The Art of Enterprise Architecture – Section Eight – Variation in tactics

In work, the Chief Architect receives his instructions from the CEO, collects his team and focuses his resources.

When in difficult situations, stay agile and work to seek out possibilities. In situations where high politics intersect, join hands with the stakeholders. Do not stay in dangerously isolated positions, remember it is not your architecture it belongs to all the stakeholders. In complex situations, you must resort to strategy, planing your actions in advance. In chaotic situations, you must throw all your wits and resources at the problem taking action as you encounter the possibilities.

There are opportunities which must not be acted upon, problems which must not be attacked, solutions which must not be used, politics which must not be contested, concerns of the stakeholders which must not be addressed.

The Chief Architect who thoroughly understands the advantages that accompany variation of tactics knows how to handle his teams. The Chief Architect who does not understand these, may be well acquainted with the configuration of the enterprise, yet he will not be able to turn his knowledge to practical account. So, the student of architecture who is unversed in the art of architecture of varying his plans, even though he be acquainted with the Five Advantages, will fail to make the best use of his teams. Hence in the wise leader’s plans, considerations of advantage and of disadvantage will be blended together. If our expectation of advantage be tempered in this way, we may succeed in accomplishing the essential part of our schemes. If, on the other hand, in the midst of difficulties we are always ready to seize an advantage, we may extricate ourselves from misfortune.

Reduce the effect of hostile stakeholders by inflicting as little damage on them as possible. Hold them constantly at arms length. Engaged in their own best interests you will make them rush to any given point freeing you to create value for those who such desire.

The art of enterprise architecture teaches us to rely not on the likelihood of the possibilities and problems not arising, but on our own readiness to receive them; not on the perils of change not afflicting us, but rather on the fact that we have made our position unassailable.

There are at least five dangerous traits which may affect a Chief Architect and leads to the destruction of capital:

  1. Recklessness – taking inappropriate actions
  2. Cowardice – not being able to act on the situation
  3. Incommunicado – not communicating appropriately
  4. Micromanagement – not being able to delegate decision and work
  5. Insecureness – not being able to receive and give criticism

When an architecture fails and its leader is sent home, the cause will surely be found among these five traits. Let them be a subject of meditation

Some assorted references

  1. The thirty-six stratagems
  2. Capital Economics
  3. Micromanagement

—————————————————————-

You can read Section One here: section-one-strategy

You can read Section Two here: section-two-doing-architecture

You can read Section Three here: section-three-planning-the-architecture

You can read Section Four here: section-four-tactical-dispositions

You can read Section Five here: section-five-directing-energy

You can read Section Six here: section-six-strengths-and-weaknesses

You can read Section Seven here: section-seven-maneuvering

The text above is based upon the writings of Sun Tzu in the Art of War. Several translations has been read prior to writing the text above, but the most prominently used translation is the one retrieved from “http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Art_of_War_(Sun)”. I consider the text above a work in progress…

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