2.4 Strategic Leadership

2.4.1 Introduction

Strategic leadership provides the vision and articulation of an institution's mission and ethos. The Vice-Chancellor or equivalent creates this vision and the organisational structure through which it will be achieved. Although this vision may and does vary considerably in content and detail from one institution to another it is the catalyst by which the institutional strategy for both current and future needs will be developed by the management team and approved by the governing body.

'The strategic decision making process must have access to the University Executive Group, doing anything without them and their buy-in to the consequences is just a waste of time. ... The shorter the path between IT and the executive group the better!'

The development of the ICT strategy, that is either held within the institutional strategy or documented separately, will reinforce and help realise these institutional plans. There are a number of issues that affect an institution's ICT strategy development and implementation and which the senior management team have the opportunity to influence within their chosen approach to ICT.

Now consider these key questions:

  • Does your institutional mission require transformational change, strategic development or operational efficiency?
  • What do you believe are the key imperatives and constraints to achieving alignment of ICT and institutional strategy?
  • What is your horizon for institutional planning? How compatible is this with the planning of strategic ICT?
  • How does the senior management team measure the success in ICT alignment against strategy?