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IT careers: What makes a beginner stand out to the CIO
Young IT talent can't skate by on tech prowess alone. Eight CIOs share their take on the skills that impress
For young IT talent, there’s a lot to love about a career in technology. The promises of rewards are enticing, as businesses compete to hire the best IT talent to solve complex problems. But these days, a degree alone isn’t going to cut it. Sure, it may get you hired, but if you want to get noticed by the boss, you’ll need to bring more to the table than technical skills.
We asked eight CIOs to share the traits and skills that they value most on their IT teams. Not one of them mentioned in-depth technical training or special certificates. Instead, these CIOs discussed people who were exceptional team players, or who raised their hands for a special assignment, or who reached out to help someone below them – those were the folks who stood out to management. Dive in for more ways to stand out among your IT peers – and earn the rewards.
Be a team player
Think before you talk
Maturity can really grab leadership’s attention, particularly in someone early in their career. Sonic, like most companies, looks to promote from within. It’s a win-win for both the company and the associate. It’s a no-brainer when you can provide someone opportunity to grow and continue their career with your organization. In order to step up and take advantage of these opportunities, maturity and flexibility are key.” - Chris Maritato, CIO, Sonic Automotive
Solve a business problem, unprompted
Volunteer for special projects
Pragmatically, young talent must master their current role with excellence, but also bring forward innovative ideas for transforming, automating, or even eliminating the work they’re doing. I look for people who want to volunteer to do special projects, because folks that are just filling a job tend to get lost – the work just happens. When people have passion, energy, and thoughtful creativity that says, 'I want to try to bring something new here,' those are the folks that stand out.” - Tom Miller, CIO, Anthem
[ Want to develop your EQ? Read our related article: Top soft skills for IT leaders and how to master them. ]
Support others throughout the team
Get out of the safety zone
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