Digital Leadership

Presented by Abbie Lundberg, President, Lundberg Media

The impact of digitization on business is both profound and widespread. It’s increasingly on the agendas of boards of directors and executive committees, and it’s turning the relationship between companies and their customers on its head. Technology is both the instigator of and the vehicle to manage significant disruption, changing the way companies engage with and understand customers, how they operate, and their very business models.

In this session, Abbie Lundberg will share highlights from recent research conducted at both MIT CISR and HBR Analytic Services that explores the nature of digital leadership from the board to the C suite and into the lines of business. She’ll then lead a discussion with delegates about a changing mandate for IT and the CIO role. 

Key Take-Aways:

How do you create an online experience that customers love?  Confluence of mobile, cloud and analytics are transforming business models.  CIOs are well positioned to lead digital transformation.  
Digital transformation requires:
1) Responsive IT
    -simplify, automate, offload
2) Business/IT Partnerships
    -business and IT must be connected at many levels
3) CIO leadership
    -focus on innovation

MEC’s Digital Business Transformation

Presented by: David Labistour, CEO, Mountain Equipment Co-op

MEC is here to inspire and enable everyone to lead active outdoor lifestyles. We do that by selling outdoor gear, clothing, and services; and we match our members with gear that suits their needs. But we offer more than products. We offer passion. We love to share our expertise, experience, and enthusiasm.

To be able to continue doing this in an ever changing environment, MEC is in the process of transforming our Digital backbone with sophisticated, integrated IT systems and elegant processes that will allow us to collaborate efficiently across departments, leverage our rich data effectively, evolve, transform and grow in a way that's scalable and resource-effective.

Our journey will be shared in this session, highlighting key issues and lessons learned.


Key Take-Aways:

Transformation is not just one time but rather a journey that requires different skills and departments to work together to solve problems which are constantly changing. David warns against forcing stability into the system since making it too rigid in one place can likely cause the system to break in another. Instead, he highlights how MEC is navigating through the process of transforming their digital backbone and the how vital it is to recognize that it's not about the system. It's about how people use the system and how companies are now faced with the following choices:
o  Being competitive now versus creating new value
o  Strong centralized and disciplined process versus being empowered to serve customers
o  Intelligent systems and data versus merchant skills and intuition
o  Competitive, professional, and adaptable versus culture, individuality, and lifestyle
o  Traditional tangibles versus intangible drivers

​Stop Talking about Technology and Talk about Business: Board of Directors’ Expectations of the CIO

Presented by:

(Panelists) Catherine Boivie, Executive in Residence, Beedie School of Business, SFU;
Eugen Klein, Principal, Klein Group Royal LePage City Centre;
Doug Brownridge, COO, It's just Lunch
(Moderator) Victoria Withers, Director of Board, BlueShore Financial, VCH and VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation

Boards are watching closely. Security, cloud, social networking, big data, BI analytics and mobile are being discussed in terms of defining risks that may disrupt business models and in creating new business opportunities. Boards expect CIOs to understand, manage and leverage technologies to address the requirements of today and plan for the future. The panelists, all experienced Board Directors, will discuss Boards’ expectations of the CIO in presenting the organization’s information technology plan as a strategic resource.

Key Take-Aways:

The diverse and deeply experienced panel addressed a variety of issues characterizing the Board of Directors (BoD) - CIO relationship. The conspicuously tech-savy members of the panel unanimously urged CIO's to "speak the language of business". During their brief exchanges with the BoD, it was suggested, CIO's should predominantly focus on elucidating the business value propositions of IT initiatives and investments. Doing so, the panel vociferously stated, would unequivocally result in thawing of the BoD-CIO relations. Interestingly, there were calls for CIO's to utilize the risk review committees as a supplementary channel to engage the board in discussions about IT solutions. In addition, the panel repeatedly emphasized that overseeing and developing strategies to mitigate IT risk was a priority for the BoD and it was incumbent upon CIO's, besides highlighting the plans for IT value creation, to allay concerns regarding the same. 

