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The New CIO

Executives specializing in innovation.

This story appears in the November 2006 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

The acronym may look familiar, but it's a new position being added to company rosters: chief officer, or CIO. In fact, executive search and leadership firm Heidrick & Struggles International Inc. has witnessed a surge in CIO positions during the past three years.

Today's two-way --where consumers can talk about your brand to anyone who will listen, via blogs, podcasts and more--has spurred the rise in CIOs, says Robb Hecht, chief innovations consultant for IMC Strategies Lab, a brand strategy consulting firm in . " used to include one-way media," says Hecht, referring to TV, radio, billboards and the like. "The CIO arose when met marketing. A CIO [encourages] consumers to accept marketing messages and become part of the marketing process."

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