From fighting with hard hardware to beating the just-a-cost problem...
...explaining to the end user why enterprise IT cannot perform to the level of consumer IT, or facilitate a policy of bring-your-own IT for workers and support departments buying their own technology.
3. IT perceived as a drain on budget
The most common reason given by organisations as to why they sacked their CIO is they do not believe the head of IT is adding value to the business, according to Boyden's Maxwell Davies, who said IT is often considered just another cost.
To combat this, CIOs need to get better at explaining why certain costs are necessary on the one hand, and develop better commercial skills on the other.
"The really world-class CIOs have got that real business acumen, commercial appreciation and an understanding that you've got to add value to the business and in order to do that you've got to understand what they are trying to achieve," she said.
4. Delivering IT projects behind schedule
Overrunning IT projects are a sore spot for everyone involved, but unfortunately for the CIO, they are likely to be the one bearing the brunt of dissatisfaction.
Delayed IT projects could be avoided if CIOs get better at saying no.
"It's no good if CIOs listen to the clients and say yes to every single thing they want, and as a result the project is three years over the time they wanted it to be delivered in and way overbudget and overcomplicated because [the CIOs] were just order-takers," said Maxwell Davies.
CIOs should be clear about what is possible and what can be delivered in the required time frame, and not be afraid to say that some things cannot be done. While the client may be dissatisfied, it's better to manage expectations from the beginning of a project.
5. The easy scapegoat
While some CIOs may think they can avoid the office politics by keeping out of business discussions, such a stance can make them an easy target if projects where IT has been involved subsequently run into problems.
"It is very easy for the CIO to be scapegoated. If something goes wrong it's very easy to blame it on one individual and say, 'It's because the system is not working', particularly if the individual has not built strong relationships and has not been politically clever and astute," Maxwell Davies said.
To avoid becoming the fall guy, CIOs need to...