Truthfully, I have always enjoyed the perks of being a CIO. Having the second most capital to spend (behind construction) gets you lots of attention.
One way that vendors show their attention is to take you some place to talk business. As a CIO you have lots of opportunities to eat good meals and then get a case of short arms when the check arrives. Ethically I don’t have a problem with this, if it isn’t abused. I am probably treated to 10 or so vendor dinners a year. Sometimes it is a burger at the pub, but often it is a steak at Lombardi’s.
Some of the offers I receive are unbelievable. I don’t understand how any CIO can ethically accept some of the junkets that we are offered. Recently, I received an invitation that tops them all. Avaya (the telephony vendor) sent me a letter from the Chairman and CEO offering to fly me and a guest to Germany to watch the World Cup. This was the real deal. As the letter states (see attached) this is going to be a first class junket. Just, not for me. The mailing alone was impressive. The letterhead was the best paper I have ever seen (living in the Paper Valley I notice things like that).
As I get more offers I am going to post them here to show folks the lengths a vendor will go to get cozy with a CIO. If word gets out I suppose I will receive a lot fewer offers.