CXO

From managing tomorrow's workforce to understanding quantum computing

CEO stories of the year - 2010

As we prepare to say goodbye to 2010, silicon.com takes a look back at the biggest CEO stories of the year.

Among the CEO stories making waves this year were columns on Indian outsourcing coming back to the West; a look at future team-management challenges; and some advice for big business from silicon.com's resident futurist, Peter Cochrane.

Cochrane got his teeth into the constant restructuring so beloved of big corporate entities, warning that reorganising is just a form of paralysis in disguise - essentially a whole lot of running around just to stand still: Peter Cochrane's Blog: Paralysed by constant restructuring.

What can be done to stem this going-nowhere tide? Trust in your workforce - to work wherever and however they choose. "Productivity overrides visible attendance," said Cochrane. "Chaotic markets, fast-changing technology, products and demand dictate a new fluidity of people and thinking. Old and rigid practices really are the kiss of death."

The management challenges of tomorrow also went under the microscope in a feature looking at how technology-enabled teamwork is set to change: Five ways to manage the team of tomorrow. Expect more remote working and videoconferencing at the very least.

The CEO crystal ball gazing didn't stop there either. IT departments will shrink in next five years, according to silicon.com's CIO Jury, as cloud computing and outsourcing suck the techie lifeblood out of the server-room.

"For many business systems currently run inhouse, the default option by 2015 will be the cloud," predicted Stephen Potter, CIO at World-Check.

Meanwhile headhunter Cathy Holley had some words of wisdom on how to improve the relationship between the CEO and the CIO in: Ways to ensure CIOs and CEOs hit it off.

silicon.com also featured an interesting look at how Indian offshoring is coming much closer to home - a movement driven by the overt politicisation of job losses and creation as a result of the tough realities of the recession. Saritha Rai, silicon.com's India-based columnist, looked at how Indian outsourcers are responding to a political backlash against offshoring by setting up nearshore operations in locations such as Northern Ireland: Offshoring: Why India's outsourcers are setting up shop in the West.

Want to know the secrets of successful outsourcing? silicon.com columnist Mark Kobayashi-Hillary had some classic advice, gleaned from lessons he's learned from outsourcers and their clients over the years, in Secret to successful outsourcing: Be open about your ambitions. Partnership and shared objectives are key but being open about what you want is crucial, he said, so ditch the sales talk.

Another Kobayashi-Hillary column flagged up a problematic loophole in UK carbon laws, warning that companies may simply seek to outsource or even offshore their carbon emissions rather than tackle them at source unless the law is tightened up: Have UK carbon laws failed to see outsourcing loophole?.

For CEOs seeking to get their head round some serious science, our Quantum Computing: Cheat Sheet had the answers - or a modicum of certainty at least about this most uncertain of topics.

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