Gartner Research

Master Saying 'No' at Scale for CIOs

Published: 06 June 2018

ID: G00361704

Analyst(s): Ian Cox , Tina Nunno , Ed Gabrys


In the digital world, CIOs must find systematic ways to say "no" to nonstrategic technology requests. Mastering and developing a set of "systematic no" techniques can help CIOs say "no" to their enterprises at scale, and help keep their focus on strategic initiatives.

Table Of Contents


  • There Are Three Optimal Outcomes for the "Systematic No"
    • Prevention: "Systematic No" Efficiently Prevents Multiple Events From Happening
    • Messaging: "Systematic No" Consistently Sends a Specific Set of Leadership Messages to the Enterprise
    • Relationships: "Systematic No" Creates or Maintains Positive Relationships Across the Enterprise
  • Use Four "Systematic No" Tactics as a Funnel to Efficiently Filter Out Potential Conflicts
    • Systematize the "Conditional No"
    • Systematize the "Questioning No"
    • Systematize the "Big-Picture No"
    • Systematize the "Toy Store No"
  • Master the "Systematic No" to Optimize Decision-Making

Gartner Recommended Reading

©2021 Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Gartner is a registered trademark of Gartner, Inc. and its affiliates. This publication may not be reproduced or distributed in any form without Gartner’s prior written permission. It consists of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization, which should not be construed as statements of fact. While the information contained in this publication has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, Gartner disclaims all warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of such information. Although Gartner research may address legal and financial issues, Gartner does not provide legal or investment advice and its research should not be construed or used as such. Your access and use of this publication are governed by Gartner’s Usage Policy. Gartner prides itself on its reputation for independence and objectivity. Its research is produced independently by its research organization without input or influence from any third party. For further information, see Guiding Principles on Independence and Objectivity.

Already have a Gartner Account?

Purchase this Document

To purchase this document, you will need to register or sign in above

Become a client

Learn how to access this content as a Gartner client.