Do you surround yourself with “Yes Men”? Is your staff afraid to ask questions or debate decisions?
If you answered yes to the above, chances are you do not have a high-performing IT leadership team.
It is a known fact that what happens in the CIO’s office ripples through the IT department. Behaviors that originate with the CIO and his/her lieutenants filter down and are repeated by the staff. The failure of IT in an organization can be traced back to the conduct of the CIO and the leadership team. The opposite is also true. A high-performing IT leadership team breeds a high-performance IT department, which leads to a company’s success in business.
One of the reasons I credit my success as a CIO was the fact that I had an open door policy for my staff (all my staff) to be able to walk in and talk to me. No problem was too small and no topic too mundane. Being able to talk to your superiors makes a company more functional.
In addition, I would schedule a lunch every month with various staff to discuss and take the pulse of the department. It was a learning session where we discussed initiatives and made sure we agreed on the direction the department was going. As head of a department you take full responsibility for your department’s course. But in order for a department to be successful, your team needs to have a say in the direction it is going.
So how do you develop a high-performing IT team?
- Develop unity and cohesion with all your staff. Break down silos that are so common within IT departments.
- Develop interpersonal relationships. Everyone must have a chance to contribute, learn from and work with other members.
- Develop common goals and visions. Individuals must have the ability to work together toward a common goal.
- Ensure an environment where ideas and solutions can be freely contributed and information shared.
- Have everyone recognize and respect differences in others.
- Have everyone value the ideas and contributions of others.
- Have your staff participate fully and keep to their commitments.
- Create and environment where there is fun and everyone cares about the results. Strive for the “win-win”.
- Create accountability through a working process. What tasks are prioritized and what are everyone’s responsibilities? How do individuals report back on progress and what metrics do you track?