“The last few years have been the toughest ever,” says Steve Jessop
founder of sales improvement specialist, Quantum Sales and Marketing Services
. Decision-making processes are ever more centralised and “elongated” in a recession; while in terms of career progression, there are fewer senior sales positions, says Martin Knowles
, Commercial Director. Organisations with an eye on their overheads are merging the sales and marketing function, or meshing UK sales with European sales; or eliminating roles entirely, getting sales to report directly to the MD.
The key requirement to being a successful CIO is to be a business leader “first and foremost” - although one with a specific responsibility for IT, says Professor Joe Peppard, Director of the IT Leadership Programme at Cranfield School of Management