15 Inspiring Resolutions for Digital Trailblazers, CIOs, and CDOs on Digital Transformation

New year’s resolutions help you reflect on the past and think about some objectives and changes you want for the upcoming year. I think they are useful tools for self-reflection, even if many of us forget about them once the pressures of the new year take over our days and cloud our longer-term thinking.

Resolutions for Digital Trailblazers, CIOs, and CDOs on Digital Transformation

This year is a little hard to figure out with the wake of the pandemic behind us, the threat of a recession looming, and the need to drive transformative change growing exponentially over time. Just look at Southwest Airlines’ failure during the holiday week for an example of an enterprise that didn’t transform fast enough, and maybe others like Meta’s overdrive to the metaverse and arguably risking today’s business. CIOs and CDOs (both chief digital officers and chief data officers) are facing a challenging year. 

It won't be easy to forecast and read the tea leaves this year. Digital Trailblazers will need to drive their organizations while also considering how to recession-proof their digital transformation strategies.

Do you need to author your own resolutions, or can you learn from others? I believe in the latter, so this year, I reached out to influencers in my network to share a resolution. You’ll find my resolution at the end.

  1. Protect revenue with AIOps: “Savvy CIOs will use technology to deliver extraordinary customer experiences in 2023 and help their organizations protect revenue. AI that can prevent and resolve outages at scale will be a key part of those CIOs’ arsenals.” – Mohan Kompella, VP of product marketing at BigPanda
  2. Improve service and team health: “Stop worrying about vanity metrics like how many nines your service is available. Resolve to set well-defined, realistic reliability and performance targets at the individual service level and use automation to ensure service health and avoid team overload.” – Kit Merker, chief growth officer, Nobl9
  3. Accelerate customer-driven innovation: “My entire career has been in customer-facing roles, even when I was CIO at Salesforce. I’m coming into this year as the new CEO of Propel Software, and my goal is to accelerate our pace of innovation so our employees, customers, and stakeholders can be more successful tomorrow than they are today. Our next chapter is about taking a maniacal customer focus and scaling it so we can serve thousands more effectively and efficiently.” – Ross Meyercord, CEO of Propel Software
  4. Accelerate hybrid working: “Make this the year you embrace the global technology revolution: remote work, automation, and diverse teams. Go beyond the limits of your city, your existing installed capacity, and the local talent. Don’t let limitations of the past be the stopper of your best ideas!” – Arturo Garcia, CEO, DNAMIC
  5. Embrace low-code solutions: “In 2023, IT leaders will have to figure out ways to do more with less, which will require new solutions. To tackle this challenge, IT leaders should resolve to embrace high-performance low-code tools. This will help meet critical business needs amidst the increasingly fast-paced innovation and complexity demands, improve developer productivity while reducing developer frustration, and deliver technology solutions customers expect.” – Patrick Jean, CTO, OutSystems
  6. Integrate customer with employee experiences: “Many companies have spent the past few years fine-tuning their internal processes. This year, I anticipate that organizations will spend more effort and budget connecting internal backend business processes with external customer-facing processes to reduce the chaos of managing interactions across multiple channels for customers and businesses.” – Stanley Huang, co-founder and CTO at Moxo
  7. Overcome customer experience bottlenecks: To deliver top-notch customer experience and reinvent offerings, overcome three hurdles: (1) lack of contextual engagement, (2) pervasive information silos, and (3) inordinately high IT dependency. These bottlenecks inadvertently lead to higher turnaround time for customer service, mishandling customer complaints, error-prone processing, growing operational costs, and dwindling customer loyalty. Anurag Shah, VP and head of products and solutions at Newgen
  8. Shift-left and double-down continuous testing: “As developers, engineers, and QA professionals increasingly prioritize mobile experiences, IT teams need to be laser-focused on developing quality mobile apps and features while also resolving app quality issues across the SDLC. Shifting test left and right throughout the development lifecycle by employing a devops test toolchain will facilitate a better developer experience while also reducing risk and increasing ROI.” – Marcus Merrell, VP of technology strategy at Sauce Labs
  9. Tame infrastructure chaos: “Due to the increasing complexity of infrastructure, my team’s resolution for 2023 is to help businesses tame the chaos of infrastructure. IT and DevOps teams can deploy and manage environments more easily, businesses have better visibility and understanding of costs, and developers can increase productivity.” – Edan Evantal, CTO of Quali
  10. Expand Reliability Mindsets to Business Teams: “With this new socio-technical definition of reliability, we predict teams entirely outside of engineering will prioritize it in their process and culture. Consider a customer-facing team, like sales. When landing new clients, the team must ensure continuity even if people are out of the office. They need consistency in their messaging and engagement to prevent any deals from falling through the cracks. They must manage unplanned work interfering with planned work, just like engineers dealing with incidents. The reliability mindset, along with processes and tooling, is the best way for these teams to uplevel these skills.” – Jim Gochee, CEO of Blameless  
  11. Accelerate to data lakes: “Enterprise adoption rates of lakehouse technologies are skyrocketing. We’re seeing lots of movement in companies embracing open source, file and table formats. Will data warehouses go away in a year? We can’t say yes for sure, but trends are pointing in that direction.” – Tomer Shiran, co-founder and CPO, Dremio
  12. Prioritize Your Day: “Do not succumb to the siren songs of ‘easy wins’ or ‘urgent matters.’ Instead, I will focus on what’s important. I will organize my schedule so I can do something important every day.” – Marko Anastasov, co-founder of Semaphore CI/CD.
  13. Focus on a healthy lifestyle: “My 2023 resolution is a health conscience one and will align with the seasons. My resolution is no carbs or sugar (including alcoholic beverages) after sunset - so after around 8 pm during the summer and 5 pm in the winter. If I decide to partake, I must do ten pushups before each drink post-sunset.” – Kashyap Deorah, CEO of HyperTrack 
  14. Attack #data #integration complexity: #DataSprawl - Tyler James Johnson, co-founder and CTO at PrivOps.
  15. Commit to lifelong learning: “Every day, write a little, read more, and invest even more efforts to reach out to people and learn from them. Ask questions, refine your perspective on how you should spend your day, and tune your longer-term vision.” – Isaac Sacolick, President of StarCIO and author of Digital Trailblazer, Driving Digital, and this blog, Social, Agile, and Transformation.

Also, see my latest post on enlightening books to read in 2023 and join the community of Digital Trailblazers.

Books on Digital Transformatio

Join the Digital Trailblazer Community

Digital Trailblazer Community

At the end of every chapter in Digital Trailblazer, find the URL to get access to my community and supplementary content for aspiring transformation leaders.

The Digital Trailblazer Community is free for a limited time, so I hope you’ll read the book and join us!

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About Isaac Sacolick

Isaac Sacolick is President of StarCIO, a technology leadership company that guides organizations on building digital transformation core competencies. He is the author of Digital Trailblazer and the Amazon bestseller Driving Digital and speaks about agile planning, devops, data science, product management, and other digital transformation best practices. Sacolick is a recognized top social CIO, a digital transformation influencer, and has over 900 articles published at InfoWorld, CIO.com, his blog Social, Agile, and Transformation, and other sites. You can find him sharing new insights @NYIke on Twitter, his Driving Digital Standup YouTube channel, or during the Coffee with Digital Trailblazers.