Career advice: Managing vs. leading
Premier 100 IT Leader Michael Capone also answers questions on getting an MBA and the single most important issue that IT departments face
Computerworld - Ask a Premier 100 IT Leader Michael Capone Title: Corporate vice president and CIO Company: Automatic Data Processing
Capone is this month's Premier 100 IT Leader, answering questions about what separates a leader from a manager, pursuing business education and the issue that all IT organizations should be addressing. If you have a question you'd like to pose to one of our Premier 100 IT Leaders, send it to email@example.com.
How does a good manager become a leader? Managing and leading have virtually nothing to do with one another. Managing implies supervision and providing direction, both which are of course necessary activities in any organization. Leading is all about creating a vision that is so compelling people will follow you without the exercise of any formal authority. We assume that it is a natural progression for managers to become leaders, but this is often not the case. Many of the most extraordinary acts of leadership I have witnessed have come from people who had no management responsibility whatsoever.
I'm thinking about pursuing an MBA. What should I study? Finance. Strong financial skills are always valuable in business and are a great compliment to technical knowledge.
What major issues should an IT department be planning to address in the coming year? Year after year, the answer to this question never changes for me. There is only one issue that IT departments should be addressing: Is IT able to make a material contribution to the advancement of your organization's business strategy? Confronting this issue may lead to some interesting decisions around analytics, the cloud and many other areas.
More Ask a P100 IT Leader columns
- Career advice: Moving into Internet security
- Career advice: What separates leaders from managers?
- Career advice: Do IT pros need to know about business?
- Career advice: Initiating change from below
- Career advice: Where to focus? Data, data, data
- Career advice: Moving to the public sector
- Career advice: Fiftysomething and looking for a job
- Career advice: Making IT more influential in the business
- Career advice: Grasping the business
- Career advice: The most promising IT skills right now
Read more about IT Careers in Computerworld's IT Careers Topic Center.
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