Stay in any job position for a while and you're bound to make mistakes, some larger than others. Many of the mistakes that stick out in the memories of CIOs, CMIOs and other senior leaders come relatively early during their tenures, which has given them time to reflect on this missteps and convert those mistakes into teaching moments for those just embarking on their executive careers.

"One thing young CIOs need to know is that these jobs are not about your technological capabilities," says Harry Lukens, CIO at Lehigh Valley Health Network in Allentown, Pa. "These jobs are an art, not a science. How you manage people up and down will determine whether you're successful or not."

Lessons that CIOs have learned include knowing the difference between what users want and what they need, managing expectations, and valuing not just executive support for a project but executive ownership of the project. A feature story in the April issue of Health Data Management gives four stories from I.T. leaders of projects gone sour, along with tips on particularly smart decisions they made along the way.

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