Even with all of the IT challenges, most mid-tier organizations are great places to work. The best ones are very nimble and have far less bureaucracy than large organizations. During a single afternoon meeting, two or three people can make a decision that would take a large, bureaucratic organization six months. Since there are fewer levels between customers and decision makers, mid-tier organizations can change direction quickly when presented with new information. People who wish to avoid travel may prefer mid-tier organizations, which usually have a smaller geographic footprint and require far less long-term or global travel assignments.
Mid-tier CIOs face unique challenges and enjoy unique benefits. They must be willing to determine the root cause of a server failure one minute then discuss business strategy the next. They're the ultimate jack-of-all-trades: project manager, business strategist, technology specialist, vendor manager, IT architect -- and fire hydrant. But for individuals with broad expertise and a desire to do something different every day, this may be the ultimate dream job.
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