Sensitive Business Person

I have been working in my current industry for over 10 years and I would classify myself as a mid-career professional.  Over the years I have needed to make career adjustments to satisfy my need to grow, make a difference, increase my income, increase my potential, and challenge myself.    I have noticed an interesting pattern in management that I would like to point out.

When managers have bad news, they hide it until they have to tell you.  There are always rumors that start to creep up and then the rumors increase until there is the “discussion” which happens most likely after you already know what is going on.

A great deal of managers take the ” I had no choice” approach to dealing with a problem.  They tell us that their hands are tied or they are in a bad situation, in other words they redirect blame.

When managers do something dramatic, it is always “just business.”   It isn’t your fault when something happens and it isn’t personal or is it?

Which brings me to my point.   If I make a career decision, it isn’t personal but every manager I have ever worked for in my professional years takes it personally.   I can’t tell you how many times I have seen managers talk about “just business” and I have heard it recently a lot with recent changes in my industry.

Why do they (managers) take it personal?

I have come to believe that there is no such thing as “just business.”   Decisions I make for my career have had nothing to do with my direct management.  As a matter of record, I care about the people I work for and with.   I care about their interests and their goals as well.   As professionals we really need to take a realistic position on how we feel about our staff and co-workers.   When we say something is a business decision, it is a two-way street.   I had a corporate leader in recent times say “If people don’t like what we are doing they will show me with their feet.”

When you talk tough and you distance yourself from your humanity expect the same treatment.   When you love people, and respect them and you show that you care for them they will be loyal to you and understanding when tough times arrive.  They will also be honest with you and open when they need to make tough decisions, and you as a leader will understand that it really isn’t personal.

Architecture Technology: Questions (DoD Specific)

1. What do we produce…so what…can anybody use it?

2. Do we interface with the customer properly?

3. How does the architecture concept relate to People, Process, Methods, Tools specifically related to the JMT, JCIDS and Federation, additionally cyber?
a) Is our mission and tasking consistent with the needs of the greater community?

Note* Architecture is rooted in capturing of methods and process.

4. What is the easiest, intuitive, most practical and cost effective way to share information (architecture context) across the multiple C/S/As?
a) What is the whole purpose behind architecture?
b) Why do you need to see an end to end process?
c) How is this related to DOTMLPF-P?

d) Why is DOTMLPF-P the foundation for all capability?  The whole point of architecture is to understand the DOTMLPF-P implication of your capability and underlying process.  What is needed in architecture should support this concept.

Note* Architectures are built in the language of architects and architectures need to be consumed in the language of the various consumers.

5. Should architectures be linked to business process or some other foundational system nomenclature?

6. Should this become the social gathering interface across C/S/As to find, share, and view Architectures and knowledge?

Note* It needs to be context driven.  The set of facts or circumstances that surround a situation or event; “the historical context” Is the information relative to what the user is looking for?

7. Does the site have information that the C/S/As need?
a) Is this relative or relevant in regard to the work that they are performing?
b) How do you know?

c) If the resource or site goes down what is the impact? How do you know?  Does anyone complain? If so, how many complaints?  Are they from multiple communities or a few?

    d) What methods or measures do you use to verify or validate?

Note* Just saying something is relevant isn’t enough.

8.  Is there a broad searching capability?

Note* The capability should be a one stop shop to search and view for anything housed in other repositories with Pass-through authentication so the user will not have to login to another site.

a) “Broad” meaning does the search / query across multiple domains?
b) What are the results of the searches?
c) What data does the search tool provide?
d) What are the limitations?
e) Who has access?
f) Is the data produced or presented standard in any way?

9. What is the purpose of architecture data?

a) What are the standards? Who made the standards?  Are they actual standards or guidance?

b) In terms of reuse, what is the value of architecture data relative to the cost of extracting and creating this data?

c) How do you maintain “architect intent” when extracting or using architecture data (not the products).

Note*   What does Architects intent mean?
Intent is bilateral – Both data producers and consumers have to have intent aligned within context.

d) Do we understand the differences between architecture data and architecture products?

Note*   If I have data and it is disconnected from the original product or view that was created, the data may or may not retain its reusability? It may not even be valid.

10. Why do we need to know where data is used in other architectures?
a) What is the relevance vs. the cost to create these mappings?
b) Who is the authority on data once the data is extracted and reused?

Note* Data creators i.e. Program Managers still maintain authority over data they created.

11. What are potential risks of presenting aggregated data from multiple repositories?
a) What methods have we used to evaluate these risks?

12. Is there value of using DM2 in its current form and for who is this value a benefit?

Note*Unfortunately, Many C/S/As do not care to reuse architecture outside of their domain since they already have many of the architectures built. These C/S/As want to be able to easily search and view other architectures.

Note* Many of these architectures are not DoDAF 2.0   Does this matter?

