Tech As A Core Competency

March 6, 2009

Dennis Stevenson has an article at IT Toolbox titled; Business People need IT Competency too.

The context is that to be an effective General Manager, technology is becoming a skill that needs to join the competencies in Operations, HR Management, Financial Management, Sales Management etc.

The more you understand about how technology happens and what makes a good decision vs. a sexy buzzword, the better you will be in using technology as a lever to transform your business.

Those of you following this blog for a while know I agree with this.

However the article actually states that you need to Master all of the above. Unless you are a very small business where everyone wears 5 hats, I don’t think many of us can be a master outside of our own specialties.

As I have written before, we need to understand at a  relevant level of detail.

As SME business managers, I don’t believe that the relevant level of detail is for competency in technology is writing software code.

But considering technology as a core competency states that you understand what IT can, and cannot do.

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4 Responses to “Tech As A Core Competency”


  1. @elliotross,

    Thanks for the discussion on my post. I would offer one amendment to what you wrote above. At Honeywell (in particular), Six Sigma was a skillset that all management was expected to master. No other skillset in the executive’s arsenal received so much formalized attention.

    By way of example, leaders were expected to be Six Sigma Blackbelt certified. Special training courses were developed to cater to the executive schedule to impart these skills.

    I don’t believe that executives need to master all the skillsets I listed. It wouldn’t hurt, more skill is often a good thing.

    Dennis

    • elliotross Says:

      @Dennis, thank you so much for comment,

      I agree -I am not six sigma qualified – but I worked in a strong IS 9000 organization- and that skill was mandatory as well for all executives.

      In fact in this ‘blogversation’ with Glenn Whitfield;

      http://itbusinessalignment.wordpress.com/2009/03/05/cio-no-leader-wanted/

      I was putting forward that argument – that just as the executive team need to know the relevant level of detail in everything from supply chain to to finance – IT should be the same.

      Regards

      Elliot Ross

  2. elliotross Says:

    XUP – No obligation at all!

    This is definitely for a targeted niche – but even tech guys can read some general interest (and very, very humerous) blogging material!

    Regards!

  3. XUP Says:

    Since you visit my blog so much I would love to visit yours and comment, too, but all this techie stuff makes my eyes glaze over


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