The age of the CIO has arrived
The definition of disruption is something that prevents continuing or operating in a normal way, but having the vast majority of the workforce locked at home has forced a new normal which has also revealed some uncomfortable truths; some work based conditioning is being shown up for what it is; ritual of a bygone age. Things like having to “go” to work and that the working day is 9-5. Millions of people have found out that many of the tasks they perform for work can be done equally well, at different times and in many cases more efficiently from home and other places. The whole notion of work, the time aged behavioural conditioning and expectations around when and how they work, will be changing for lots of people. A different balance to life is being experienced. Albeit a very extreme experience.
some work based conditioning is being shown up for what it is; ritual of a bygone age
Technologies that make remote collaboration a reality have now scaled in response to Covid-19 and will be well embedded by the time “this is all over,” meaning that when this disruption passes we are clearly not going to continue to operate in that previous ‘normal’ way. There will be a new normal that needs to be established based on the experience and learning that people have had. The best of the extreme lock down ways of working will need to be blended with what will now be seen to be extremes of the previous normal.
Technologists will be able to help their businesses to not only do the bare minimum to resettle the workforce into a new norm, but also to actively envision and help harness new and emerging technologies to deliver a much more flexible, connected and user focussed workforce, maintaining the transformational momentum Covid has created once the freedom to leave our homes has returned.
Businesses looking forward to going back to normal, will have a very limited shelf life
The ongoing debate about the relative value / necessity of having a technologist on the main board of a business has clearly now been resolved. Those businesses just thinking about how they react and survive the current situation before getting back to normal, will still think that such a role on the board is unnecessary. These businesses will have a very limited shelf life. But for those which recognise that Covid-19 has forced the crossing of a kind of digital Rubicon, from which there is no going back, will understand that the winners of tomorrow will be enabling their people to leverage technology to deliver their best work whilst balancing both home and work responsibilities. Work really will become something we do, rather than a place we go. The artificial separation of work and personal life, to create a work-life balance will be replaced by a balanced life which will be constantly flexing in response to changing work and personal responsibilities. Technology will play a critical part in enabling this ongoing balancing act and to do this, businesses will need technological leadership centre stage within their most senior leadership backed by operational strategies and investments.
The age of the CIO has finally, fully arrived.