• 9th ITMA CIO Study Trip, Digital Transformation - The Future of Smart Everything, Finland & Estonia

    9th ITMA CIO Study Trip, Digital Transformation - The Future of Smart Everything, Finland & Estonia

  • 34th ITMA Annual Dinner 2015

    34th ITMA Annual Dinner 2015

  • ITMA Lunch Time MTCS Talk on January 13, 2015

    ITMA Lunch Time MTCS Talk on January 13, 2015

  • ITMA Site Visit to SINGPOST: Friday, 20th March 2015

    ITMA Site Visit to SINGPOST: Friday, 20th March 2015

  • ITMA Event: Good Morning CIO! Breakfast Roundtable #2 - A Woman’s Touch to Startups on 19 November 2015

    ITMA Event: Good Morning CIO! Breakfast Roundtable #2 - A Woman’s Touch to Startups on 19 November 2015

  • ITMA Site Visit to ST Electronics, Friday 2nd October @ 2.15pm

    ITMA Site Visit to ST Electronics, Friday 2nd October @ 2.15pm

  • ITMA Event: The State of Cybersecurity: Uncovering the Hard Truths, Monday 22 June 2015

    ITMA Event: The State of Cybersecurity: Uncovering the Hard Truths, Monday 22 June 2015

  • ITMA Workshop by Prof Donald A Marchand - Digital Business Transformation - Friday, 24th April 2015

    ITMA Workshop by Prof Donald A Marchand - Digital Business Transformation - Friday, 24th April 2015

  • ITMA 21st IT Best Practices Seminar - 4 November 2015

    ITMA 21st IT Best Practices Seminar - 4 November 2015

  • 35th ITMA Annual Dinner 2016

    35th ITMA Annual Dinner 2016

Engaging the Board Series: ITMA CIO Executive Summit 2013 - 24 July 2013

  
Date and Time:Wednesday 24 July 2013, 02:00pm - 08:00pm
Place:Hotel Intercontinental Singapore
  



The 7th Annual ITMA CIO Executive Summit on July 24th, was an invigorating conference packed with illuminating talks, lively discussions between CIO panellists, and of course delicious food and drink. 

The keynote speaker for the afternoon was acclaimed businessman and entrepreneur John Sculley. As former President of PepsiCo and CEO of Apple, Mr Sculley experienced two distinct visions on how to build a business and he began his presentation by comparing the merits of both. In the corporate button-down environment of PepsiCo, the leadership was motivated strictly by profit and market share. In stark contrast, Apple never focused on competing with its rivals, rather the leadership wanted to reshape the world and create completely new industries.



Setting the tone of the talk, Mr Sculley dived into one important experience he had with the Board of Apple. Sculley’s mandate from the Board was to make the Apple II competitive in the market. In contrast, the only aim of the Chairman of the Macintosh Group – Steve Jobs – was to make beautiful products that would change the world. The Board had to content with the two competing visions and after the failure of the Macintosh Office, they ultimately decided to focus on selling the Apple II. Jobs disagreed with the decision and he was asked to step-down. The internal struggle at Apple was a classic example of a real-life crisis a Board would have to address. 

Next, Mr Sculley dwelled briefly on the contrasting ideologies between Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. While the former focused on creating exceptional user-experiences, the latter was ready to make any compromise to put computers in the hands of everyone. Despite their differences, Jobs and Gates were unified in their disregard for making money. It was never their motivation to become wealthy, it just happened to be a by-product of their ultimate goals. 



Shifting gears, Sculley then described the difficulties he faced as a non-technical CEO of a high-tech company. He was often in the unenviable position of having to make tough calls, with the line between a successful product and a failure being very thin. Indeed his most pertinent advice for current CEOs was to get a good mentor.

One of the most interesting lessons Sculley learnt from his years at Apple was the importance of a consistent company message. In fact he challenged the CIOs to go through their company and interview different employees and see whether they were getting the same message. 

In conclusion, Sculley remarked that the commoditization of technology meant that the half-life of innovation can now be measured in months. So, how can companies and CEOs build a successful business? According to Sculley, CEOs should build around a particularly domain expertise. 



Following Mr Sculley’s illuminating talk, CEO of Sakae Holdings Mr Douglas Foo spoke briefly about how he intends to make the brand the McDonalds or Starbucks of Sushi. In his talk, Mr Foo described how Sakae’s focus on automation has helped it remain profitable while providing a high-quality brand of sushi to the masses.

After Mr Foo’s presentation, Mr Loh Khai Peng, MD of HP Singapore hosted an exciting panel of some of the leading CIOs in the region. Amidst the ongoing disruptions in technology, Tony Cole, Fireye, Ramesh Narayanaswamy, SingPost, Mock Pak Lum, Starhub, and Eric Tachibana, UBS, discussed the strategies they employed to communicate with their Board members.



Next Mr Ong Peng Tsin Chairman of Infocomms Investments and one of the most successful and low-profile technopreneurs, spoke about the evolving role of CIOs from “Information” Officers to “Innovation” Officers. As a result, the role of CIOs has changed from back-end operations to a driver of the business. Mr Ong also briefly touched on the lack of interest in computer science studies in Singapore. However, he remained optimistic about the future with the recent influx of VC funded start-ups in the region.

The last speaker of the day was the enigmatic Founder and Director of Family Wealth Solutions Mr Eli Lenyoun discussing the growing importance of Corporate Social Responsibility. “CSR” used to be about philanthropy and compliance, but has become closer to the business as a whole. Since young people today are more interested in “making the world a better place”, organisations are having to step up and take responsibility. 



The final event of the day was the sponsor’s panel hosted by Dr Leong Mun Kew, ISS, NUS and featuring Arthur Tang, HP Enterprise Group, Sharat Sinha, Palo Alto Networks, Wing Fu, Unit4, and Matthey Hardman, VMWare. This panel had an interesting twist with the speakers relating their personal opinions about their organisations CIO – “a peer review”.

View more photos and video of the event here.

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