The Architecture Manager – the Forgotten Enterprise Architecture Role

I’ve met many Architecture Managers over the years.  Sometimes they go by the title of “Chief Enterprise Architect” or “Chief IT Architect” and other times, the title is “Vice President of Architecture and Strategy” or some variant.  The men and women called to serve in this unique role have a distinct, and uniquely important role…

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Diversity Versus Replication of Organizational Processes and Information

I recently had the pleasure of joining a discussion among organizational development professionals.  During that discussion, one individual asked an interesting question: in a distributed organization with multiple operating units, spread geographically around the world, should the organizational structure of each unit be similar? The illustration that the questioner used: organization structure (org charts).  Should…

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We do what you say we will do – Integrity By Architecture

One of the chief complaints of senior executives in midsize and large companies is that their organizations don’t “execute” on the goals that they set.  This concern is so common, it’s the butt of jokes.  Entire systems of governance and measurement are created specifically to provide assurance to senior execs so that they can maintain…

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The “Right” Representation of the EA Value Cycle

In the world of Enterprise Architecture, we are still creating “shared” understanding of how to tell our stakeholders what we do.  There is no consistency in our diagrams or our descriptions just yet.  This post will discuss the different ways we present the value stream of Enterprise Architecture and will attempt to select a particular…

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Podcast on the Enterprise Architecture profession–Interview with CIPS’s Stephen Ibaraki

Way back in April, I announced the first of two podcasts with the Canadian Information Processing Society.  I just realized this weekend that I had not announced the availability of the second of those podcasts.  Error corrected. The second podcast, once again hosted by the inimitable Stephen Ibaraki, focuses much more on the growth and…

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Positioning an Enterprise Architect for Success

As I found in our Enterprise Architecture team in Microsoft, each time an Enterprise Architect is assigned to a specific area of the business, each one has a unique “engagement” with their stakeholders.  In very large organizations (like mine), there may be many different IT units as well as many different business units, all involved…

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Setting Up A New EA or BA Practice

Recently, I was contacted via this blog by an individual who had been challenged to set up a new Business Architecture practice within his company’s Enterprise Architecture team.  He reached out to me to ask about some books to read and some advice.  I’m expanding my message to him here.  As always, I’d love to…

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Should We Kill The Architecture Review Board?

OK… I’ll say it.  The whole idea of an Architecture Review Board may be wrong-headed.  That officially puts me at odds with industry standards like CobiT, ongoing practices in IT architecture, and a litany of senior leaders that I respect and admire.  So, why say it?  I have my reasons, which I will share here….

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Time-to-Release – the missing System Quality Attribute

I’ve been looking at different ways to implement the ATAM method these past few weeks.  Why?  Because I’m looking at different ways to evaluate software architecture and I’m a fan of the ATAM method pioneered at the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.  Along the way, I’ve realized that there is a flaw that…

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How Enterprise Architects can cope with Opportunistic Failure

You may not think that Failure is a desired outcome, and on the surface, there are some negative connotations to failure.  It just sounds “bad” for a team to fail.  However, there are times when a manager will INTENTIONALLY fail in a goal.  Let’s look at the scenario where a manager may choose to fail,…

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