As with many key business functions, effective cybersecurity professionals need to hold strong relationships with non-IT stakeholders. The influence of the Chief Information Security Officer needs to be understood, respected and adhered to, so cultivating rapport with management and executives who are responsible for decision making and implementing security risk strategies is vital.
While experience in their current role, experience in their current industry and high industry regulations are keys to successful CISO output, the effectiveness of an organization’s CISO can be determined by their ability to execute against a set of four outcomes:
Functional leadership: As the leader of the information security function, CISO leadership is imperative in meeting security objectives.
Information security service delivery: With virtually every business capability today enabled by technology, CISOs must not only protect their organization, but also help it meet its objectives through delivery of quality services that support business objectives.
Scaled governance: Distributed decision making has expanded the volume and variety of information risk decisions that cyber risk experts need to support, so a successful CISO will need to be able to scale governance to meet the demand and increase cooperation with information security recommendations.
Enterprise responsiveness: In addition to ensuring governance, CISOs must cultivate an environment where decision makers understand and care about information security and consider security implications in their decision making. They must champion the importance of information risk and cybersecurity effectively.