IT's Human Energy Crisis

By Thornton May, Computerworld |  Career, employment

Next-generation CIOs will have to manage and increase the human energy levels of their teams. Just as we meter devices to determine their energy consumption, so too will IT leaders meter the people, processes and technology sets deployed in the enterprise to determine impact on IT energy level.

Job 1 is to take advantage of the economic downturn and remove from the enterprise energy vampires -- people who are always negative. Every organization has them. One way energy vampires suck the energy out of others is that they are so negative, more positive people expend energy trying not to spend time with them.

Job 2, on the process side, is to rationalize IT finances. A major energy sink and morale-buster in many IT organizations is the lack of a decent IT accounting system. World-class IT accounting is very exothermic. Knowing your costs and the value that IT generates for the business releases all kinds of positive energy. William Miller, the controller at Nationwide Services Co., has created a second-to-none IT accounting system. Diane Bryant and her team at Intel annually publish a report of the value that IT delivers.

And Charlie Feld, former CIO at Frito-Lay, Delta Airlines and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad and author of Blind Spot: A Leader's Guide to IT-Enabled Business Transformation, sees another problem. He believes that IT has become dangerously overspecialized. Having to work through multiple noncommunicating silos of IT expertise consumes a lot of energy.

And excessive energy consumption is as detrimental in the IT department as it is in the data center.

Thornton May is the author of The New Know: Innovation Powered by Analytics and executive director of the IT Leadership Academy at Florida State College at Jacksonville.

Read more about Management and Careers in Computerworld's Management and Careers Topic Center.

Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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