A sportscaster once asked former NHL superstar Wayne Gretzky how it was that he always seemed to be right where the action was in Hockey games [nicknamed The Great One, Gretzky has been called the greatest hockey player ever by many sportswriters, players, and the league itself]. His answer was “I just figure out where the puck’s going to be next, and skate there”. I’ve often reflected on that dialog, because in that simple exchange, Gretzky revealed what it takes to be a successful CIO. I’d have to leave the decision as to whether or not I was a successful CIO to people with whom I interacted during my years in that capacity: employees, executive team counterparts in other areas of corporate responsibility, vendor principals, associates in national and state organizations on whose Boards I served [and in some cases chaired], etc. I guess I can at least assume I wasn’t a total failure, because I made a very good living in that role for several decades.
As a member of an organization’s senior executive team, a successful CIO has to visualize where the organization is headed from a business perspective, what IT environment would best support the organization’s success in that future business climate, and gain support [and funding] in the current business climate for projects that would move in the direction of that IT environment. Sounds simple, but it’s much easier said than done — particularly in situations where not only containing but actually reducing costs is a key need in the current business climate.
So how does all that relate to my posts to this Blog?
As I look at how things have unfolded since I started this web site and blog almost a year ago [about two months before the 2016 presidential election], it’s not difficult for me to assess where we are now vis-a-vis where we would be had Hillary Clinton been elected President — better off by orders of magnitude: for many reasons in my opinion, but even if there were no other reasons, because a) we have a Supreme Court that has about the same liberal/conservative balance it had prior to the death in 2016 of Justice Scalia [with Clinton in the White House, it would be much more liberal-leaning now because she would have filled a conservative vacancy with a liberal, rather than the conservative/conservative replacement I believe Justice Gorsuch’s appointment will turn out to be], and b) we have a practical and pragmatic thinker in the White House instead of a standard, business-as-usual, don’t-rock-the-boat politician.
However, the inability of Republicans to clearly articulate and move forward with an agenda, coupled with the Democrats’ unrelenting battle against President Trump [“the Russians are coming”, or whatever] and the largely liberal media’s wholehearted support of that battle, has produced a new level of gridlock in Washington. This week’s apparent [at this writing, at least] final collapse of the Repeal/Replace the ACA component of the Trump administration agenda is absolute confirmation of my assertion since the get-go on this site and in my blog posts that the Current Paradigm is dead. The only remaining variable in the Paradigm Shift Underway is what the attributes of the New Paradigm will be. By the way, I suppose it’s obvious by now, but perhaps I should point out that my choice of images to include in this post stemmed from my strong feeling that I am correct in this assessment of our current political system.
In future posts, I will, from that overall perspective, offer my views on 1) what New Paradigm attributes I see developing and what additional attributes I think are most likely to develop, and 2) how development of these attributes relates to the here and now [e.g., what is likely to happen on the Trump administration agenda front, how all this might play out in the 2018, 2020, 2022 and 2024 elections, etc.].
So Here’s The Deal …
So here’s the deal. … I’ve decided to rise above all the details with which the media is currently consumed and do what nobody in the media seems to be doing — look at all this “noise” [where the action is and what is going on now], figure out possible scenarios that may develop from here [figure out where the puck’s going to be next], describe potential environments current and anticipated directions may create [skate there], and outline what our lives would be like in those environments [be ready to play the game “where the action will be”]. Only what I’m sure will be masses of historians who will one day look back on my writings and critique them will be able to document whether I was Gretzky-class in my assessments and predictions. 😊
Charles M. Jones