Board-Level CIO Series Summary in Forbes

March 08, 2016
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The Board-Level CIO series in Forbes explores what CIOs at some of the world’s most recognizable firms did that led to inclusion of the CIO seat at the organization’s board.

by Peter High, series on Forbes.com

When you look up the boards of prominent companies, they are typically littered with CEOs of other businesses. The reasons are obvious. The experience of CEOs of other businesses are relevant, and the advice that they can offer is likely to be the kind that will help augment revenue and/or cut costs as appropriate because no executive in any company thinks as much about these considerations as do the CEOs. The roles that have been the breeding grounds of CEOs, namely CFOs, COOs, and business unit heads have also been board members for the same reasons.

One “c-level” role that has not done nearly as well historically in gaining access to boards is the chief information officer. It is not as though CIOs have not had the ambition to become board members. In fact, of the many CIOs that I advise, over half have articulated their desire to join the boards of companies to me. Historically, there are a variety of reasons why this has been a difficult goal for CIOs to achieve, but there are now many reasons why CIOs are likely to gain greater traction. I explore these reasons in detail in the kick-off article for this series.

Many leading CIOs are blazing a new path that others are sure to follow. Organizations will increasingly think about including the strongest CIOs on their boards to ensure that they do not have any blind spots in their plans both from an innovation and from a risk mitigation perspective.

The series will include the following board-level CIOs, among others:

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