From CIO TO CEO — Lessons from a real journey

DQI Bureau
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Ashish Chauhan is a mechanical engineer from IIT Bombay and an MBA from IIM Calcutta. He has worked with organizations like IDBI Bank, NSE, Reliance Industries. Chauhan is the MD and CEO of Bombay Stock Exchange and also serves as MD and CEO of ICCL.


 Reaching to the top of the corporate ladder is not an easy task, not even for a CIO. But there are a handful of influential people who are able make it. At the DQ Live session in Mumbai, we got the privilege to meet one such CIO who has made it to the CEO's position.

In the session, Ashish Chauhan, CEO of Bombay Stock Exchange, shared his real experiences and the struggles that he went through in the transition.

Ashish said, "I was not born to be a CIO but my journey is the story of the ability to adapt to situation. I did what the others did not want to do and in turn learned a lot".


Here are some strategies that Ashish believes will work for aspiring CIOs:

1. Do Not Restrict Yourself

A CIO needs to be humble with IT, not restricting his/her boundary of functioning. Treating IT as a strategy tool will prove to be more useful methodology.

2. Ability to Adapt

A CIO needs to be flexible enough to adapt to changing scenarios and responsibilities. This will help him deal with the different challenges in an innovative manner, and prove useful for his business.


3. Dealing with circumstances

There will be various kinds of pressurizing scenarios that a CIO will need to deal with. Adjusting and dealing with circumstances that surface during your career will ensure that CIOs reach greater heights.


The ability to handle functions that are beyond the marked boundaries will be an added advantage for any CIO.

Ashish supported it with a real life example

When the IPO of one reliance group of companies was to hit the market, I was handed over the reins. There could be sudden responsibilities like this

and also challenging like the one of selling IPL tickets for Mumbai Indians( as Reliance Industries is associated with the team). To my shock I managed to pack the stadium, just 4 days before the match there were very few tickets sold. Today, Mumbai Indians sells almost all tickets. This highlight that you need to revise strategies at regular intervals.