I’m sitting here in sunny London (yes it really does shine here!) looking at the CIO Action Plan for 2011 that we produced as a result of last year’s Annual conference. The topic was Business as Unusual and we collated all of the great ideas from the conference into a series of questions that CIOs should ask themselves as they plan for the following (this) year. The questions were based on assumptions of what would happen this year. By and large, the issues were as we expected. The plan covered 5 major areas but the first was Leadership. As I have met with many CIOs this year, this is still uppermost in many of their minds. The expansion of the CIO role beyond the traditional IT role, the CIO as a Leader and up skilling the IT leadership team to support the CIO have proved to be ongoing activities this year. I have had the delight in seeing several CIOs expand their role into the COO or similar role. But that requires a strong and flexible IT leadership team doing more than support – stepping into the space left by the CIO as he or she takes on the wider responsibility. So, the challenge – is your leadership team ready?