For many technologists, the ultimate goal of their career is to ascend into management and become either a CIO, CTO, or even CEO. It’s a goal that can take many years to materialize, with multiple paths, trials and decisions along the way. Questions that I often hear from technologists on this topic include:
- How do I reach one of these top executive positions?
- Is there only one path available to a technologist who wants to enter the C-suite? If there’s more than one (editor’s note: there is), what are they and which one is right for me?
- What are the things I need to do now to position myself in the right way to move into management and upper management roles?
Paul Farnsworth, chief technology officer of DHI Group, the parent company of Dice, is in a great position to give you some crucial insight into those issues. In this latest episode of the podcast, he talks about his own journey to the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) role. Give it a listen, especially when we break down his most crucial takeaways at the end:
As you’ll find out during the podcast episode, those technology professionals interested in a management track—whether that’s CTO or project leader—need to develop both their technical and “soft” skills, and focus on finding opportunities that match their skillset and outlook. During Paul’s career, he’s seen everything the tech industry has to offer, and his path is a great example of building a career step-by-step in an environment experiencing an incredible amount of change. If you’re experienced in adapting to change, you’ll be fine.
While you progress in your own career, it’s also important to keep in mind that there are different styles of leadership. For example, if you’re a technologically inclined leader, you should aim for companies that are receptive to your approach and outlook. That seems to be a more effective recipe for success than trying to adjust your leadership style to fit an environment. As with any other role in tech, there are lots of opportunities out there that will potentially match your skill set, experience, and needs.
Thank you for tuning into Tech Connects; we’ll be back with new podcast episodes each month. And as always, if you have suggestions for what we cover on the show or you’d like to be a future guest, send us a note.