Mark McDonald

A member of the Gartner Blog Network

Entries Tagged as 'Business'

Warning Signs that IT is signing up for requirements that cannot be delivered through technology

by Mark P. McDonald  |  March 8, 2012  |  2 Comments

IT solutions are complex, cross functional, intricate and aspirational.  It is no wonder that getting the right scope, requirements and solution is a persistent challenge.  Frankly, IT solutions rarely meet these challenges, particularly in new areas and even more specifically on the first try.  Project over-runs, weak benefits realization, poor quality, late deliveries, mulligans (do […]


Category: Innovation Re-imagine IT Technology     Tags: , , ,

Business Investments vs. Business cases: start one and stop the other

by Mark P. McDonald  |  April 13, 2011  |  2 Comments

It is time to replace the traditional IT business case with a Business Investment Plans.   Why?  For the simple reason that they do not work, at least they do not work from the perspective of helping an organization realize benefits from IT investments and projects.  Part of re-imagining IT is taking a hard look at […]


Category: budgets CFO Economy IT Governance Re-imagine IT Tools     Tags: , , , , ,

Finally, proof that technology creates value, how you should the $1,700 number

by Mark P. McDonald  |  April 4, 2011  |  Comments Off

Saturday the Wall Street Journal featured a brief article in its ‘number of the week’ section — $1,700 per person.  That was the amount calculated by Jeremy Greenwood and Karen A. Kopecky in a study conducted for the University of Pennsylvania and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Using econometric models, the two estimated the […]

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Category: Strategy Technology web 2.0     Tags: , ,

What is the size of your deck?

by Mark P. McDonald  |  November 22, 2010  |  2 Comments

That sounds like a personal question. It is not.  Just an observation that size of your presentation deck tells more about you than you might imagine.  This is particularly important as we enter a period of intense communications as we consolidate 2010 achievements and finalize 2011 plans. This observation came up when we were discussing […]


Category: CIO Signs of weak management Tools     Tags: , , , , , ,

What I am learning from CIOs in Cannes.

by Mark P. McDonald  |  November 10, 2010  |  2 Comments

It is halfway through Gartner European Symposium and ITxPo and time for some intermediate reflections.  These are based on talking with CIOs both in 1:1 sessions as well as to groups of CIOs after presentations and during dinners, etc.  These views are my own and based on these interactions which represent a fraction of the […]


Category: 2011 CIO Economy Personal Observation Strategy     Tags: , , , , , ,

WSJ Essential Guide to Management builds management skills on the cheap – a review

by Mark P. McDonald  |  September 16, 2010  |  Comments Off

Building business skills in IT is a consistent requirement for CIOs and IT leaders.  The term business skills is broad ranging including specifics about your company as well as broader management concepts that shape the executive discussion.  The challenge is one of time and money, as you cannot afford to send IT teams to get […]

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Category: Book Review Change on the cheap Leadership Strategy     Tags: , ,

Why the back office may never fully understand the front office.

by Mark P. McDonald  |  August 12, 2010  |  10 Comments

Every company has tension between its front and back offices.  You can describe that tension as the difference between what customer’s want/expect and what the company is able to deliver economically.  Filling the gap between the two is a collection of hard working people, exceptions, accommodations, deals and the like that make things work. We […]


Category: Strategic planning Strategy Technology     Tags: , ,

Employees First, Customers Second a book review

by Mark P. McDonald  |  May 26, 2010  |  7 Comments

Vineet Nayar’s Employees First, Customers Second (EFCS) is a first person CEO’s account of the transformation of their enterprise.  The book is a refreshing and frank look at the challenges facing leaders looking to transform their company, culture and employees.  Nayar discusses his experience leading HCLT and its transformation from a $700 million dollar company […]


Category: Book Review Leadership Tools     Tags: , , , , , ,

Welcome to the European CIO leadership forum

by Mark P. McDonald  |  April 27, 2010  |  1 Comment

About a month ago Gartner held it’s CIO leadership forum in Phoenix and now it’s time for the European version being held at Terminal 5 at London Heathrow and what a difference a month makes.   Not only have we had the disruption of the Iceland volcanic event but the world economy continues to evolve and […]

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Category: Leadership Personal Observation Strategy     Tags: , , , , ,

Brain Science – books that prove it is not in your mind, but in your brain

by Mark P. McDonald  |  April 15, 2010  |  Comments Off

Neurological studies of the brain and how it influences social interactions and behavior were all the rage about six months ago.  Issues of how the brain perceives, filters and values information in making choices were a particular focus of these studies.  Like any subject area, some of the books were very strong, influential and well […]

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Category: Strategy Tools     Tags: , , ,