Always remember the BOARD guidelines
When working with the board be:
CIOs can achieve this by following a proven process…
Follow a step by step process to increase your
influence with the board
New CIO: 6-12 Maximizing CIO
Apply prepare and excel steps
at every board meeting to
Experienced CIO 1-3 years
in new enterprise:
Few boards have extensive IT expertise
“Unless they have a technologist on the board as an advisor or a full
board member, what they’re really going to want to know is: Tell me
how you’re going to help the business?”
— John Viglione Vice President and CTO, Vertex
Lack of technical savvy on the board is
not a major impediment to successful CIO-
CIOs who successfully interact with the
board demonstrate that they are true
business leaders who just happen to be in
charge of IT.
How can CIOs prepare for board interactions?
What does the board expect of IT?
Who are the individual directors?
Prepare for What does the board agenda look like?
What is their preferred communication
What is the role of the IT department in
preparing for board interactions?
“Corporate boards are increasingly aware of how dependent their companies
have become on IT, and they are paying closer attention than ever before to
its workings, even more so than they did during Y2K”
Richard Nolan, business professor, University of Washington.
How can CIOs excel at each board meeting?
What should the presentation look like?
What am I trying to accomplish during the
Excel at board meeting?
Which communication styles work most
How do I know if I am doing well during the
“Know when to shut up. Preferably after they’ve said yes.”
Mike Williams, CIO, DCMA
What is the desired outcome of the
presentation or interaction?
There are a limited number of subjects for board interactions:
Inform – Updates, progress against goals, assessments.
Are you delivering good or bad news?
Request – Funding, resources, or time.
How much do you need and when?
What is the expected benefit to the enterprise?
Alert – Something has gone wrong.
Who is impacted?
How and when will it be remediated?
Do your key messages drive towards the desired outcome?
Is the desired result or outcome clearly stated?
CIOs who are the most successful in working with the board
demonstrate that they are business leaders first, technology leaders
Develop a board-aligned IT organization and board relevant content.
Prepare extensively for board interactions but communicate
succinctly for maximum impact.
Be aware of the risks as well as the benefits of working with the
board and manage both ends of the spectrum.
Increase your influence with the board over time by expanding your
relevance and range of enterprise responsibilities.