Why CIOs should start thinking like venture capitalists

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As CIOs and the IT department start being viewed as a tactical partner in industries, the CIO role becomes one of strategic investment. In a contributed piece to The Wall Street Journal, Tom Frangione, COO of capital venture firm Greylock Partners, suggests CIOs should start thinking and acting more like venture capitalists.

"No longer a cost center, IT is now an engine with the ability to propel a business into its industry's future," Mr. Frangione wrote. "The modern CIO needs to embrace a more active and daring posture that equips their organization with new and differentiating technologies."

Mr. Frangione wrote CIOs are also considered chief technology "investors," so they have to evaluate and invest in technologies that will bring returns to their business. "In other words, they are a lot like VCs," he wrote.

Mr. Frangione outlined the following four traits he sees in successful CIOs, traits that mirror characteristics of VCs.

1. Understanding what drives business and knowing what technology will support that development of the organization.

2. Creating a competitive advantage and ensuring the risks and decisions made today are going to perform well for the company instead of looking five years down the road.

3. Making intelligent bets, which often means getting comfortable making riskier bets.

4. Focusing on growth instead of just cost control helps CIOs and organizations scale businesses and increase revenue by driving innovation strategy.

More articles on CIOs:

5 lessons from American Airlines' CIO on IT integration
40 CIO leadership moves & appointments in 2015
Health IT in 2015: 10 CIOs on the highs and lows

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