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Virtual Think IT Event: The Long and Winding Road of an IT Executive

Last Friday, we hosted a Virtual Think IT Event on The Long and Winding Road of The IT Executive! We had Jim Graham, CIO at Prime Therapeutics do a fire side chat on the trials and tribulations of his career taking a look under the covers of his successes and learned experiences (code for failures!) He discussed the role of CIO in today’s challenging and turbulent business world. A huge thank you to Jim and everyone that joined us! 

How did you end up with your first job? 

Jim came from and statistics and computer science background. When he was in college, companies came to his college campus and went through many interviews. Jim landed his first job with State Farm. It ended up being in Illinois where he mentioned to the members of this session that it’s important to take risks like that.  

Teachingteaching and coaching has been an influential part of Jim’s career 

  • 2 kinds of teachers: one is who really care about the students and one is who do not 
  • To be a good teacher, you must have a passion for what you’re learning and teaching 
  • Coaching: how different people learn, get to audiences’ level, and understand them 
  • Teaching is the best form of learning 

What surprises have you had since being CIO at Prime? 

Jim talked about how he has had a seat at the table at Prime by being a good business partner and also by having the opportunity to lead larger initiatives. At Prime, they have a lot of fun in which brings a lot of problem-solving. The one surprise that Jim had was a security related issue. It ended up being a false alarm but it showed him how as CIO, you lead everything and you continue to learn as you go. 

What drives you the most? 

  • Continuous learning 
  • Being passionate 
  • Being open to different experiences  
  • Learn from people around you 
  • Take risks 
  • Coaching and teaching 

What are some things you’ve done to get to CIO? 

Over the years, Jim has led some strategic initiatives and has had a passion for understanding the business he is currently in. Another major part of getting to CIO is trusting and getting trust from other leaders you are working with.  

What else do you want to achieve in your career? 

Jim wants to execute all the things that Prime is continuing to grow and work on. He also wants to give back and take more time to coach, mentor, and train. In the future Jim also wants to be on a company board and make a difference in the health care industry.