Selling IT investment to the board is a perennial challenge for technologists, and’s head of R&D Nick Lansley says getting to know the company’s leaders personally helps.

He said a lot of retailers have IT directors on the board now, but it never hurts to ask for one to one meetings to get to know them and build up a relationship.

He said at the Retail Week conference: “You need to get to know the leadership team of your organisation.

“I go and have one-to-one meetings with them, as informal lunches rather than formal meetings. You can get them to understand what you do.”

He said technologists need to have the personality that enables them to get on well with the leadership team, and said acronyms and geek speak should be avoided. 

“IT needs to be sat at the top table, and it should be there in a directorial capacity. But if it’s not, get to know them, make them your peer group. That’s why we’ve achieved what we have at with research and development.”