Do IT and management skills coincide?

by | Aug/4/2010

I recently spoke to a CEO who was incredibly frustrated with his IT professional, who is incapable of managing his IT assistant successfully. In fact, in these times when organizations are having difficulty recruiting qualified IT professionals, this CEO was considering firing this professional who is enthusiastic, knowledgeable, devoted, and highly skilled technically—even though he is not the best manager.

Fortunately for the CEO, after our conversation, he decided not to terminate the IT professional and keep him on board. The CEO will arrange management training for the IT professional.

In my experience, not all of the very best IT professionals are also excellent leaders and managers. Expecting all IT professionals to also be good at management reminds me a little bit of the flying cars, or amphibious vehicles. Those vehicles are pretty good at both, but not excellent at either.

Although I have met a few, should we expect IT professionals to be good managers? Many of the C-level executives I speak to feel this is a reasonable expectation. Please post your comments on this blog.