Hiring a non-tech person for a CTO

Citrix has gone and hired a new CTO

For me I’m seeing another business person at Citrix in charge of the technical direction, not someone that has a strong basis of engineering and technology.

Maybe I’m judging MBA’s harshly, though they are bred and trained to aim for sales and revenue.  Engineering backgrounds aim for better products and solutions.   There is nothing wrong with either and every software business needs both.   For me, it just tells you the focus Citrix has at the top.   It isn’t about the tech, its about the sales first and foremost.

What are your thoughts on a non-scientific or non-engineering based Chief Technical Officer?

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4 Responses to Hiring a non-tech person for a CTO

  1. Paras says:

    CTO, a non-technical person, huh!!!, wonder why his designation would still be called CTO,that’s probably the first one I heard off in my 5 years in IT. Never seen a CTO being a non-techie.

    but just read this last line

    “For the ones that are wondering: Simon Crosby is still at his position as the CTO of the Virtualization & Management division”

    so this pretty much explains that new CTO will be the guys who will speak where as Simon will be asked to focus more on product improvement rather than have him speak at conferences.

  2. Jase McCarty says:

    I always think of this commercial when I hear someone say “I have an MBA”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NcoDV0dhWPA

    You have to wonder how a non-technical CTO is going to do, and how that portion of the company is going to grow in a technical sense. To me, a CTO needs to have the tech background, coupled with business sense.


  3. Jase McCarty says:

    Let me add to my post, by saying that from the tweets I have seen by Harry Labana, he does seem to be technically oriented.

    Good luck to Harry @ Citrix!


  4. Ami says:

    I am a developer. My current company CTO is non technical … hahaha

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