The Transformation of the CIO from IT Manager to Managed Services Provider

Presented by: Carlos Carreiro, Senior VP & CIO, Telus

TELUS has been on a journey to the cloud for several years. Carlos will share insights and lessons learned from that journey, including the transformation of the CIO role to that of a managed service provider. Many challenges were faced, both business and technical, and this interactive discussion is aimed at helping other companies benefit from our experience.

Key Take-Aways:

Carlos Carreiro, CIO at Telus, told us “You’ve got to piece together a wide range of offerings and services, and make everything work together for the organization. We have to really think about the way that we’re going to offer services in the future. There’s a new skill set involved – negotiations. You can’t let the business units go crazy and start developing silo-ed or shadow systems. But you have to work with them to find out what they want.” 

Build Services Not Silos: A Salesforce Vision for the Next 15 Years

Presented by: Chris Makkreel, Director Solution Engineering,

In today's world, opportunities that are born one day are gone the next. The companies that succeed are innovating and moving faster than their competitors constantly adapting to changing markets and taking advantage of new opportunities as technology shifts underneath them. This CIO conversation explores how key cloud technology is fundamentally changing the role of IT from information manager to innovation driver.

Key Take-Aways:

Connected customers change rules.  Connection can be a differentiating asset for your business.  Artificial intelligence and data science are exploding because businesseses that take the data-driven approach outperform those that don't.  What to expect in the next 15 years?  
1) Merging the real world with the virtual world;
2) communities are critical to engage;  
3) Intelligence everywhere.

Leading in a Transparent World

Presented by: Steve Cadigan, Founder, Cadigan Talent Ventures

While corporate focus has been on how tech advancements have contributed to productivity and profitability, significantly overlooked in this wave change are the massive cultural and leadership implications of all of this.  Finding the right cadence and organizational growth priorities are paramount to the successful CIO. One of the best recent examples of a company that scaled quickly and thrived in this new transparent reality is LinkedIn, and a primary factor in this success was the establishment of a culture that became a competitive advantage as the company grew 700% between 2009 and 2012. Steve Cadigan led the Talent Organization during this period of massive growth and set the standard for how companies can successfully scale during hyper-growth.  In this session, Steve will bring his insights from experiences in Silicon Valley and LinkedIn to offer insights for CIO’s on how to excel in an era where speed and scale matter more than ever.

Key Take-Aways:

What is the biggest driver of value creation? People. As we transition into a new reality, companies need to adopt different leadership strategies to attract and retain talent in the digital world. Steven weaves in insights from his time in Silicon Valley and LinkedIn to stress the importance of understanding how information overload, transparency, iteration and agility, and digital seduction affect the workplace. Talent strategy is about listening and building genuine working relationships with your team because at the end of the day, people are now joining a boss and not a company.

Strengthening the CMO-CIO Relationship to Drive Customer Experience

Presented by: Andrew Zimakas, CMO, Tangerine

The role of the CMO is evolving and collaboration between the CMO and CIO is vital. Andrew will discuss the dynamics of the CMO/CIO relationship and the importance of data analytics in the context of Tangerine’s brand transition and driving the customer experience.

Key Take-Aways:

Customers are no longer commodities. The customers have a lot of information at their finger tips and it is very easy for a customer to switch sides. To identify customer needs quickly and react to it the Chief Marketing Officer and the Chief Information Officer needs to work together very closely.  The CIO should participate in governing policies as technologies become more important to analyze data to identify customer needs. It was also suggested that having joint KPIs would help in harmonizing goals between the CIO and CMO offices. 

Creating a Connected and Engaged Organization

Presented by: Dan Pontefract, Chief Envisioner, Telus

An organization’s operating culture is constructed through conversation and circumstance, supported by relationships and trusted networks. It can be augmented with collaboration technologies that encourage people to surface experiences and ideas across locations, internal systems, and topics. Information and insights scale through integrated platforms, systemic leadership traits and iterative approaches. It's time for both leaders and employees to become collaborative, both in terms of the technology and the behaviour. It’s time for new and open leadership that uses technology not because it’s cool, but because it fosters a cultural competitive advantage.

