Anton Langeler | IT Director | O'Neill Europe
I think the place of the CIO in senior management is so important. But I think if you, as CIO, sit at the senior management [table], it's wrong. You should try to turn it around. You should [provide] for every manager the added value to make the decision based on facts. Sometimes, if you work in a creative environment, it's not easy. Try to get management on the level that they need you. Then it's only a question of, "Why is the CIO not in senior management?" Then it makes your life 10 times easier. The struggling of many CIOs who don't sit in senior management is that they see some barriers, or they are too much focused on products, too much focused on delivering tools, and not linked directly to the strategy. I can tell you, every time, if we are in the budget phase, or we are in the roadmap phase, I'm the first one sitting with each department director or global director, together, [asking] “What are your plans?” Based on that I write directly, “What are your actions?” Sometimes I have, per year, at least 157 projects or actions that I would like to do, and how I combine it in my IT department. Based on that, my IT strategy is always aligned with the business. If you have, during your roadmap phase, the chance [to ask], “Where can I support you?” and you listen and take only one or two hours’ time with every global director or director of managers on the floor, you are sitting as soon as possible at the table of senior management.