SearchCIO Covers MITCIO Symposium: Why C-level Relationships Matter

C-level relationships and engagement are key to CIO success highlights Sue Troy in her 2015 article on SearchCIO.  

Peter Nichol, head of IT for Access Health CT, suggested that IT needs to “be the business.” That is, the IT department needs to conceive of itself as a vital part of the whole organization, rather than as a separate unit operating under a different mandate. “If we look at ourselves as IT and the business being over there, by default, we’re not the business, we’re simply a cost center. So, we should be eliminated. We should start to crank those costs down to eventually be zero or as close as we can get,” he said. The CIO can combat that idea by regarding IT as a more integral part of the business – and, by extension, by more closely aligning with non-IT peers, Nichol suggested.


Nichol also touched upon the “strength in numbers” theme. “If [the CIO pitches the] value [of a project or strategy by his or herself], it’s going to be a really long-winded sales pitch that won’t result in a lot. If you go in as a team with some of the other partners on the leadership team, you’re in it to win it. … You have a lot better chance of adoption and a successful business outcome.”


Click here to read the full article.




IBM Executive Exchange (online image). (2015). Retrieved June 19, 2015, from


Troy, S. (2015). C-level relationships, engagement key to CIO success. Retrieved June 18, 2015, from



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Peter is a technology executive with 19 years of experience, dedicated to driving innovation, digital transformation, leadership, and data in business. He helps organizations connect strategy to execution to maximize company performance. He has been recognized for Digital Innovation by CIO 100, MIT Sloan, Computerworld, and the Project Management Institute. As Managing Director at OROCA Innovations, Peter leads the CXO advisory services practice, driving digital strategies. Peter was honored as an MIT Sloan CIO Leadership Award Finalist in 2015 and is a regular contributor to on innovation. Peter has led businesses through complex changes, including the adoption of data-first approaches for portfolio management, lean six sigma for operational excellence, departmental transformations, process improvements, maximizing team performance, designing new IT operating models, digitizing platforms, leading large-scale mission-critical technology deployments, product management, agile methodologies, and building high-performance teams. As Chief Information Officer, Peter was responsible for Connecticut’s Health Insurance Exchange’s (HIX) industry-leading digital platform transforming consumerism and retail oriented services for the health insurance industry. Peter championed the Connecticut marketplace digital implementation with a transformational cloud-based SaaS platform and mobile application recognized as a 2014 PMI Project of the Year Award finalist, CIO 100, and awards for best digital services, API, and platform. He also received a lifetime achievement award for leadership and digital transformation, honored as a 2016 Computerworld Premier 100 IT Leader. Peter is the author of Learning Intelligence: Expand Thinking. Absorb Alternative. Unlock Possibilities (2017), which Marshall Goldsmith, author of the New York Times No. 1 bestseller Triggers, calls "a must-read for any leader wanting to compete in the innovation-powered landscape of today." Peter also authored The Power of Blockchain for Healthcare: How Blockchain Will Ignite The Future of Healthcare (2017), the first book to explore the vast opportunities for blockchain to transform the patient experience. Peter has a B.S. in C.I.S from Bentley University and an MBA from Quinnipiac University, where he graduated Summa Cum Laude. He earned his PMP® in 2001 and is a certified Six Sigma Master Black Belt, Masters in Business Relationship Management (MBRM) and Certified Scrum Master. As a Commercial Rated Aviation Pilot and Master Scuba Diver, Peter understands first hand, how to anticipate change and lead boldly.