Argues that leaders with extensive backgrounds in organizational politics are more likely than technology‐focused leaders to complete their information technology projects successfully. Describes how successful technological leaders in the public sector manage their projects, mainly upwards and outwards, and tailor their technical visions to the day‐to‐day reality of their organizations. Compares the evolution and fate of two information technology projects, one managed by a technology‐oriented scientist (success) and the other by a politics‐driven bureaucrat (failure). Proposes that senior decision makers can hone the political skills of their technological leaders by training them on the “soft” skills of management and helping them balance the skill sets of their teams. Suggests how to change current incentive systems in order to encourage technological leaders to politick their projects to success.
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