30 Oct Gartner’s Symposium/ITxpo
Gartner, Inc. held a very successful Symposium/ ITxpo at the Dolphin and Swan Hotels in Orlando, Florida for CIOs and other IT executives. The event opened on Monday October 19, 2009 and closed Thursday October 22, 2009.
The show was billed as “Learning about cutting edge solutions from the best of breed providers and up-and-comers in an atmosphere where knowledge is the priority” for CIOs and IT Executives.
From my vantage point they greatly exceeded their objectives and the content was superb. Attendance was up over their last year’s event to some 5,600 people this year. More important was the dramatic increase in the number of CIOs who numbered some 1,600 executives this year, up from approximately 900 CIOs for their 2008 show.
They had workshops for CIOS, end-user case studies, and contract negotiation clinics and excellent very high level guest speakers from Hewlett-Packard, Google and Microsoft.
Gartner held many interesting and extremely informative workshops covering most all aspects of the CIOS challenges and one in particular, the CIO Leadership: “Making and Surviving Executive Decisions,” conducted by Tina Nunno, VP of Research for Gartner was outstanding.
Tina stressed how important it is for the CIO to communicate what their expectations are to their staff when implementing a high risk and complex IT project.
Getting buy-in by good communications among the IT staff and not just barking orders to them greatly increases the chances of implementing a successful project. Tina also discussed “best practices” by giving examples of CIOs by name and company who succeeded in implementing a high risk and politically complex projects by allowing their IT staffs to become an integral part of the entire process.
Mark Hurd, the Chairman and CEO of Hewlett-Packard gave a very interesting talk on his many challenges of running a global company with 117 billion in annual revenues and over 300 thousand employees.
When he became the CEO of HP in 2005 the company had many more IT people than Salespeople, and during his five year tenure that has changed to now there are more Salespeople than IT staff.
He talked about how he has reduced to level of executive reports from 12 layers of management to eight, and still will continue to streamline and reduce the number of layers.
This was my fifth year attending this Gartner event, and I remember in 2005 at their conference listening to Mark Hurd talk when he had been Chairman and CEO for HP for only six months.
The difference in his presentation was dramatic because he has successfully implemented many good changes at HP in his five years as CEO, and now they are the largest computer organization in terms of top line revenue in the world.
The real highlight of the show in my opinion was the late afternoon talk on Wednesday October 21, 2009 given by Eric Schmidt, Chairman and CEO of Google, Inc.
In essence Eric stressed how the distinctions between audio, video and text on the Internet are being blurred, and that Chinese with be the dominant language of the Internet in five years. “All of these distinctions will completely go away,” he said.
Google will be developing operating systems, applications, enterprise platforms and having all this run in various cloud configurations, without locking a user into a closed environment. Schmidt stressed how Google will not ever try to keep users captive like the current large software companies do.
Given Google’s large cash positions expect them to be purchasing companies that will assist them in moving software on demand and at incredibility low prices that will disrupt the entire current cost structure of the enterprise market.
This conference is one of the best in the entire computing industry and I already look forward to next year’s program. My Colleague Mike Klein Founder and CEO of WTN Media, has been attending this conference for twelve years now.
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