Technical Leadership Capabilities

When: 21st Mar 2018, 18:00 - 21st Mar 2018, 21:00
Where: BCS, 1st Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London, WC2E 7HA
Town/City: London
Organiser: BCS ELITE
Price: Free to attend for both BCS members and non-membersFree
Further Information: Further Information


Many engineers and technical specialists think that managers are a waste of space and add no value.

Google was no exception; after experimenting with cutting out management altogether, they used data analytics to identify what traits mark out the best managers, with eight factors noted as priorities:

  1. Be a good coach
  2. Empower your team & don’t micromanage
  3. Express interest in team members’ success & personal well-being
  4. Don’t be a sissy: Be productive & results-oriented
  5. Be a good communicator & listen to your team
  6. Help your employees with career development
  7. Have a clear vision & strategy for the team
  8. Have key technical skills so you can help advise the team

Technical ability is the least important factor here; the difference comes from caring about your team, learning to coach them and building trust and commitment.

Brian and Robina have spent the last 30 years consulting with technical managers around the world, finding the eight most appreciated leadership qualities to be:

  • Sense of humour
  • Unpretentious
  • Knowledgeable
  • Empathetic & supportive
  • Good listener
  • Honest & trustworthy
  • Prepared to admit mistakes
  • Consistent

They will discuss their new Technical Leadership Capabilities series, and explain why the route to promotion and senior positions gets easier by spending more time developing people management skills rather than developing and practicing technical skills.

The discussion will close with a panel session and an opportunity for one-to-one discussion.

About the Speakers

Professor Brian Sutton has over 40 years’ management and leadership experience. He has developed comprehensive information systems (IS) strategies, conducted large-scale re- engineering initiatives and led major organisational change. He regularly contributes articles to professional journals and speaks at major professional gatherings. He holds a Doctorate in Corporate Education, a Master’s degree in Information Systems Management from the London School of Economics and has worked extensively in both the private and public sectors in Europe and the United States. He was formerly a Professor of Systems Management in the Information Resources Management College of the National Defence University in Washington, DC. He is currently Professor of Learning Performance in the Business School at Middlesex University.

Dr Robina Chatham has over 35 years’ experience in IT. She has held positions that range from IT project manager within the shipbuilding industry to European Chief Information Officer for a leading merchant bank and lecturer at Cranfield School of Management. She is qualified as both a Mechanical Engineer and a Neuroscientist. Previous books include Corporate Politics for IT Managers: How to get Streetwise; Changing the IT Leader’s Mindset: Time for revolution rather than evolution, and The Art of IT Management: Practical tools and techniques. Robina now runs her own company specialising in management development and executive coaching. She is also a visiting fellow at Cranfield School of Management and a research associate for the Leading Edge Forum. Her prime focus is on helping senior IT managers to increase their personal impact and influence at board level.