Remarkable times call for remarkable change. It's not enough to know a lot about a little, you need to be able to span boundaries and find opportunity in chaos, even if it means you having to risk destruction by breaking with the rules of the past. This is a blog of ideas that challenge conventional thinking about people, technology and the rules that got us here.

Black swan, white swan? Disaster project? It takes swan to know swan.


I'm still amazed to find the part of business projects that involve IT are often seen by the business as "the IT guys problem". If you were a CEO and about to re-jig the production line at your factory would that be "just a machinists thing"? If you were an airline introducing a new aeroplane, would that be "just a pilot thing"?

Turgid rhetoric aside, fact are that the speed of business innovation as well as risk is largely a function of the way you manage IT projects, IT operations and IT security. To think that it's a back room function no more strategic than a banana is to miss the point of what it means to be a 21st century enterprise.

The September 2011 HBR article Why Your IT Project May Be Riskier Than You Think - Harvard Business Review is recommended reading for anyone who's thinking about, in the process of or even living with the wreckage of a "bet the business" IT centric business project.

The only way to break the pattern of neglect is for business people to take a more active role in IT - one of the reasons it's been such a pleasure for me to review (and hopefully enrich) Gene Kim, Kevin Behr and George Spafford's forthcoming book "When IT Fails - a Novel". In my opinion, it follows in the history of Harvard case studies and should be mandatory reading for business and IT graduates alike.

To think that business and IT are so different as to need "alignment" is bone headed and so very not "crossing the streams".


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