Power and passion
I recently had the privilege of being part of an IT forum made up of executives from not-for-profit organisations about, among other things, using metrics to communicate the value IT provides to the business.
The IT forum is made up of ICT executives working in 105 not-for-profit organisations, typically from the community and social services sectors. It’s an informal meeting held every quarter, during which peers share ideas and information on everything from projects and resources to infrastructure management and enterprise strategies. The latest meeting was hosted by Joe Perricone from the Cerebral Palsy Alliance.
It was a fascinating discussion. IT leaders in the not-for-profit industry face many of the same issues as their commercial counterparts — their IT strategy must align with that of the business and communication and managing expectations is vital. And, while most CIOs well understand the mantra of ‘doing more with less’, those in the not-for-profit segment live and breathe the concept.
People who work in the not-for-profit industry do so out of passion — and it was evident in the conversation around the table. It can be a double-edged sword for CIOs, however, because highly invested people are not always won over by processes and logic. As one CIO put it, passion “translates to their expectations and the way you respond to their requests”. These leaders understand all too well the importance of engaging their customers.
Tim Mendham’s series on the industry provides an insight into CIOs in not-for-profit organisations and the similarities and differences between the sector and so-called ‘commercial’ organisations. The changing nature of the CIO role is front and centre, just as it is for so many of you.
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