Bonnie Hagemann MES keynoteBonnie Hagemann discusses whether the title of CIO is appropriate or a hindrance to an IT leader’s career and shares helpful tips for how technology leaders can expand their role in an organization.

What’s in a name?

More than you realize.

Many IT leaders wonder if their chief information officer job titles put them at a disadvantage when it comes to advancing in their careers beyond that point.

Bonnie Hagemann agrees with this notion.

Hagemann is the CEO of Executive Development Associates. During her Midsize Enterprise Summit Fall 2018 conference keynote, Hagemann said the ‘CIO’ title itself is not a detriment, but it does point to someone who is focused solely on the company’s internal infrastructure.

Hagemann says that if she was vying for a job title, she would look for one has a broader reach – such as chief technology officer or chief digital officer.

“Getting your title is part of the art of managing your career.”

However, there is more to managing one’s career than figuring out the most appropriate job title.

Hagemann suggests today’s CIO look for opportunities to take on additional leadership responsibilities beyond technology.

Hagemann also suggests filling any leadership gap within your company.

“There are leadership gaps all over the place. The second you see people floundering, step in and show that you can be a leader.”

Hagemann says IT leaders can also advance their skills by sitting on different boards.

For people that want to become CEOs, sit on boards to get experience dealing with boards of directors. That way, if the day ever comes, you’ll be primed for the job title of CEO.

There are a lot of factors today’s CIO needs to take into consideration when thinking about taking the next step in their professional careers. However, if they can master one thing at a time and expand their horizons beyond technology, they will be well on their way to opening up more opportunities for themselves.