i-59L5CNk-X3_previewThere are incredible opportunities for companies to leverage digital platforms and technologies to create new business models and deliver differentiated customer experiences that can provide them with a competitive advantage.

But in order for companies to succeed in the new digital era, they need bold leadership in providing to employees and other stakeholders a clear vision for what the future holds - and the journey the organization must take to get there.

"It's no longer enough for a CIO to lead an IT organization. Today's CIO must drive change management across the enterprise in order for the company to succeed," said Bob Concannon, Senior Client Partner, CIO/IT Officers Practice at Korn Ferry. Concannon was one of the distinguished speakers at HMG Strategy's 2018 San Francisco CIO Executive Leadership Summit held on April 26. 

As CIOs have stepped out of the back-rooms and into the spotlight in helping companies to craft business strategy, they've also needed to disrupt themselves and be receptive to other opinions. "To be a great leader, you need to be open to new ideas and other perspectives," said Tony Leng, Managing Director and CIO Practice Leader, Diversified Search. 

This includes a willingness among CIOs to update their leadership style and be transparent in their communications with peers and employees. "How are you going to change your organization if you can't change yourself?" asks Leng. "You have to be authentic if you want people to listen and follow."

As CEOs and executive teams recognize the importance of reimagining and reinventing the company in order to remain competitive, it's also important for CIOs to establish themselves as effective change agents. "The leaders that do best are those that help their peers and senior executives understand how they can help drive change," said David Morris, Founder, Chairman & CEO, HiPER Solutions Group - The HSG. 

It's also essential for CIOs to take innovative approaches to problem-solving. "Many of the things that make you good as a CIO - such as delivering programs and projects on budget, and tracking uptime KPIs - prevent you from being successful as a disruptive, transformational leader," said Ralph Loura, former CTO at Rodan + Fields. "As a visionary leader, you must learn to think like a CEO."

"Companies can be bad at disrupting themselves," said Ben Gibson, CMO at Nutanix. "Sometimes, people feel like the company has become too big and they want to move on. For leaders, there are opportunities to recruit entrepreneurs and innovative thinkers."

For CIOs to successfully help disrupt their organizations, they also must be willing and able to reinvent themselves. "You've got to figure out a way to constantly disrupt yourself," said Naresh Shanker, former CIO, HP, Inc.

To learn more about other top-notch thought leaders who speak at HMG Strategy's Executive Leadership Summits, click here.