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Virtual Workshop: Becoming a Modern CIO

The role of the CIO is rapidly evolving, requiring a different set of skills and strategies to lead IT in today's demanding environment. As a result, modern CIOs must approach the business of IT differently by helping to enable a digital enterprise and intentionally developing the next generation of leaders.

To address these challenges, the IT Media Group hosted a diverse group of cross-industry IT professionals for a virtual workshop entitled 'Becoming a Modern CIO.' The session explored the essential skills and strategies contemporary IT executives use to succeed.

Nasheen Liu, Partner & SVP, CIO Program Strategy at The IT Media Group, organized the session. Paul Lewis, Chief Technology Officer at Pythian, facilitated the workshop. Also participating were John Comacchio, SVP and CIO at Teknion and Julie Hansen, VP & Global Executive Advisor at Salesforce.

The interactive seminar included a combination of live polling, chat feedback, Q&A, and panel discussion about the challenges and best practices for the following topic areas:

Key discussion areas

  • Modern Expectations for the CIO: The evolution of the traditional CIO role and the changes required to ensure future success.
  • Orchestrating the Digital Enterprise: Essential skills for helping the organization achieve strategic goals through technology.
  • New Communication Paradigms: Communicating differently to engage teams and stakeholders to drive collaboration across the organization.
  • Developing Future-Ready Talent: Strategies for growing the organization's talent to enable the digital enterprise.
  • Questions and Answers: Top-of-mind issues from workshop attendees.

Attendees received a report containing critical insights, and more than 70 strategies CIOs use to address their challenges.

Paul Lewis noted, "This workshop was crucial because there's a gap in the skill sets of modern CIOs." Panelists agreed that the expectation of current CIOs continues to expand, affecting the longevity of senior technology leaders. Lewis added, "The role of the CIO has widened in a very short period, and while keeping the lights on in the data center is still part of the job, additional business priorities must now be led by IT."

Panelists discussed the CIO attributes required to realize digital transformation in companies that resist change. John Comacchio explained, "As a CIO, you must start planting the seeds to develop allies that will bring you to other areas of the enterprise." Comacchio explained that convincing the organization to change is a long sales cycle. He added, "Pioneers get the arrows, while the settlers get the land."

The discussion highlighted risks to the role of the CIO. "If you don't change with the business needs, you will be replaced, or the company will bring in another role above you," said Julie Hansen. This point highlights the drastic changes occurring across industries as companies digitally transform. "The whole role and the business are evolving, so you need to know how to evolve."

Participation at ITMG Tech Summits is complimentary. Inquiries about this event may be made by emailing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or using this link to subscribe to our VIP members list to be notified of future Summits and Workshops.

The IT Media Group's events are some of the most successful event programs for IT leaders, bringing together scores of senior-level peers for thoughtful discussions around the top issues facing enterprise IT. For a better understanding of these events, please visit our Video section.

The IT Media Group is an award-winning producer of events and content for senior IT executives. Based in Toronto, our leadership team includes some of the most experienced and well-respected media, technology and business professionals serving the IT executive community in Canada.