Something that has gained traction in the past few years is the concept of a C-Suite level influencer that spearheads the large scale Digital Transformation and Business Transformation projects that are being implemented now.
An article by McKinsey stated the CTO role as “a high-level orchestrator of a complex process that involves large numbers of discrete initiatives.” This role however does not entail the day-to-day decision making that is reserved for the line managers within the project, but it is to ensure that the initiative is not only running efficiently, but also is correctly advocated on the C-Level and needs and pivots are met with proper expedience, protecting the bottom line.
The CTO position alleviates some stress and or burden from the CIO, or Director of IT that might be in the leadership position for a program, while also alleviating the CEO and CFO respectively from carrying the burden alone on their side of the initiative as well.
A CTO should have a strong cross-functional background, strong interpersonal skills, maintain a high Emotional Intelligence, while being a purveyor of hard facts and analysis (and or analytics) to effectively communicate and lead within this position’s end game.
This position is a difficult one to fill, as it focuses on a deep understanding of an organizations business model or processes, its technologies in play, the program initiatives and how the transformation will impact and modify all of the above.
This is where we at Platinum PMO have found a niche in not only program (PMO) leadership consulting, but being an independent consultant that can effectively grant knowledge transfer, past experience and outside of the organization optics that will fill in the gaps that a CTO might have. It will also encourage bolder initiatives for the organization and assist in cost containment.