Note* There are not tools available today including DM2 that will allow the complete transfer of the architecture into another architecture tool how will this impact our mission?

**Further definition of Architect Intent**
Architectures are created by architects “for purpose”.  The data in the architectures is contextually aligned to the product as designed.  In order to use the data for analysis the “intent” of the product must convey to the data.  When Architect B is pulling multiple data threads from Architect A’s data it may not always naturally align.  If Architect B alters the data or maps it to make it align you change the nature of the data and can impact any further composition or analysis.

14) How can we leverage people collaborating as a tool as part of this effort?

15) How do our efforts relate to the C2 framework in this context?

a) How do we use the C2 framework in implementing an actionable and dynamic architecture?

Note* Functions for Organizing, Understanding, Planning, Deciding, Directing and Monitoring

b) Do we need tools for this framework to be actualized?

16) When have we asked for requirements from our stakeholders or customers?

Not in great detail but enough to model a service (Trust Computing)

As written here derived from concepts defined in Thomas Erl’s SOA series.  The fundamental idea is that there are three levels of services

Thomas takes great care to walk the spectrum and discuss use and reuse of services within the scope of the layer in order to accomplish the ultimate business objectives.

The reason why this model is important is because if you compare it to recent discussions on Maslow there is a clear and consistent pattern.  The lowest level of your “services” could be modeled as infrastructure or utility level services.  This layer can be decomposed to reveal additional components or sub components but YOU don’t HAVE to do that.   The reason that we shouldn’t decompose this layer is because it will only create confusion.   Part of working in the world of services or cloud computing is the fundamental understanding that it requires TRUST.   This engineering approach should really be called “Trust Computing”.

The second layer or entity layer isn’t an equivalent to Maslow’s needs but this layer does build upon and requires the lower level to be satisfied.  The same can be said about the task layer.  Without the lower layers the task layer can not and will not be composed.   As with Maslow we can’t reach self actualization.   We build service models in line with human nature.  Which gets us back to the concept and issue of trust.

Why this is “Trust Computing” and why that matters.   Services are costly.  The purpose of the service oriented or cloud computing approach is to reduce duplicated efforts, create and leverage process to ultimately meet and achieve business goals.  The idea is invest more upfront and in the future do more with less.  SOA is costly but the idea is that it is only costly up front and over the life of the investment you will save money.   The hidden requirement is that once a service is created and established if we are to leverage this service we must understand that this becomes a dependency.    We are dependent on the service provider and our business then must TRUST that this provider will maintain operations.

Since fundamentally the entire service model is based on the idea (hidden as it may be) that we MUST trust the service providers it is only logical to conclude that the service models themselves need not be complicated.  In other words, if you trust the provider then you trust them.

I am writing this point to simply point out the obvious.   Trust computing requires trust in people.    The service oriented model and cloud computing models are consistent with human behavior and human needs.  Understanding this may help leaders make better technical decisions.  Just a thought.






Happy Fathers Day

When I woke up this morning the only song resonating in my head was   Our children bring out the best in us!  Fathers day is not just for us, it is for them.  I hope all of you have a great day and spend the time with you kids that you both deserve. 

Happiness Driven Growth Model





Friedman points out in his NYT article that our earth is under considerable pressure  It is a sad reflection in a muddy pond.   If we think about all of the nonsense we deal with based on the perception that happiness has to do with wealth.    Interesting old paper here .

But really, look at what we sacrifice in the name of wealth and for what?   BPA in our food, toxic chemicals in our fruit and veggies and the government is concerned with if I am wearing my seat belt.   All of these are really about dollars for someone which in someway should make various groups wealthy which … creates happiness?    I can write on this for days but I will keep it short and sweet,  we are taxing our world and our bodies and our being.  We are wrapped up in the minutia of the day to day craziness.  Most of us require purpose in our lives, we want to make a difference in some way and we want what we perceive to be success.

Ask yourself this question..  what makes you happy?  Why aren’t you doing that?  It isn’t easy, but we can’t give up.  Our future depends on our understanding of what truly makes us happy and how we can help others.

Think about it.




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Something to think about while moving into Monday

Life is short.

Simply put when we don’t create separate and memorable events in our lives, our brain ignores what is commonly repeated.   The span of time between two points seems shorter as we grow older because we get into routines of constant repetition.

The only way to fight or counter this is to create different or non routine events in your life and make the memories.  Today I read an article The Top 5 regrets people make on their deathbeds.   You can follow the link and read them yourself but the number one regret was not having the courage to live life the way they wanted.   So, today thinking about moving into Monday or any day, don’t have regrets take the opportunity of today and have the courage to make your life what you want it to be.  If G-d was an engineer than destiny has many build plans, you can get where you need to be by making the choice of which one(s).

Consider this a message.