Tuesday, March 27, 2007


Enterprise Architecture and Paradigm Shifting...

If enterprise architects are agents of change, then how come none of them have caused a paradigm shift to occur...

A radical or abrupt change in the way things are done has been described as a paradigm shift. The shift is usually the result of a pivotal event. It is followed by a period of intensive activity and development. It comes about when new methods or devices are discovered and implemented to enhance or replace those existing, or when no existing method or device exists to accomplish a desired end result. It is sometimes a radical departure from rather than just a modification of the status quo. It includes a change of perspective and state of mind and introduces approaches that may or may not be mutually exclusive of existing approaches.

If the present state does not address problems that invite solutions, can we and should we create environments and attitudes that will make a paradigm shift possible? One way may be to discuss the notion of innovation but only not in the usual four-color chock-a-block eye candy substance lacking repeat-after-me corporate monotone that you can find pretty much anywhere. Why can't innovation be focused on the inner-self? Why can't folks acknowledge people, then process, then tools - in that order?

Paradigm shifts may only occur when the old paradigm produces a critical mass of hard problems that forces a new whole new technique to be created. Maybe we aren't trying hard enough to find problems? What if we moved away from boring vendor-oriented discussions on things like metrics, SOA, BPM, open source, user-centric identity, OpenID and other second class topics and started to calculate the ROI of getting rid of process-oriented weenies in management and started replacing them with strong technical leadership? Processes sometimes blind us from seeing the root cause. Kinda like not seeing the forest for all those freakin trees.

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