How Can CIOs Focus on Innovation during Crisis

CIO, tech leaders, innovation, crisis, business, organizational barriers, agile approach, team, pandemic uncertainty, IT leaders, leadership, coronavirus, COVID-19, business leaders, CIO, tech leaders, pandemic uncertainty
How Can CIOs Focus on Innovation during Crisis

Today, CIOs can take advantage of the current crisis to break the status quo and shift its mindset to innovation

The business outlook is witnessing a rapid change due to the current pandemic uncertainty. Therefore, it is critical for businesses to iterate in small cycles twice a week or once in a month to see which aspects can be improved. An agile approach with a team is critical to building little prototypes that do not require huge budgets. The aim should be to come up with ideas to make things better for tomorrow without spending significant resources. Find out ways to drive these small-cycle innovations as it also helps in offering nervous employees meaningful work in uncertain times.

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CIOs often find it challenging to face a constant battle between conflicting priorities on a daily basis. However, in the time of crisis, they have an opportunity to reprioritize without an apology. They can use this moment to re-focus resources and prioritize more of the IT organization on one thing and get things done. A crisis can be handled in a better way if CIOs can show “leadership in the moment” skills. Decentralizing decision-making to local teams or regional IT leaders is also necessary. Appoint a key response coordinator and decentralize the innovating and decision-making to local teams.

During a crisis, going after strategic plans for innovation may not be smart, since they can turn to be long-term. CIOs need to pick a timeline and help people see where they are headed instead of planning it out. It is important that business leaders keep their up-to-date about innovation progress more often during a crisis. The innovations achieved during this crisis will have long-lasting effects on organizations years from now.

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As per experts, there will be a significant increase in the adoption of new technology practices at a faster rate. This is a perfect moment for CIOs to try and take tech or a new process approach to where there were organizational barriers. It is a good time to change organizational and people dynamics and get them to adopt something new. A crisis creates enormous hurdles, fear, and uncertainty; however, it also removes the boundaries of a business and creates space for innovation.

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Sneha Bokil is a Senior Editor with OnDot Media. She writes editorials on an array of topics ranging from IoT, AI, ML, and cloud computing, among others. She has over 9 years of experience in the field of content creation, where she has written on technology, both enterprise and consumer, and finance.