Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series

In the world of  technology we tend to use either really big words, really small words and/or acronyms.

What do you think of when you think of  ‘the cloud’ what do you think of?  Do you think about Amazon‘s EC2 or S3 or do you think about  “Parallel and Distributed Processing”?  Both could be right but neither are instructive to the ‘business’ user.  For that matter, is “the cloud” instructive to the business? Probably not.

The New CIO & Language

There’s a lot of talk in the business world about finding IT leaders who can speak to the business. I agree wholeheartedly…but I also think the business needs to learn to speak to the IT world too….but I’ve covered that in detail in a post titled Information Technology Leadership and Alignment. Moving on.

To help align business and IT, The New CIO needs to first look at the language of IT.  Get rid of the big words….and perhaps the small words if they aren’t clear enough.  Look at your IT group’s language to make sure acronyms and tech-jargon are purged from the external facing documentation and communication.  Take a long look at what you communicate to the organization and how you communicate to make sure you aren’t letting the tech-speak take over.

Want to really take it up a notch and make sure you’re communicating what the organization needs to hear? Bring in a marketer and a   communications person to build an IT marketing and communication plan for your team.  Your organization has marketing plans for how you’ll attack the market, why can’t you have one for how you’ll communicate to the rest of the organization?

Be careful though…you don’t want to get too far into business language or you’ll end up using the same marketing/business jargon that every other group within your organization uses.  Keep it simple and real and you’ll be fine.

Next time the CEO asks you “what’s this cloud computing thing I keep hearing about?”, how will you respond?  Big words or the right words?

The New CIO is a weekly article about the challenges facing today’s CIO as well as what can be done to prepare for future challenges. Join me next week for another article in the series.

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Eric D. BrownMike SchaffnerCharles H. GreenEdward WilliamsTechSquirt » Blog Archive » InformationWeek First B2B Tech Media Brand to Launch on Kindle Recent comment authors
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Just published – Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series http://bit.ly/3eMgBb

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[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Eric D. Brown. Eric D. Brown said: Just published – Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series http://bit.ly/3eMgBb […]

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[…] Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series (ericbrown.com) […]

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RT @ericdbrown Just published – Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series http://bit.ly/3eMgBb

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How the words IT people use can help/hinder them in getting work done. Thoughtful piece by @ericdbrown http://j.mp/3crGkM

Eric D. Brown
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Hi Shaw – Thanks for the comment.

Getting 'buy in' is key to getting anyone to feel the need for urgency. Without buy-in and ownership of an issue, the urgency will never emrege.

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thanks to @MikeSchaffner for sharing my latest New CIO Series post titled Don’t let the big (or small) words win http://bit.ly/3eMgBb

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Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series http://bit.ly/2sUAJ1

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[…] Don’t let the big (or small) words win – The New CIO Series (ericbrown.com) […]

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