Key Take-Aways:

Do you know the cost of disengagement and its impact to your bottom line? Satisfied employees translates into satisfied customers.  Culture can self-propel or self destruct.  Culture is your competitive edge!  CIOs can aid and abet engagement.   Telus has leveraged collaboration technologies to raise employee engagement score from 53% to 83%.

Help Me Obi Wan – You’re My only Hope: Four Cyber Security Innovations to Give You Courage

Presented by: Rick Howard, CSO, Palo Alto Networks

With all of the negative press about how weak the collective good-guy cyber defenses are, there is reason to hope. Today I discuss four cyber security innovations that not only work but will fundamentally change how we will all do our jobs in the future. Some of our community are leaning forward with these ideas and showing us the way. They are teaching us how to transform our tactical Incident Response teams into strategic intelligence organizations. They are changing our old-school thinking of deploying tactical signature defenses into the more modern Kill-Chain and Indicators-of-Compromise methodology. They are breaking new ground on how to share threat indicator information between peers. Finally, they are adopting next generation firewall technology to replace the very old last generation technology.

Key Take-Aways:

Rick Howard began with a review of security measures commonly used to counteract  ever- evolving threats to data.  Perimeter firewalls and signature scan methodologies are too restrictive to meet today’s demands of BYOD and social media.  New strategy has four pillars: 1) intelligence response team 2) Kill-chain methodology 3) Information Sharing and 4) Next generation capability in firewalls. These are designed to address vulnerable points that could invite attack.   Howard suggested a comprehensive plan of multi-layer security planning attack analysis. First comes the understanding that an attack has to go through several stages before it can be successful in achieving its goals. 
These stages typically involve:
information gathering
preparation of the appropriate weapon
delivering the weapon to a soft point, 
exploiting command and control functions, and finally 
taking action against the operator. 
A kill chain approach would detect the pattern of attacks in any of these points and track them. In the next stage the attack group signature is shared with other vendors of security software. Defense improves when all security vendors collaborate. 

Facing the CIO's Dilemma: Relevance

Presented by: Scott Greenlay, National Director Technology Consulting, MNP

Today, more than ever before, technology IS everywhere. In the past, the CIO was charged with looking after a fairly well-defined "stable" of technology. Today, primarily as a result of massive consumerization, all that has changed. Today's typical high school and university graduate comes to the workplace with more computing power and tools at their fingertips than the mainframe of 20 years ago. The Cloud has opened-up free – or near free – available on-demand applications at a rate never before seen. As a result, today’s CIO is faced with a dilemma: How does the IT department stay relevant?

This light-hearted session will strive to discuss and share ideas on how to address the challenge to increase IT's value to the organizations we serve. Through insights and stories, some humorous, Scott will share observations and ideas gained through working with some Canada's largest firms as a consultant as well as his own personal journey as a CIO. This session will touch on themes ranging from disruption, customer service, innovation, technology governance and the unique challenges of technology human resources. The goal for the session will be to help stimulate your own thoughts about how to increase the value of your own team to your organization. 

Key Take-Aways:

Core competencies identification is very important in every company. It becomes even more important when a company is taking the decision as to which services to outsource to the cloud. A few analytical matrices were discussed for strategic analysis. In the PPT (people, process, technology) model, people and processes are becoming more important than technology. SFIA framework reference was made that categorizes ninety six different IT professions into six broad categories. This framework helps in identifying which skill sets are required for each profession for talent services. The ADKAR change management model was also discussed. 

"Click on anything!” – Micro-virtualization Enables Endpoints to Protect Themselves by Design

Presented by: Simon Crosby, CTO & Co-Founder, Bromium Inc.

Mobility, the consumerization of devices and networks, adoption of cloud based services, and ready access to the web lead inexorably toward a stark reality: IT is out of control. As a result, sophisticated attackers penetrate enterprise infrastructure with alarming ease. Security budgets are growing, but protection seems elusive, and locking down users makes them less productive and frustrated, leading to “shadow IT”.

