Not everyone is cut out to be a CIO. You need certain physical attributes.

Your shoulders must be broad to carry the burden of the IT and operations department, your feet must be nimble to dodge the procurement tripwires and booby traps, your eyes must be like the eagle’s to spot distant but incoming risks and your heart must be made of stone for truly everyone thinks you’re a complete idiot.


CIO survival tips: Buying cake for employees is not enough to win your workers overPhoto: Natasha Lomas this week uncovered eight of the main reasons everyone seems to hate the CIO. Luckily it also has a few suggestions on how to win back a few of the haters and none of them involve buying cakes on Fridays.

Technology has always been a source of tension in the office and with the increasing consumerisation of technology, plus the evolution of humanity into a tetchy and unreasonable sedentary mammal, things are getting worse.

As the figurehead of the department, the CIO is directly in the firing line. Don’t despair. Stand proud and let the Round-Up take you through some of the most common problems and solutions, with a few extra suggestions the Round-Up has thought up all by itself.

The consumerisation of technology means most staff think they know everything. With children this can be amusing and charming. With the head of marketing and communications, it’s painful and embarrassing.

The answer? Be zen. If the human resources team question your SAN deployment then welcome that diversity of opinion. Set up forums to allow people to share their thoughts and ideas. Give the workforce a voice. Just delegate the chairing of the forum to a deputy.

A second problem is the success of Apple. Thanks to the Cupertino giant and arch-rival Google, everyone thinks technology is easy. Consumer technology is, or at least it appears to be. This is the magic that Apple and Google weave. They hide the complexity from the user and reduce technology to shiny buttons. No harm in this as it makes people more interested in technology, but sadly interest does not equate to understanding.

Your zen CIO tip is try to explain to the end user how enterprise tech works differently, or start a policy of bring-your-own IT for workers and support departments buying their own technology. Then give them back their broken down old notebooks when the CRM fails to work properly on their flash new tablet. Kick it around the office a bit first, though, just to show them who’s boss.

There are plenty more genuine tips on winning over your peers in the article on and all will help you to stop appearing a complete idiot. Unless you are a complete idiot, in which case the Round-Up can’t help you…

Social snooping

Social media is all pervasive in business. Marketing folk love it. Management hate it. Now it’s even affecting the human resources team, which is annoying because it’s cutting into their nap time.

Bosses have been warned that misusing social media tools – for example, to find out what employees are saying about the company online or to sneak a peek at job applicants – is a no-no.

Peeking at applicants is a particular problem. In reality, the onus is on…

…employers to self-regulate and act responsibly. In other words, to have a little faith in people.

A spirited think piece on the issue lists three more reasons why nosey-parker bosses should refrain from poking the profiles of would-be employees, and the Round-Up is in full agreement.

Firstly, everyone has fun, sometimes. Generation Y is much more open with personal data than the previous generation, so live with it, Grandpa. Just because they’ve posted pictures of themselves doing tequila slammers while wearing a pair of comedy breasts doesn’t mean you didn’t. You can remember your Fresher’s Week right? Exactly. Or maybe you can’t. Same difference.

Secondly, why should people have to keep everything private? Everyone is entitled to share if they want. The responsibility is back on the bosses to keep themselves from snooping, prying and tut-tutting. An individual shouldn’t make all the fun bits invisible out of fear that a future employer might be peeking at holiday snaps. So keep your beak out, boss.

Finally, employers could miss out too. Sure, that person is dressed as a tiger while drinking bright blue shots, but that doesn’t mean he or she isn’t a damn fine DBA.

Of course, if he or she gets the job and then gets up to the same shenanigans in the office, don’t blame the Round-Up…

Finally this Friday…

When you’re away from work on the weekend, do you miss technology? The Round-Up rather suspects you do.

Do your eyes grow moist thinking of the paper on cloud services you’re preparing for the board? The twinkling lights and serpentine cables of the server room? The sound of a busy service desk in full swing?

Of course you do and there’s nothing wrong with missing technology on the weekend, no matter what your exasperated partner tells you. IT is in your blood, IT is part of your DNA.

However, the Round-Up’s here to tell you that there’s absolutely no need to miss out on technology on the weekend thanks to a spiffing list of technology-themed days out to keep you entertained on your next day out of the office.

Naturally, there are a smattering of museums: London’s Science Museum, the Museum of Science and Industry and the less known Porthcurno Telegraph Museum are all houses of delight for the self-respecting science geek. But there’s plenty of other stuff too- check out the full list: it sure beats DIY as a plan for the weekend.