Newsletter #102 : Building a Tech Strategy and Anticipate the Need

June 14, 2021

CTO Academy deliver tailored leadership skills training and career development services for global tech leaders.

And we launch a new …

Hey everyone, it’s that Friday feeling again …

Hope you’ve had a great week and for those of you ending the month of Ramadan, Happy EID.

Next week we launch our monthly masterclass series with our Sanjay hosting a session on how to build an effective tech strategy. Highly recommend you signing up, more details below.

Next week we will also be re-launching our courses – updated lectures, fresh learning material and a new focus based on your feedback – watch this space.

I have little left to say but safe passage through the weekend and as ever, stay safe and savour that time with your friends and family.

Effective Tech Leaders, Anticipate The Need

Jim Mortensen is an experienced CTO/COO and also part of our US based team of Leadership Coaches. This week he wrote about the importance of leaders anticipating the need, a key skill for any tech leader.

“What if you could anticipate every problem, issue or obstacle in life before they occurred? You might not be able to avoid them, but you could at least plan and prepare for them, better mitigating the consequences.

While it’s clearly not possible to anticipate everything in life, it’s an effective leadership skill to be capable of anticipating more than most. The best leaders are forward-thinking and have the ability to anticipate the needs of their organization well in advance…….”

You can read the full article here.

Articles That Caught Our Eye This Week

Identifying Leaders So You Can Develop Them… When looking at how to develop good leaders, the first question has to be … “do you know what a good leader looks like?”

As you prepare to develop leaders, which type of person do you want them to be?
Do you want to know what you’re looking for in potential leaders and be able to find them?

Every person you bring onto your team will make you either better or worse. And every leader you develop will do the same.
Maybe that’s why Amazon founder Jeff Bezos remarked, “I’d rather interview 50 people and not hire anyone than hire the wrong person.” For a leader who develops leaders, there is something scarcer and much more important than ability. It is the ability to recognize ability. One of the primary responsibilities of any successful leader is to identify potential leaders.

Managing People: Is It Right For Me?... Anyone who has ever been a manager or leader will at some time have asked themselves this question, and it’s a particular issue for those of us not always great at delegating.

“What’s your management style? Ask this question in 2019 and you will most likely hear one of the many variants of a speech about servant leadership and unlocking people’s hidden potential. In fact, that too would be my answer of choice when asked point-blank. This is not very helpful if you are an aspiring manager trying to understand whether you are making the right career choice, or if you fell into a management position circumstantially, for example, due to the growth of the startup you founded, and you are now trying to be good at it.”

This article looks into the questions … What is people management really about? And how can I be a good manager? … with the author suggesting there are three answers to the first question, covering three fundamental aspects of people management on which servant leadership is built. Let’s look at each one, trying to answer the second question as we go along.

13 Leadership Lessons from Zoom Founder and CEO Eric Yuan…Fuelled by lockdowns and social distancing, a new way of communicating and collaborating with colleagues, clients and stakeholders emerged. Jason Nazar explains that he wanted to sit down with the leader of the most popular platform for bringing families, classrooms, and businesses together during the pandemic. This company grew so fast in the past year that it became its own verb — Zoom. Case in point: It went from having 10 million daily meeting participants in December 2019 to more than 300 million by April 2020. In the past year, Zoom became crucial to the education system, to celebrate holidays and to marking special moments like weddings.

Eric Yuan is helping people stay connected while reminding them that it’s never too late to pursue their dreams. Find out the moment Yuan’s career trajectory changed forever, the five things he did to evolve as a leader and other insightful leadership lessons from my hour-long conversation with Time’s 2020 Businessperson of the Year.

My $100 Billion Lack Of Commitment and Other Mistakes to Avoid When Launching Your First Tech StartUp... Saurabh Kumar started dreaming of starting his own business when in his 20s and the final year of business school. Then life happened – got a good job, moved from India to the US, got married, had kids and two decades flew by.

But when he was in his 40s he co-founded Rezolve.AI along with two other business school friends. By the time he started Rezolve.AI he had a lot of prior management experience in various mid and large companies – but as a first-time entrepreneur, he found it a steep learning curve.

“As an entrepreneur over the last few years, I have learned a lot from my own experiences as well as interacting with other founders and investors about better ways of starting your first technology venture. Let me share five key pitfalls you might want to stay clear of as you embark on launching your startup journey.” 


Thinking, Fast and Slow

You might have heard of this book before it’s been out a while, but it comes up often in discussion and during coaching sessions so we’ve pushed it up front again for those of you unfamiliar with it.

In Thinking, Fast and Slow, psychologist Daniel Kahneman takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think.

System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabilities—and also the faults and biases—of fast thinking, and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behaviour.

“This is an exceptional read. Very insightful about the workings of the human mind. There is some profound truth to be found on every single page. No padding. It is not a book that you are likely to be able to consume in a single session. If you think that we know everything about the mind then you will realize how much there is still to learn. Kahneman’s remarks about the wisdom of relying on experts and the interpretation of statistics are absolute gold dust. A Nobel Prize well deserved.”

Gary Vaynerchuk … One Life, No Regrets (perhaps relevant now, more than ever!)


CTO Academy Live Masterclass – starts next Weds 19th May

NEXT WEDS is our first Live Masterclass.
Our very own Sanjay Mistry will be delivering a half day deep dive into a topic that every senior technology leader needs to master … How to build a tech strategy, Aligned to the business plan

He will be covering the Purpose, Goal Setting, Planning and Budget behind a tech strategy.

Seats are still available but we have placed a limit on participants as it will be a live and interactive session and we want everyone to have an opportunity to interact with Sanjay and enjoy breakout sessions with other attendees.

In June we have Zoe Fragou delivering a fascinating masterclass on The Art of Negotiation and How to Always Win:Win … not a day goes by when we’re not negotiating in some form or another, and Zoe dives into the fact that this is a skill you need both inside and outside your business.

As an organizational psychologist and leadership coach, she has a fascinating insight into this topic and I really recommend you sign up. Again, places are limited so that everyone gets the opportunity to learn, engage and share with the host and cohort.

Find out more and purchase tickets via the banners below ….


The power of group coaching … 

CTO Academy Tribes is our group coaching and peer-2-peer support programme.

It’s a powerful way to learn and share knowledge alongside like minded peers, facing and negotiating similar challenges to you.

We have different tribes for established, early stage and aspiring CTOs with tech leaders joining us from Australia to Spain, Canada to South Africa. 

Come and find your tribe ….

Download Our Free eBook!

90 Things You Need To Know To Become an Effective CTO

CTO Academy Ebook - CTO Academy

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