Something is profoundly wrong. Even enterprises that use the most sophisticated security products cannot prevent compromises. Security vendors offer a seemingly endless succession of fancily named technologies that aspire to greater protection, but they gloss over a fatal flaw, namely the undeniable fact that the “detect to protect” paradigm has passed its sell-by date.

Luckily there is a silver lining to this cloud: Thanks to the relentless progress of Moore’s Law, every PC/Mac and mobile device already has CPU features that can enable it to protect itself by design, on untrusted networks and in the hands of unreliable users.

Micro-virtualization – an evolution of CPU-based hardware virtualization - is a new approach that uses hardware to enforce protection, without relying on detection. Each browser tab, document, attachment or file from detachable storage is automatically hardware isolated on the CPU, with no change to the user workflow. The PC automatically defeats each attack, staying gold. It automatically self-remediates by discarding the contents of each hardware-isolated task, and can safely run unpatched 3rd party applications – such as legacy Java.

In addition, the hardware-backed protection of micro-virtualization permits the device to automatically track the execution of malware, eliminating false alarms and delivering false-alarm free, real-time forensic insights – the needle instead of the haystack.

This talk will present a brief tour through the use of virtualization technologies to simplify management and delivery of secure end-user computing. It will cover in depth the concept of micro-virtualization, highlighting key differences from traditional VM based approaches. It will use live demos of attacks to show how introspection transforms forensics and eliminates remediation.

Key Take-Aways:

Over 70% of cypher attacks are unique to your organization.  Ultimately, the end point has to defend itself.  Micro-virtualization hardware isolates every application task using cpu features for virtualization.  It provides much better protection than conventional anti-virus software, HIPS, EMET, Rootlet detection and SMEP.  

What do Directors Expect from CIOs? What Should CIOs expect from Directors: Building better boards and better IT governance

Presented by: Dr. Michael Parent, Simon Fraser University 

For many companies, information technologies (IT) remain their single-largest capital investment – often exceeding investments in property, plant and equipment – combined!  As a result, IT tends to span the organization, cross functions, and fundamentally affect the way the enterprise operates. But you already know this…

One of the main challenges facing today’s CIO is Board and Director engagement. How can you ensure your projects and priorities receive enough attention from the Board, and in turn, how can the Board have comfort with its oversight of IT-related issues. After all, most IT investment decisions that go to the Board for approval have an enterprise-wide impact, and concomitant risk. How do you ensure your Directors appreciate this risk-benefit trade-off?

After all, no one likes surprises…especially bad ones.

This interactive session will focus on the role of the Board with respect to IT-led business transformation decisions; the role and responsibilities of Directors as they pertain to making such decisions; to protecting them once they have been implemented; and to how CIOs can successfully create and manage constructive relationships with their Boards.

Specifically, we will seek to answer three key questions:

  1. How can tomorrow’s CIO build and sustain a successful, constructive relationship with the Board and Lead Director(s)?
  2. What do Directors, in turn, expect from CIOs.
  3. What should you, the CIOs expect from your Boards?

Constructive understanding of how information technologies should be overseen; the questions Directors and CIOs should ask of each other; the answers they should expect to receive; and how the CIO can educate the Board on an ongoing basis with respect to IT-led enterprise risks and opportunities.

Key Take-Aways:

Michael Parent, Professor, Management and Director, Governance and Security at SFU, urged CIOs to be explicit, incisive and consistent in communicating all elements of “LTSCDA” to their boards on each and every IT initiative. LTSCDA is Long-Term Sustainable Competitively Differentiated Advantage. Tying IT investments to business value and risk is critical. 

Leading Transformational Change & High Performing Teams

Presented by: Adam McCormac, Executive Programs, Gartner; Jeff Wyton, Executive Partner, Gartner

Many organizations are looking at ways in which it can transform itself in the new digital economy. Furthermore, the leaders within the enterprise need to be  visionary, Leader and head coach of a well tuned, High Performing Team in an area of great fluidity. This workshop will focus on the role of the CIO and the key components required to deliver results at scale and at speed.

