A little holiday hypothesis given that today is President’s Day in the U.S. also known as a bank holiday outside the U.S. Now to the question.
The President is a leader of the country (Head of State) of their political party, and more often than not of the people. CIOs are also leaders in their enterprise, of the IT organization and in the technology community. So its possible for CIOs to identify with different Presidents as well as to identify the which president would make the best CIO.
This could be very dangerous or potentially offsetting as it runs the risk of offending CIOs or the fans of these U.S. Presidents. Please accept this as a little thought experiment, nothing more.
I have jotted down a few thoughts for a few U.S. Presidents as CIO, please add your own to the conversation.
To get the conversation rolling, setting a light tone, with tongue in cheek and having a little fun here goes:
George Washington — our first CIO, founder of the IT organization in our company who led us from a fragmented set of Data Processing departments into a united state of IT. Honorable, ethical, recognizing his role in history, Washington exemplifies what it takes to be a good CIO.
Thomas Jefferson — the CIO as innovator, concentrating on exploration, an amateur natural philosopher he investigated and sought out new frontiers for IT.
James Monroe – the CIO as corporate executive, one of the founding fathers, incredibly intelligent, he recognizes the need to define IT’s sphere of influence and scope. Through the Monroe Doctrine, he sets the boundaries for IT and its intent to repel foreign intervention.
Theodore Roosevelt — the CIO as catalyst. Expanding the scope of IT at home and abroad requires breaking up the Trusts (enterprise silo’s) that limit the company and its ability to be successful. T.R. supports extending IT across the company and projecting the information and functionality around the world.
Franklyn Delano Roosevelt — the CIO as turnaround leader. Facing significant budget cuts while seeing a greater need that IT can serve, FDR challenges the nation to restructure itself, think of itself in new ways and to go beyond fear into the future.
Richard Nixon – the CIO as corporate politician. Navigating his way through the various corridors of power, bold in opening IT to opportunities outside the company’s four walls, but never seemed to trust his people, peers or anyone for that matter.
Bill Clinton — the CIO as emotionally intelligent leader. Using intellect and a keen understanding of the corporate culture the CIO navigates their policies and initiatives to drive prosperity based on IT having “better ideas.” Perhaps Clinton is the prototype of the New CIO Leader.
THERE ARE PRESIDENTS MISSING
There is no Lincoln, Kennedy or Johnson, Bush (HW or W), Reagan, Carter, or Eisenhower, etc
I have left these and other Presidents open for your thoughts, ideas and opinions. These are omissions to get the conversation going – not oversights or my belief that they were poor presidents or would make poor CIOs.
So, it’s a holiday, which presidents do you think would make good CIOs?
Happy President’s Day