Why is IT strategy hard to define for most folks?

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Regional Director in Education, 11 - 50 employees
Well, when deciding IT strategy
We must look for all aspects, also the expansion and risk management aspect.

When defining IT strategy, we have to foresee the cyber and data security aspects, also the scalability, so defining IT strategy becomes difficult.
CTO in Healthcare and Biotech, 11 - 50 employees
Because you are playing with uncertainty here and some folks can't manage it. 

This is like playing chess versus a grandmaster, even though you might plan your attack or defense, you might not foresee in the future all the moves the grandmaster will do. When an unexpected move is made by your opponent, you either freeze without not knowing what to do or you play based on your planning or you play the best you can in this uncertainty.

Is the same as defining an IT strategy, uncertainty will always appear at unexpected times and how you cope with it will help you define it.
VP, Actuarial Information Technology in Finance (non-banking), 5,001 - 10,000 employees
IT strategy needs to balance pure IT goals with business goals.  Often, IT tends to favor internal projects (infrastructure, security, data governance) without considering the business needs and priorities.  The business needs to drive IT functions.  Without this focus, IT might drift off target and misdirect resources.  The fast-evolving nature of technology makes it difficult to plan direction for more than a few years.
Sr. Managing Director in Finance (non-banking), 5,001 - 10,000 employees
IT Strategy is hard to define for most folks : could be because:
- they are doing it first time (haven’t done it earlier)
- they are technology focused and business pays the bills
- technology land scape changes at much faster pace compared to other fields
- uncertainty adds to it ( who knew remote work will take over on-site work)
- external unknown threats: cyberattacks etc. changes things
Vice President / IT Services / Digital Workplace leader in Software, 10,001+ employees
IT Strategy is very difficult to define many times because it is easy to get scope creep.   Unless you have a very refined scope, strategy starts having dependencies on so many other areas, that you also end up adding them to your strategy and before you know it, you are stuck in a frustrated loop of what your core strategy is.   Also, with strategy comes dollar spends and if you are handcuffed up front my finance to limit spending, strategy ends up being impacted as you start adjusting your strategy to match what potential spend you can get.  
Fractional CIO in Software, 2 - 10 employees
IT strategy is balancing business requirements, risk, resources, time frame, and costs. Most users expect that they can get their requirements with no/low risk, only using existing in-house IT resources,  asap, and with minimal cost.  We know this is not normally true. So we have to explain what the complexities of the project are and why meeting the business requirement may not be as easy as they expect.
Executive Architect in Healthcare and Biotech, 10,001+ employees
A large part of the challenge is that many business leaders still see IT as overhead which should be targeted for cost reduction.  And certainly cost optimization should be part of an IT strategy.  As Enterprise Architects we posit that virtually every organization's IT strategy must be integrated with a business strategy that leverages digital transformation.  While technical debt must be retired, replacement approaches must not simply lift and shift old solutions. Institutions need the vision to continually redefine their business models, and leverage emerging technologies to stay competitive and relevant.
CTO in Software, 11 - 50 employees
Because it is extremely complex. Having said that, I recommend this book on overall strategy


Chief Technology Officer in Finance (non-banking), 11 - 50 employees
Most businesses do not revolve around their IT strategy.

IMHO IT Strategies exist to achieve what the business people say they want to achieve.

So people who are not great at strategy are giving the IT folks direction.. which then changes every few years as the technology changes and the business people are fired/moved on/promoted/leave and new people come in with different ideas/agendas. It's hard to do great work like this.

CIO in Media, 2 - 10 employees
Finding the right amount of stakeholders, but not too many, to allow you a good balance of defining a good roadmap.

You want to make sure you have the key people on-board to gather the feedback of what the needs are. You don't want to make it too many so no decisions are possible.

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Director Of Information Technology in Manufacturing, 501 - 1,000 employees
Following - interested in this question also.

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