Key Take-Aways:

CIOs need to identify and develop strategies to meet the challenges of leading transformational change. (some bits deleted here). Resistance to change can come from many (factors) sources, and the resistance may be rational, personal, or emotional. Adam and Jeff introduce tactics such as identifying your personal brand and completing the Johari Window exercise with teams to build trust. Other important factors include being seen, producing results, being consistent, and having clear communication.

Digital Business Transformation, What it Means for the CIO

Presented by: Brian Baker, Advisor, CIO, Forrester

This session will synthesize crucial digital business and technology trends and highlight the most likely social, government, and market outcomes. Including what the CIO's role is in digital disruption.

Key Take-Aways:

Brian Baker of Forrester explained that no industry is immune from digital disruption, and all need much more than bolt-on technology to address it. It requires organizational transformation. Why start your digital strategy now? Because if you don’t do it, somebody else will! Drivers for CIOs are no longer about reducing cost, (with a few exceptions) but about growing revenues and helping to grow the customer base. Baker cited examples of change drivers from the retail industry, where customers now have easy access to online comparison data, and their loyalties can switch rapidly based on such things as delivery and return policies. Other industry examples cited were from fashion and high-tech aircraft. Recommendations: Start building your digital strategy with a SWOT analysis; map your digital capabilities and industry maturity; lay out specific steps for amelioration. 

What CEO’s want

Presented by Caroline Jellinck, Senior Client Partner, Korn Ferry

CEO’s are becoming increasingly aware that technology needs to be an executive partner in advancing the business agenda.  However, as the technical expert, not all CIO’s understand how to position themselves and their teams to meet these business expectations.  Learn what CEO’s expect of their CIO’s and technology teams and how to position yourself and your people for success at the table.

Key Take-Aways:

How can CIOs bridge the gap between the technical and business sides to deliver value to the organization?  From a CEO perspective the following measures are key: Stock price, EBIDA, Performance/Growth, Access to capital, effective decision making, engaged productive employee.  IT solutions are interwoven with all of these and CIO influence is critical.  The CIO growth path has three phases: Functional Expert, Transformational Leader and Emerging Business Leader.  Jellinck gave good advice on how to move toward the Emerging Business Leader Role – and noted that not everyone will be able or willing to make this transition.  The skill sets that CIOs need to exhibit are relationship management, innovation, business and communication skills. The presentation ended on a more practical note – with tips and advice on interviewing and resume preparation.   

The Wolf in CIO's Clothing

Presented by: Tina Nunno, Vice President & Gartner Fellow, Gartner

Are you predator or prey? This session, based on the recently released book of the same title, is based on the premise that CIOs are often in extreme situations, where normal management techniques simply will not work. IT is increasingly under pressure to drive business value and help the enterprise create competitive advantage, while dealing with increasing digital risks and challenges. Such an environment can drive enterprises to the “dark side”. By becoming a “Machiavellian Wolf” CIOs can shift from service provider to partner and leader, and to bring the enterprises back into the light. Attendees are encouraged to take the Wolf Quiz before the session at and find out their Extreme Animal Profile.

Key Take-Aways:

Here’s a scenario where “wolf” tactics may apply….You: "We don't have the resources or the budget right now, so we should wait" Them: "Make it happen." This is a situation many of us are all too familiar with - it’s about power, influence and politics.   What should you do when faced with a situation where traditional management techniques do not work? Tina walks through the difference between the "light" and "dark" side of leadership traits and how good leaders have to be ready to go to the extremes. She argues that choosing the middle ground often leaves leaders more vulnerable and that people do not like working for someone who is perceived to have no power since they cannot be protected. She then walks through the different Extreme Animal profiles and how their approach to power, manipulation, and warfare can help CIOs lead their teams to success by allowing them to adjust their leadership styles in extreme situations .