Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Suboptimal Thinking within Enterprise Architecture Practices

Many organizations attempt to run their "airline" by ordering DC-3's for their transatlantic runs, building huge airports which are "best practice" based off Heathrow or LAX, giving the aircrew mechanics crash courses in nautical engineering, and selling free parachutes with each airline ticket as "added value". What is the stimulus for stopping the insanity of how enterprise architecture is practiced?

Consider the infamous Winchester House and its architecture that created rooms with no doors and stairs that lead to nowhere. At some level though, through the lens of perception management, it satisfied the whims of its creator and was built for purpose.

Many of us will focus on the fact that the Winchester House was built in a highly inefficient manner but at some level, we aren't acknowledging the inefficiencies in our own shops for fear they may be disturbingly similar.

What can we learn from the Winchester House? After all, it had an overall plan and a big framework, yet the outcome wasn't aesthetically pleasing. Maybe we need to figure out the line as professionals we shouldn't cross when it comes to managing perception? We need to remember that enterprises live and thrive beyond just the current person at the helm.

Lets face it, a solution needs a problem. If the people required to change do not perceive there is a problem, you can spend from now until the cows come home but you will never convince them to change and will be doomed to creating great plans, large frameworks and delivering monstrosities that are pleasing to the customer but no one else that comes afterwards...

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