Being able to build a team, to work across a matrix organization and to drive change when one doesn't necessarily "own or control all the levers"-those are critical attributes for a CIO.

It also quotes Bruce Barnes, president of Bold Vision, a consulting firm based in Dublin, Ohio, saying:

The underlying themes for the budding CIO are now innovation and creativity.Cost-effectiveness and assuring high reliability in a 'no-more-added budget' environment are simply table stakes, that is, not brag-able. You need a bigger story.

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