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Manchester City Council CIO Bob Brown interview: Customer-centric IT alignment

Edward Qualtrough | Dec. 13, 2016
From service desk to CIO - Manchester City Council's Bob Brown on vendor management, CIO leadership, IT skills, and aligning IT with the strategic goals of the council

"I think one of the big challenges that CIOs have, but particularly here for me, is continuation of the significance of what the department does and the role that the CIO," Brown said. "It's a unique position I hold here in Greater Manchester and one that I think some are still finding hard to understand.

"But no CIO will exist without continuing to deliver and needing to do something on a regular basis that demonstrates his or her value.

"And don't get me wrong, you don't report to the Chief Exec without the CEO feeling that that's a valued thing to do."

Furthermore, amid the transformational changes that Brown says are going to happen in Manchester over the next few years, the CIO is in a unique position to play a key leadership role in a new style of organisation.

"At the council people are gravitating towards a new leadership style, a new way of working, a new engagement ability, a transparency in terms of how you work," said Brown, the only member of Manchester City Council's senior executive team whose glass fishbowl office in the middle of his team is not shut off from the rest of their team.

"You've got to be seen. Leadership for me is by example in many aspects. If you are not visible, and you hide behind email or a telephone - you're largely irrelevant these days. People will find a way of doing things behind your back or they'll find a way without having to engage."

Source: CIO UK 

 

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