Today's information technology (IT) professional must go beyond their technical ability and obtain new leadership skills. Simultaneously obtaining business acumen, developing successful IT-business relationships, communicating effectively, and still being technical makes being an IT professional more challenging than ever. It is the viewpoint of this researcher that self-awareness is the foundational level skill set needed to foster the insights needed to adopt and apply these skills to increase success in the IT professional. Previous research has examined the relationship of self-awareness and it's impact on leadership effectiveness and even explores correlations with emotional intelligence and IT organizations success. However, gaps remain in the literature to the specific correlations of the value and perception of self-awareness within the IT professional, and what specific role self-awareness plays in IT professionals' success. The purpose of this research was to understand and quantify how IT professionals perceive the meaning of the word self-awareness, and the connection between self-awareness and increased effectiveness. A comprehensive survey was conducted with 164 IT and business professionals of different levels, different size organizations and different industries to formalize quantitative answers to these questions. Follow-up interviews were also conducted to gain further clarification of survey results. The results reveal that self-awareness was viewed positively and critical to the success of the IT professional regardless of gender, role, educational level or years in the industry. The data also showed that if more investment in self-awareness training where to incur, the importance of that skill would increase, and the importance of technical skills would decrease; provided they had an external influence ("sponsor") that provided feedback to invest in such skills. They had to have their awareness raised, to raise their awareness, and this effort had to be intentional. Self-awareness had direct positive correlations to improved relationship management. Study limitations and implications to the organization development field are also discussed.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (MA) -- Organization Development; Self-consciousness (Awareness); Self-perception; Emotional intelligence; Information technology -- Employees -- Training of

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graziadio Business School



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Mangiofico, Gary;