Do stakeholder analysis. Cuddle the uninterested powerful ones, forget about the enthusiasts without power. Agree goal. Deliver implementable roadmap. The rest is just nice-to-have.
That was one message from today’s slot on The Open Group’s Architecture Framework (TOGAF) at the Open Group’s quarterly meeting in Amsterdam. In one session, two self-described “evil consultants” ran a workshop on how to extract most value from an Enterprise Architecture (EA) to institutional change.
While they agreed about the undivided primacy of keeping the people with power happy when doing EA, the rest of their approach differed more markedly.
Dave Hornford zero-ed in mercilessly on the do-able roadmap as the centre of the practice. But before that, find those all-powerful stakeholders and get them to agree on the organisational vision and its goal. If there is no agreement: celebrate. You’ve just saved the organised an awful lot of money in an expensive and unimplementable EA venture.
Once past that hurdle, Dave contended that the roadmap should identify what the organisation really needs – which may not always be sensible or pretty.
Jason Uppal took a slightly wider view, by focussing on the balance between quick wins and how to EA the norm in an organisation.
The point about ‘quick wins’ is that both ‘quick’ and ‘win’ are relative. It is possible to go after a long term value proposition with a particular change, as long as you have a series of interim solutions that provide value now. Even if you throw them away again later. And the first should preferably have no cost.
That way, EA can become part of the organisation’s practice: by providing value. This does pre-suppose that the EA practice is neither a project, nor a programme- just a practice.
An outline of the talks on the Open Group’s website