Category: CTO

CTOs and CIOs: Transitioning from Keeping the Lights On to Investing in Innovation and Disruptive Technologies

CTOs and CIOs: Transitioning from Keeping the Lights On to Investing in Innovation and Disruptive Technologies

realized-1238069When a senior technology executive (CIO, CTO, SVP of IT, Head of Development, etc.) talks to me, it’s because they are interested in making a job change or seeing what’s out there in the job market at the least. The overwhelming factor is the frustration they feel with their current company. After all, their passion is being able to leverage technologies to transform the business, revolutionize the customer experience, and deliver breakthrough capabilities that give the company a distinct competitive advantage. But many companies handcuff their CTOs and stifle innovation because they are not willing to invest or have assumed a completely risk-averse posture when it comes to technology. They’d rather do what everyone else in their field is doing and play catch-up, which reminds me of a story.

What’s Everyone Else Doing?

I have a close friend that is the head of technology for a mid-sized company providing professional services in the financial sector. He is a forward thinker and very strategic in the way he approaches technology acquisition. But he understands how the business leadership thinks, so he’s extremely pragmatic in what he recommends and presents for his technology roadmap. Even so, the rest of the executive team thwarts any attempt to be a leader with innovation. Many years ago, he delivered a detailed strategy to consolidate and virtualize their data center environment and to create a private Cloud for their business applications. No dice! But, three years later, when their buddies who were executives at competing firms talked about their plan to go to a virtual data center and put their applications in the Cloud, it was suddenly a top priority.

You’ve Heard This Story Before

Sound familiar? I thought so.

It’s time to do it right and find an organization that doesn’t just talk innovation but actually puts their money where their mouth is and invests in emerging technologies. Don’t get me wrong, running an IT operation that’s lean and stable is an admirable thing, but is that why you got into this business? To run a cost center with a shrinking budget, zero ability to contribute to the growth of the organization, and the scapegoat for most of the problems in the company?

You’ve come too far and have too much yet to give to simply sit back and just make sure that you keep the lights on in IT. There are plenty of aggressive up-and-comers at the next level down who are willing to take on these types of roles until they’ve arrived and been-there-done-that long enough to realize they’re not doing what they love either.

Protect Your Legacy

To protect what you’ve built in your career so far and to continue to fuel your passion until you retire, you deserve to discover the opportunities that are available. Despite what it seems, there are companies out there that are market leaders and willing to invest in the development or early adoption of disruptive technologies. It takes a focused effort to identify them, engage them, and present a brand image that is appealing to them.

Build Your Support Team

To be successful in this endeavor, enlisting a team of experts to collaborate with you and support you is a great approach. This includes building your brand message and articulating it effectively in your Executive Resume, LinkedIn Profile, Executive Bio, and other materials. But it’s more than that. These market leaders are going to be highly selective, so developing viable channels or inroads into these companies is vital.

 

About Stephen—-

Stephen Van Vreede is not your average IT/technical résumé writer. Some people just write résumés; he cares about the whole job search. Servings as a Job Search Recruiting Agent, he provides career strategy and concierge job search solutions for senior (15+ years) (ITtechExec) and up-and-coming (NoddlePlace) (5-15 years) tech and innovation leaders. Stephen and his team focus on building simplified, targeted, and certain career move campaigns, be it an external search or an internal promotion. He is co-author of UNcommon with career development leader Brian Tracy. Contact Stephen directly at Stephen@ittechexec.com or send him an invite at https://www.linkedin.com/in/stephenvanvreedeTo see whether Stephen and his team are a good fit for you, text “STUCK” to 866-294-1324 to start a dialogue OR click on the calendar below to schedule a free 30-minute résumé assessment:

I can't believe it. I spent hours and hours trying to write my own resume. What you delivered is beyond my greatest expectations. I can't thank you enough!

Kevin K., Technical Sales Leader Atlanta, GA Technical Sales Resume Makeover January 2, 2015

This resume is outstanding! You were able to pinpoint my key skills and present them concisely.

Peter A., IT Engineer Memphis, TN Outstanding IT Resume Makeover January 2, 2015

I think the resume and LinkedIn profile are perfect! I can't thank you enough for your hard work on this

Joe G., IT Data Center Director Long Island, NY IT Resume and LinkedIn Profile Revamp January 2, 2015

Why CTOs Need a Resume Portfolio to Showcase Innovation

CTO Needs a Portfolio Infographic

Competitive Market

The funnel narrows considerably for jobs in the C-Suite today. In fact, when you’re talking about a Chief Technology Officer (CTO) role, they are even more difficult to come across than their counterparts in IT (CIO), Finance (CFO), Operations (COO), Marketing (CMO), and Strategy (CSO). This means that a lot of excellent candidates with backgrounds in product development, solution architecture, engineering, and digital transformation will be in contention for these coveted few opportunities.

Differentiation is Needed

Making yourself stand out from the crowd is a must, but most candidates simply do what everyone else does: update the resume with some bland statements and trite descriptions, then copy it over into their LinkedIn Profile.

Sorry, but that just won’t cut it. If you want recruiters and decision makers to perceive you as innovative — you know, the type of person that they want to take over the chief innovator role for their company — than you have to show yourself to be, in fact, different and distinct, with a vision that is hyper-dimensional (sorry…HR types might say “out-of-the-box thinker” here).

Be Taken Seriously as a CTO Candidate

Do you want to be taken seriously? Then show it!

Present yourself in a unique way. Showcase the creativity that you helped to foster in an organization. Highlight the solution path you and your teams took to take a few novel products from conception through to new product introduction (NPI). Do it in a way that gets them thinking about the possibilities of you leading their organization to become an innovation engine.

Resume Portfolio Documents

The great part is, there’s no established standard or “rules” for how to present your record of innovation beyond the resume and LinkedIn Profile. However, I strongly encourage that the presentation be separate from the traditional resume. For example, you can create a detailed innovation timeline, a one-page visual (like an infographic), or an extensive write up on some high-profile innovations that you helped to deliver.

Writing and Creating Visuals Isn’t Your Strength?

No worries…we’ve got you covered. That’s a specialty of ours. I am passionate about connecting with innovators and helping them to position themselves effectively for these roles in the market.

  • To schedule a free consult call with me, click on the link for my online calendar.
  • Check out the video on this post on YouTube.

Stephen Van Vreede

 

About Stephen—-

Stephen Van Vreede is not your average IT/technical résumé writer. He provides career strategy and concierge job search solutions for senior (15+ years) (ITtechExec) and up-and-coming (NoddlePlace) (5-15 years) tech and innovation leaders. Stephen and his team focus on building simplified, targeted, and certain career move campaigns, be it an external search or an internal promotion. He is co-author of UNcommon with career development leader Brian Tracy (out June 11, 2015). Contact Stephen directly at Stephen@ittechexec.com or send him an invite at https://www.linkedin.com/in/stephenvanvreede. To see whether Stephen and his team are a good fit for you, take their free (and anonymous) 1-minute compatibility quiz, Is the ITtechExec Approach a Good Match for You? Also, feel free to take his complimentary resume self-assessment quiz, How Certain Can You Be About Your Technical Resume? You might be surprised by what you find out!