AWS Cloud Enterprise Strategy Blog

Announcing my New Book, War & Peace & IT – a Resource for Enterprise Leaders in the Digital Age

I’m very excited to announce that today is the official publication date of my latest book, War & Peace & IT: Business Leadership, Technology, and Success in the Digital Age. It is intended as the hitherto missing book for senior enterprise executives on how best to work with their technology organizations to accomplish their digital transformations. Or, to put it differently, it is the book that CIO readers of my last book, A Seat at the Table, told me they wished I would write for their CEOs, CFOs, CMOs, and line of business leaders.

War & Peace & IT reviews the way that enterprises have traditionally worked with their IT departments, and why that way of working will not take them successfully into the digital future. Informed by the many conversations we Enterprise Strategists have had with AWS customers as well as my personal experience as a CIO and CEO, it covers such difficult topics as how to foster innovation, budget for IT (or digital product) costs, manage risk, understand the business implications of the cloud and machine learning, and make good investment decisions in today’s digital environment of uncertainty and rapid change.

The seriousness of the topic didn’t stop me from including a bit of playfulness, though. Woven together with the story line, that  of driving digital transformation through changing the relationship between the business and IT, are pointed and illuminating references to Napoleon and his campaign in Russia, bobblehead dolls, and Hindu gods. I hope that you will enjoy them. But the book is based on our Amazonian principle of customer obsession: I have tried to explore the most difficult questions that our customers ask us as they stumble upon impediments in their digital journeys.

If you are interested in my earlier books, A Seat at the Table: IT Leadership in the Age of Agility is an exploration of how the role of IT leadership is changing as we move into the digital age of agility, leanness, DevOps, and the cloud. The Art of Business Value, my first book, showed how misunderstandings of the term “business value” have led to poor decisions in overseeing IT initiatives, and proposed better ways of interpreting business value. As for my next book, I’m not entirely sure yet, but I would like to pick up on a topic I’ve discussed before: how to bust through bureaucracy and make it work for you instead of against you in your digital transformation. What do you think?

I’d also like to mention Stephen Orban’s fine book, Ahead in the Cloud: Best Practices for Navigating the Future of Enterprise IT, also a product of the Enterprise Strategy Team at AWS, our other blog posts, and Executive Insights, an AWS offering that we participate in.











Mark Schwartz

Mark Schwartz

Mark Schwartz is an Enterprise Strategist at Amazon Web Services and the author of The Art of Business Value and A Seat at the Table: IT Leadership in the Age of Agility. Before joining AWS he was the CIO of US Citizenship and Immigration Service (part of the Department of Homeland Security), CIO of Intrax, and CEO of Auctiva. He has an MBA from Wharton, a BS in Computer Science from Yale, and an MA in Philosophy from Yale.