Technologies2 min read

Heinz Herren, a CIO Who Says ‘Good’ Isn’t Enough Anymore

VMware Staff

VMware’s Agents of Change initiative celebrates smart CIOs who challenge the status quo. By harnessing the transformative power of technology, they are creating unlimited possibilities for their businesses.

Here’s the next individual in the Agents of Change Series: Heinz Herren, CIO and CTO at Swisscom.

“If you’re good today, you’re out tomorrow.” Those are the ruthless words of Heinz Herren, CIO and CTO of Swisscom, which show just how high his standards are when it comes to providing a service both internally and to Swisscom’s residential, enterprise, and wholesale customers. The company is Switzerland’s leading telecoms and IT company, with a multinational presence, and is known as a companion to its customers in the digital world.

Earlier today, Herren featured in the Day 1 general session at VMworld 2017 Europe with VMware’s COO, Customer Operations, Sanjay Poonen. Herren explained how Swisscom has further strengthened its cloud offering with the launch of Enterprise Service Cloud.

Changing With the Times

This new service, introduced less than a week ago, has come because Herren doesn’t want Swisscom to stand still—or to be just good enough—he wants to look to the future and ensure Swisscom will continue to thrive in the years to come.  

Hear from Herren in the video below, then read on to learn his three tips for inspiring change.


Making Sure the Band Is in Tune

Herren likes to lead change, and he believes that playing trombone as part of a big band has helped him become a Change Agent. In fact, he likens many of the cultural intricacies of being part of a band to being a part of a business.

“You have to be on top of your own job, and play correctly, otherwise you can get kicked out. But that’s not enough—you have to be a part of the band, which means listening to your colleagues when they have a solo part,” he says.

“You have to trust your leader, make sure you follow his strategy, and if you work together as a team the results are just fantastic,” he continues.

It is this team element that could be the key difference between being a ‘good’ company and being one of the best.

Three Tips to Inspire Change

Herren offers a few suggestions to other CIOs who want to inspire change:

  1. Be a scout of the future. Understand the relevant trends for your business.
  2. Engage early. Engage with executive colleagues, and the most important and senior people in your company. Tell them the vision and the strategy, and make them a part of it.
  3. Transform the way you work. And ensure you have enough time and passion to do so. It’s not about technology; it’s about changing the methodologies of working styles.