Conference Updates

Gold Coast, Australia, September 12, 2022

Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo 2022 APAC: Day 1 Highlights

We are bringing you news and highlights from Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo, taking place this week on the Gold Coast, Australia. Below is a collection of the key announcements and insights coming out of the conference.

On Day 1 of the conference, we are covering sessions on how CIOs can advance digital dexterity in the executive team, how to achieve strategic value with AI, diversity equity and inclusion mistakes to avoid, and the CIO guide to sustainable IT and ESG.

Key Announcements

Advancing Digital Dexterity Across Executive Leadership

Presented by Neil Osmond, Distinguished VP, Advisory, Gartner

As enterprises become increasingly digital, all CxOs are now accountable for technology leadership. However, not all senior executives are ready to contribute. In this session, Neil Osmond, Distinguished VP, Advisory at Gartner, discussed practical approaches for CIOs to assess and elevate the digital dexterity of business leaders.

Key Takeaways

  • “To accelerate and run a successful digital organization, enterprise leaders need high digital dexterity — they must understand digital opportunities and choose the right strategies to create and deliver new value.”

  • “When organizations have high digital dexterity, the likelihood of a successful digital transformation increases by 3.3 times. However, most leaders are not digitally dexterous.”

  • “Executive leaders need to change their behaviors to become digitally dexterous. This is the difference between telling you how to ride a bike and you actually riding a bike. They need to "try on” these behaviors.”

  • “As a CIO, you can take an active role in developing digital dexterity in your enterprise leaders. Shift focus from educating them to enabling behavior changes and guiding them toward self-discovery. It’s less about technical understanding.”

  • “Leaders can be motivated to change their behaviors by a range of emotional incentives such as competitive spirit and the desire to enable their teams to adopt digital ways of working.”

  • “Much of the next wave of digital business depends on the readiness of enterprise leaders to not only make decisions but also to shoulder responsibilities. Foster an environment in which leaders can build their own ability and ambition.”

  • “Expose leaders to the process of opportunity identification, not just new ideas. Create a safe place for them to share and learn.”

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Achieve Strategic Value in AI With Seven Practices

Presented by Sharon Hakkennes, Senior Director Analyst, Gartner 

Realizing the value and reaping the benefits are the top issues facing leaders executing AI projects. In this session, Sharon Hakkennes, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, explored seven practices that enable leaders to productize AI at scale and unlock value from their initiatives.

Key Takeaways

  • Consider AI for every project and assign budget accordingly. For now, adding AI as a topic at every project’s beginning leads to more mature, broader employment.” 
  • “The language of business builds trust and clarity, so use financial analysis metrics or business KPIs in all cases, but not always ROI. Employ an experimental mindset and document any incremental benefit.”
  • Let the AI team define and adjust success metrics. Giving them autonomy allows for more powerful use of AI. Remember: those with a strategic position reporting to CxOs deliver features, projects and products more broadly in the organization.”
  • Look at employing a hybrid team, with a central group and rapid response teams. This helps blend enforcement and persuasion.”
  • Hire a mix of internal and external talent to more broadly apply AI in your organization. More mature organizations get there and stay there through adept use of talent flexibility.”
  • Software engineering and AI must have formal interconnections, so link both with formal structure and procedure.”
  • “Know the skills you have and always fill any gaps by training business units in tools and impacts. When business units trust techniques and are ready for them, organizations are 1.6x more likely to achieve strategic levels of AI maturity.”
  • “If an organization does none of these seven practices, the likelihood of achieving strategic AI drops by 90%. So pick at least one to make a difference.”


7 Big DEI Mistakes and How CIOs Can Avoid Them

Presented by Jasleen Kaur, Senior Principal, Advisory, Gartner

Common but avoidable mistakes can keep organizations from advancing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). In this session, Jasleen Kaur, Principal Advisor at Gartner, showed CIOs the DEI pitfalls to avoid  and how to develop a measurable action plan that leads to progress on this key organizational priority.

Key Takeaways

  • “DEI is no longer HR’s job – we all have roles to play. As we play these roles, we’re likely to make mistakes. We have to accept that DEI is a journey and we’re all learning as we go.”

  • “We know DEI is a top priority and the benefits are clear. But there are some dark clouds ahead that we need to be ready for. A Gartner survey found 42% of employees have a growing resentment toward organizational DEI efforts.”

  • “Employees that reported high fairness in their organization also reported 6% higher performance as well as 27% higher retention.”

  • “Based on thousands of conversations, we’ve identified seven big mistakes executives are making when it comes to DEI: 

    • Thinking they know exactly what the problem is (but they haven’t asked)
    • Assuming that equity and equality are the same 
    • Having a laundry list of things to achieve 
    • Ignoring the risks and opportunities that hybrid work poses to DEI efforts
    • Missing the backlash on DEI
    • Having an ambiguous DEI strategy or none at all
    • Weak individual accountability towards accomplishing DEI goals
  • “Meet with your leadership team to review these mistakes and identify the ones you are guilty of, so you can avoid them in future.”

The CIO Guide to Sustainable IT and ESG

Presented by Autumn Stanish, Principal Analyst, Gartner

Sustainability and ESG are now a central strategic pillar for many enterprises. The CIO and IT organization have an important role to play in support of the enterprise achieving its sustainability and ESG goals. In this session, Autumn Stanish, Principal Analyst at Gartner, provided a roadmap for CIOs and IT leaders looking to develop a sustainable IT strategy and program.

Key Takeaways

  • “You have the power to transform IT's impact into something that not only avoids harming people or the planet, but actually drives the ESG agenda forward for the organization.”

  • “Despite the common belief that data center operations and cloud are the most significant impact of IT, it is actually the embodied carbon of endpoint devices that accounts for nearly half of overall IT Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions in most enterprises.”

  • “Sustainability and digital business are not at odds with one another; they go hand in hand in making the business more prosperous.”

  • “It is crucial that IT leaders select the right vendors and products to ensure the circularity of their technology.”

  • “Baselining the organization’s current environmental footprint is the single most critical step you will take on your sustainable journey. This step has the power to determine your ambition, your budget, your timeline. Success hinges on getting this right.”

  • “These will be important steps for the short-term, but in the longer term, we have to have a more strategic approach to make large-scale improvements within IT. For this, we need continuous sustainability management.”

About Gartner

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