Next Up... Blogging CIOs
Blogging has finally reach the top of the IT food chain. I say this because CIO magazine dedicated several pages to the topic of blogging and even included commentary from blogging CIOs who make no attempt to hide their identities. This is great news assuming CIOs, like other newcomers to blogging , don't spend their time talking about their cats.
The article goes on to discuss some important things to consider before setting up a blog. These apply equally well to any professional and not just CIOs. First up, remember that a blog is just a communication tool. And because it is YOUR communication tool, it should sound like you. Don't take on a new personality. Your comments and thoughts will have a better change of ringing true if you inject a little of yourself in to your writing.
The next thing to ask yourself is why you want to blog. Is it because you think it's cool? That time has passed. With hundreds of thousands and maybe even millions of blogs out there, the cool factor has pretty much disappeared. Instead, you're hopefully looking to establish yourself or your company as a thought leader. Or maybe you want to demystify your department. Or simply because you like to write. All three of those are valid reasons and there are certainly others.
So if you still want to blog, you'll also want to figure out if you even have the time to blog. One way to do this is to blog "privately". That is, create blog entries that no one can actually read. If you're able to stick to a somewhat frequent posting cycle, then you should be set in the "real world". If not, don't bother starting the blog. It'll be waste of everyone's time and could diminish your credibility. One step better than complete secrecy is to send copies of your blog entries to close friends for them to review. And be sure to actually listen to their feedback.
If you do end up venturing in to the blogging world, consider following the CandidCIO's advice and don't ding your vendors, make disparaging comments about competitors, or talk about your staff. That doesn't mean you have to avoid controversy, just be careful about it. And remember that whatever you post on a public blog will one day make it in to Google which pretty much makes it part of the public record.