Saturday, October 06, 2007


Enterprise Architecture: Are you afraid to make a decision?

One should never fear making a decision, especially if it is based on an unwavering principle, no matter what the consequence, no matter what the reward...

Some folks are too afraid to make any kind of decision; incapable of taking any risk. Nowadays, it is manifested itself in perception management instead of strong technical leadership where folks are sometimes too afraid to change processes, strategies or simply say no when you run across a bad idea. This simple fact can inhibit an organization's ability to deal with new developments and is cancerous, leading to the eventual decay of morale and the loss of balance.

I wonder if anyone has ever figured out the lack of correlation between those who served in the military vs those who are into perception management? I bet you cannot name a single IT person that served in the military as enlisted personnel that you don't respect at any level? The reason that this occurs is that the military trains folks to make decisions quickly as the consequences for not doing so could be life or death.

The key thing in decision making which is lacking in most enterprise cultures is the lack of values. Folks in the military are familiar with their general orders and know that there will be no retribution even if their boss encourages them to do something contrary.

I remember being on guard duty in the Coast Guard for the first time and played back the general orders in my head all night. What stuck with me was when I needed to give a warning, how many times I needed to give the warning and finally when I could put a full metal jacket in someone's brain. At no time do I remember ever having to ask permission.

The reason you respect folks that were in the military is that they operate off of a set of unwavering values and not are simply following processes for abstract maturity reasons. Having a set of values will in many situations cause perception management types to get it twisted but over the long haul, they will come to respect you for standing to reason...

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