New IT Leaders: Don't Be a Snob

Author(s): Bushra Tobra

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(By Info-Tech Analyst Bushra Tobah - Printed with permission from Processor magazine

After months of preparation and round after round of grueling interviews, you’ve finally landed that IT leadership position. You know that the role of an IT leader is to build bridges between IT and the business-side of the organization; you need to enable business leaders to further their objectives through the strategic use of IT. So, it’s your first day and you find your new office, briefly introduce yourself to your staff, and head straight to your boss’ office. You embark on a long succession of meetings with business stakeholders, barely to be seen by your staff for the next month. You’re an IT leader now, so it’s all about forging relationships with business leadership, right?

Wrong. Info-Tech Research Group conducted a series of interviews with IT leaders, from managers to CIOs, on their transitions into leadership positions. Research findings showed that one of the biggest mistakes made by leaders in their early days was over-focusing on the business leaders and failing to foster relationships with their new staff.  IT leaders that are just starting  are often very nice to upper management and bend-over backwards trying to earn credibility in business’ eyes, but when it comes to their own staff members, they build distance; they develop a snobbish, arrogant attitude towards their technical teams.

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