The Weidenhammer Blog

CIO Mindset – Enable and Govern

Posted on: April 9th, 2014 | Category: Network Security

Historically the role of the CIO was to centralize and control IT resources and data and then somehow move the organization forward.  Frequently that meant saying NO to users with routine and even innovative requests.

A recent post by one of my Weidenhammer colleagues got me thinking about a better approach to moving the business forward and transforming operational activities to accelerate business.

For a long time, I have been advocating that IT needs to show users (and their managers) how to do “things right.”  Make it easier for them to use and leverage technology “properly” while at the same time, making it more difficult for them to do it the “wrong way.”  The idea being, show departments the right way to use technology, to facilitate a new capability and have the proper procedures to ease its use and be intuitive to follow.

Buried in this Weidenhammer post was a quote by Kevin Wright, CIO at Softchoice.  He used the phrase “Enable and Govern.”  Much simpler to understand and much easier to grasp.

CIOs need to ENABLE the user community.  Don’t just centralize, control and block what is being attempted.  We need to enable the business, let users get the benefit.  But provide some governance to ensure security is maintained, technology is used effectively and efficiently and the processes are streamlined and less complicated.  Enable the business with new functionality but govern its use to ensure proper deployment.

Rick Wilson

Rick Wilson

Mr. Wilson has over 40 years of experience in Information Technology and has been directing multi-million dollar technology projects since 1982. He consults on Strategic Planning, Network architecture, Datacenter design, Help Desk staffing, Call Center design, ERP selection, Process improvement, Organizational structure, Voice deployment, Telephony cost control, Technology roadmaps, Scorecards and KPI metrics. Mr. Wilson leads Data Center Co-Location selection projects at a national level and conducts network security audits of financial institutions. He also performs Sarbanes-Oxley audits and analyzes the technical and financial criteria for vendor selection of a 700 site Wide-Area-Network (MPLS). He has also served as an Expert Witness in a civil suit for an EHR deployment in the medical industry. Wilson’s recent projects include leading clients through ERP requirements definition, process analysis, vendor qualification and ERP vendor selection. He also led a Business Continuity project for an $11 billion dollar bank, as well as a multi-million dollar technology upgrade for the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Wilson possesses a B.A from the University of Michigan.