CIO: Are you smart or right?
First some logic:
- CIOs are traditionally very bright when judged on logical reasoning skills.
- CIOs tend to be good at chess.
- In chess you keep your strategy secret and the focus is on making the other player lose.
This implies that by virtue of their natural abilities CIOs are likely to see others as the opponent.
The problem is that this creates a sense of isolation. “We are the IT department and you are the business”. It discourages trust-building, which to the best of my limited knowledge is a sure-fire way to lose at chess.
This approach hasn’t got the CIO community very far.
The key lesson is that there is a difference between always being right (“Don't push me. I can logic you to death”) and being smart (“How can I help you?”). The former is a defensive posture and will ensure solitary confinement defines your career.
Those that do well in life know that sometimes it is better to be smart than right.