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The Business of IT

Insights into IT for fun and profit.

The value of planning for unplanned value

Your organization has one job: Deliver value to your customers. But not all kinds of value are the same, and not all manners of working to deliver value are equivalent. Do you know where your organization is devoting its resources? Let’s examine these parameters and how you can improve the way you work to deliver […] read more

Cost vs. Value

Are you in an organization that can not or will not fund improvements because there is zero cost-savings accrued as a result? Are important decisions forcefully hammered flat into a single-dimensional cost metric? Must you justify every action with a business case that boils down to a price tag? If so, I feel sorry for […] read more

Digital Transformation, DevOps, and the Bugaboo of Change

How do you feel when you contemplate the idea of changing the way your organization operates? Scared? Jaded? Excited? Your answer—and the answers your employees give—to this question reveals how difficult it will be for you to pursue Digital Transformation and DevOps. Ron Westrum described three types of organizational culture: pathological, bureaucratic, and generative. The […] read more

Innovation Motivation

Have you ever seen someone sporting the latest and greatest in technical wizardry—perhaps they are very proud of their new iWatch—but you are unimpressed by it? Sure you have. You have also seen someone sporting the latest and greatest in technical wizardry—perhaps in 2007 you thought this about the brand new product called the iPhone—and […] read more

How am I doing? That depends who is asking

How good are you at your favorite activity? Wait—don’t answer yet, because you’re probably wrong. Your perception of how good you are is influenced by how good you actually are. This is explained by the Dunning-Kruger effect, which is cognitive psychology’s name for the disparity between self-perception and reality. Here is what it looks like: […] read more

Software Factory Taxonomy

Do you wonder why your software organization struggles to deliver value rapidly, reliably, and consistently? It’s because something is wrong with either the organization’s structure or its relationships—or both. The following diagram, which I call Shlomo’s Software Factory Taxonomy Matrix, illustrates this effectively. Organizations are structured horizontally, delivering a single functional area such compliance or […] read more

The most significant improvements in a CIO’s businesses effectiveness come not from technical tips at all, rather consist of improving habits. Here are my top three: – Recognize that “networking” is about relationships: relationships between IT services that span organizational boundaries. The best way to improve relationships among IT services is to improve the human […] read more

Shlomo’s Keys to Technology Innovation

Drawing on my work with dozens of leading technology organizations for inspiration, I have synthesized three keys to encouraging innovation and growth. I call these Shlomo’s Keys to Technology Innovation. They are meaning, creativity, and habits. Meaning Connect the work people do with the values they personally identify with. People change only when they see […] read more

Improving software delivery performance

Your organization delivers software, so it should be obvious that improving your software delivery means improving your organization. But how to improve your software delivery organization? I’m going to tell you how, and you’ll be amazed at its simplicity: To improve an organization’s performance you need to improve all the components of the organization. And, you need […] read more

Habits: The Essence and the Goal of DevOps

Or, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective DevOps. You may have heard that the goal of DevOps is to rapidly deliver and reliably operate high quality software-based services. But that is only partially true. True, that is the desired result. But fostering the habits that produce that result consistently is integral to the goal. In […] read more