CIO Boot Camp to show way to executive suite for experts in IT

Folks who are really good at communicating with computers aren't always so good at communicating with people, observes Fred Kesinger.

And the communication gap, he says, often is a major headache for technically savvy executives who want to make the next step into positions such as chief information officer.

Kesinger, who works as a senior consultant with Sparks-based Averill Consulting Group, looks to begin bridging the communication gap with a one-day CIO Boot Camp next month.

If the initial workshop is successful, Kesinger and Tim Averill, the chief executive and chief technology officer of Averill Consulting Group, say they plan to expand the workshop into other mid-sized cities and develop further education for technically savvy people who want to move into the executive suite.

"We believe there is a substantial need for this, not only here but elsewhere," says Kesinger.

They have modest goals for the inaugural session on Sept. 19 maybe 10 participants, a number that reflects the space that's available in the Averill Consulting Group conference room.

In the day-long session, Kesinger will cover subjects such as the role of corporate chief information officers, the skills they need, and the path that executives follow from positions such as director of information technology into CIO roles.

Along the way, they'll be videotaped as they learn to pitch products to senior executives.

Kesinger, who has worked the better part of four decades in information technology, made the transition to the executive suite himself.

After working as information technology director for Freeport McMoran, a mining and energy company, he became vice president of business support services for UtiliCorp United, a Kansas City gas and electric utility, and chief information officer and vice president for information technology at DCP Midstream, a Denver-based energy company.

Averill says his company hopes that the workshop initially will serve to strengthen its relationships with its customers, who are predominately mid-sized companies that use the firm for jobs ranging from big implementation projects with enterprise resource-planning software to day-in, day-out support of IT needs.

The one-day workshop is priced at $500 for customers of Averill Consulting Group and $1,000 for non-customers.


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