The CIO paradox is a set of contradictions that lies at the heart of IT leadership. Be strategic and operational. Stay secure and boost innovation. Adopt emerging technologies, while weighed down by the past. Many CIOs have buckled under the CIO paradox, while others have managed to be effective despite it. In working with these successful CIOs over the years, I have found that they all share a common set of practices, philosophies and approaches. We are in the midst of a computing renaissance, when all CIOs will need to raise their game and master this same set of practices.