The Machiavellian CIO: Morality versus reality

The discrepancy, or gap, between doing and achieving is a persistent problem in business. Although every experienced leader knows that functional success is fundamental to sound management, doing a good job doesn’t necessarily lead to career recognition or personal reward.

Niccolo Machiavelli, one of the most intriguing political philosophers in Western history, focused relentlessly on the question of achieving political success, even at the sacrifice of conventional social morality.

Because he places accomplishment, even for the greater good, above short-term moral considerations, Machiavelli’s name is associated with deceit, treachery, and ruthless manipulation. Despite this, his writings provide penetrating insights into of organizational behavior.

That’s why I found it fascinating — and discomforting — to read a new book by Gartner analyst, Tina Nunno, with the intriguing title, The Wolf in CIO’s Clothing: A Machiavellian Strategy for Successful IT Leadership.


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