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What are the issues that need to be addressed in creating IT’s future?

by Mark P. McDonald  |  December 21, 2012  |  2 Comments

This is the third question in the December Friday question series.  The two prior questions looked at  “Is the IT organization, as we currently know it, worth saving?” on December 7th and “What are the reasons we need IT in the future?” on December 14th.   So far there is some great discussion and comments so please keep them coming.

So, here is this week’s question for reflection and comment concentrated on the issues creating IT’s future.  We need to understand the issues so we can shape the actions, solutions and strategies that will be the basis for the future of IT.

Issues matter.  How we define issues set the context for assessing value and progress. How we communicate and share issues defines the way relationships and collaborations form around technology.  The circumstances or worldview used to diagnose issues exposes past bias and sets future limitations.

The term ‘issue’ has some issues – primarily because just about anything could be an issue.  So let’s concentrate on defining issues by answering the following questions about technology before we focus specifically on the IT organization:

  • What is the problem the enterprise faces that can be addressed with technology or that technology creates?  Be as specific as possible as generalities drive us back to the past rather than helping generate a view on the future.
  • What are the opportunities that technology creates or the latent opportunities that technology should address?
  • What must technology get right or do better to live up to its potential?  Yes it’s a different way to ask about opportunities.
  • What must technologies stop doing, give up or not do in the future?

Now ask those questions but substitute “IT organization” for “technology” to round out the issues facing IT and technology.

A clear view of the issues establishes a defined path for the future of IT.

I want to personally thank you for your thoughts and comments.

Category: 2013  economy  it-epic-journey  leadership  tough-questions  

Tags: technology  technology-leadership  

Mark P. McDonald
GVP EXP
8 years at Gartner
24 years IT industry

Mark McDonald, Ph.D., is a former group vice president and head of research in Gartner Executive Programs. He is the co-author of The Social Organization with Anthony Bradley. Read Full Bio


Thoughts on What are the issues that need to be addressed in creating IT’s future?


  1. Pearl Zhu says:

    Provocative year-end pondering, if complement more “What” issues:

    –What are the proper expectation for CIO to deliver IT result? (Is it realistic to get them all- good, fast, cheap)

    –What are the CIOs attitude to Cloud, and Is Cloud enterprise ready?

    –What are the CIOs leadership influence –proactive or reactive…transformational or transactional….

    thanks.

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