By David Strom


Originally appeared in Financial Technology 8/2000, Financial Technology


Want to know how clueful your CIO, CTO or IT boss really is? Given him or her this IQ (Internet Quotient) test and see where s/he stands!


1. Can your CIO beam his/her electronic business card on his Palm Pilot to someone else?

A. Yes

B. Says yes but when you ask further, s/he can't remember how to do it

C. No

D. Doesn't carry a Pilot


2. In looking up companies on the web that make a particular kind of widget, does your CIO first go to:

A. Yahoo

B. Has his/her assistant search the web

C. Google or some other search site

D. Calls you for advice because doesn't have a desktop computer


3. How many numbers does your CIO have on his/her cell phone's speed dial or address book?

A. Fewer than ten

B. Just the spouse and one assistant

C. More than ten

D. Doesn't use that feature or doesn't have a cell phone


4. How many stocks does your CIO keep track of in his/her online portfolio?

A. At least five

B. Fewer than five

C. Doesn't know, has an assistant do this

D. Doesn't use online portfolios or doesn't have ready online access


5. When your CIO wants to send email to senior staff, does s/he

A. Use a common mailing list or email alias with the names already assembled

B. Types in the individuals' names separately

C. Has an assistant do it, doesn't have a desktop computer

D. Senior staff isn't on corporate email system


6. How many type fonts are on a typical page of a PowerPoint (or equivalent software) slide presentation given by your CIO?

A. Less than 3

C. Three or more

D. Doesn't use Powerpoint, prepares slides by hand


7. What is the speed of the Internet access at your CIO's home?

A. Cable modem or DSL

B. ISDN or dial up modem to corporate network

C. I think s/he just has an AOL account

D. Doesn't have any computers at home or doesn't have any Internet access


8. Has your CIO ever sent a fax from his/her computer?

A. Yes

B. From time to time

C. Can't get his/her fax software working properly

D. Never or doesn't have a desktop computer


9. When you send your CIO email at 8 pm local time on a weekday, when can you expect a response?

A. Within minutes

B. Before 9 am the next work day

C. During the next work day

D. Doesn't use email directly, has an assistant print it out


10. Your CIO receives an email in Portuguese concerning a potential business deal. What does s/he do?

A. Goes to Altavista to obtain a quick translation

B. Prints it out and gives it to an assistant to track down a translator

C. Deletes it unread, thinks it spam

D. Doesn't use email directly or no desktop computer


11. Your CIO is taking a business trip to a distant city. Does s/he?

A. Print out directions personally from Mapquest or equivalent web mapping site

B. Ask an assistant to do this but still knows about these sites

C. Heard about Mapquest in conversation with his or her teenage children

D. Calls his/her assistant when lost en route


12. Your CIO exchanges emails with customers, potential partners and others outside of your corporation how often:

A. On a daily basis

C. Once or twice a week, tops

D. Corporate email system isn't available to outsiders, or doesn't use email or no desktop access




Add ten points for each A answer, five points for each B answer, one point for each C answer, no points for any D. answers.


Extra credit. Add five points to your score for each of the following service categories that your CIO has made use of during the past six months (for a maximum of 40 points):

--,, or other web-based email reader

--,,, or other web-based storage respository

-- Ipass and other global roaming providers

-- IPrint,, and other web-based printing services companies

-- Jfax, eFax, and other Internet-based fax services

-- Downloaded at least five songs from Napster

-- Purchased something from a web storefront other than


Now total the score.

Over 130: Your CIO is so connected, it is awesome! Does your CIO have a life?

100 - 129: your CIO is online and wired! Congratulations.

80-99: There is hope for you yet.

65-79: Suggest that it may be time for you and your CIO to do some techno-bonding off-site

Under 64: Start putting together your resume for and find a more enlightened place to work.