What you need to do to get your biz and tech teams on the same page.

By AppNexus

women2-sponsored-blog-postTechnology is driving incredible growth across sectors and across the world. A recent BCG report from January of this year reported that mobile technology alone was driving recovery from the global recession, “generating almost $3.3 trillion in revenue globally in 2014 and 11 million jobs.”

And while growth is exciting, it often comes with challenges for technology organizations — and their leaders.

As part of the AppNexus Razzle Dazzle speaker series, Chief Data Scientist Catherine Williams spoke with New York’s top technology leaders, who together represent some of the core pillars of the city’s ecosystem, about the challenges of building and leading a successful technology organization. One of these challenges was the issue of developing alignment and clear lines of communication between the technology and business sides of your organization.

Here are two things you can focus on to help your organization speak the same language:

1. Create a Bilingual Culture Within Your Organization (All the Way Down)

Developing a culture where all parts of the business speak both ‘business’ and ‘technology’ is critical for ensuring the technology you’re delivering is what your clients truly need.

One solution Lucille Mayer, Managing Director and CIO of the Bank of New York Mellon, uses to break down the language barrier is to encourage her teams to use engineering diagrams that both technical and non-technical employees can work on, fostering both communication and cross-functional collaboration. In this way, “the diagrams become the lifeblood of the conversation.”

2. Provide Context

While many CTO’s begin their careers as technologists, the role of CTO at a growing company should be less about writing code and more about thinking of your technology in the context of the business, and communicating that to everyone within the organization. “If the CTO is in the corner writing code then other people are making decisions for the business.”

Communicating this context is crucial for helping engineering teams relate to the vision of the company when they’re implementing product ideas on a daily basis.

Watch the full talk to learn more about the challenges and solutions in building and leading a tech organization.

About the Event: True Stories from The Trenches featured some of New York’s top technology leaders sharing their experiences, struggles, and strategies for success.


  • Minerva Tantoco, CTO, New York City
  • Lucille Mayer, Managing Director and CIO, Bank of New York Mellon
  • Camille Fournier, CTO, Rent the Runway
  • Catherine Williams, Chief Data Scientist, AppNexus (moderator)

We’re also excited to host the next Women 2.0 City Meetup in New York this Thursday, April 2, featuring Lisa LaCour, Global Vice President, Marketing, Outbrain. Learn more and RSVP >