This is what I see as the Top 10 qualities of an Architect
- Helicopter View
- In Tune with the client
- Business understanding & solving Business problems using Technology
- Excellent communication and Presentation Skills
- Competent in their field
- Calm under pressure
- Risk Analysis and Mitigation
Have you seen practices that you know could kill an Enterprise Architecture practice? I have. A recent LinkedIn thread asked for examples, and I came up with my top ten. I’d love to hear your additions to the list.
How to screw up an EA practice
- Get a senior leader to ask for EA without any idea of what he is going to get for it. If necessary, lie. Tell leaders that EA will improve their agility or reduce complexity without telling them that THEY and THEIR BUSINESS will have to change.
- Set no goals. Allow individual architects to find their own architecture opportunities and to do them any way they want. Encourage cowboy architecture.
- Buy a tool first. Tell everyone that they need to wait for results until the tool is implemented and all the integration is complete.
- Get everyone trained on a “shell framework” like Zachman. Then tell your stakeholders that using the framework will provide immediate benefits.
- Work with stakeholders to make sure that your EA’s are involved in their processes without any clear idea of what the EA is supposed to do there. Just toss ’em in and let them float.
- Delete all the data from your tool. Give no one any reason why. You were just having a bad hair day.
- Get in front of the most senior people you can, and when you get there, tell them how badly they do strategic planning.
- Change your offerings every four months. Each time, only share the new set of architectural services with about 20% of your stakeholders.
- Create a conceptual model of the enterprise that uses terms that no one in the enterprise uses. Refer to well known business thinkers as sources. When people complain, tell them that they are wrong. Never allow aliases.
- Every time you touch an IT project, slow it down. Occasionally throw a fit and stop an IT project just for fun. Escalate as high as you can every time. Win your battles at all costs.
Your career will be short. 🙂
A generalist knows a little about a lot of things, and, crucially, how to connect them together. Good generalists are well aware that they are actually quite small fish in what is often a very big pond.
A specialist knows a lot about a single often very-little thing. Good specialists can be quite big fish, though only in a relative sense within their own often quite small pond.
Combining agile and non-agile into a jerry-rigged mishmash misses the point of working in an agile way.
Being agile doesn’t mean you give up on governance or deadlines. The idea that agile somehow “needs” a waterfall-type methodology to give it control and governance is nonsense. When you work in an agile way, governance is built into every step of what you do. You build and iterate based on ongoing user research. You build what users need, not what you guessed might be a good idea before you even started building.
A bit late with the update. On holiday from work (back tomorrow) and busy fixing the house, taking photo’s and flying a drone. Normal stuff really. Links this week are pretty Apple heavy – fun fun fun!
Solo – average film and would have probably ditched it half way through if it wasn’t a Star Wars movie.
Bodyguard – well done all involved. Stuck the landing and plenty left to take another series forward.
Today’s the day that Apple release their biggest products of the year. New iPhones, new Apple Watches. Huzzah! From the keynote last week and also the reviews that have come out I’ve a few thoughts on this year’s products that are longer (almost) than a tweet or two.
- The iPhone names are just bonkers to me. Everyone calls the iPhone X the iPhone X and not the iPhone 10. I’ve been that guy that corrects people too – what a twat. So this years iPhones being called iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR means even more that they will be called XS, XS Max and XR. No one is going to see XS and think that should be pronounced 10S. The names probably don’t make any dent on sales but just doesn’t make sense to me when everyone (quite rightly in my opinion) praises Apple for their marketing genius.
- iPhone XS is one of the smaller S upgrades we’ve seen. Same screen, faster chip, slightly improved camera, it records in stereo, slightly tweaked colours and that’s about it? Looks the same too.
- The XS Max is exactly the same as the XS apart from being a bigger screen and slightly improved battery life. Prefer this than when the Plus phones came out and it wasn’t only the best screen but also the best camera – that stung if you didn’t want. huge phone.
- The XR surprised me. Expected lesser screen, last years A11 chip, last years camera etc but the only difference is a larger but less pixel dense screen but all this years goodies in the XS are in the XR apart from the dual camera’s. And the XR comes in some great colours.
- The XS is the smallest phone you can buy from Apple at 5.5 inches. That’s not small and by killing the SE they will lose some customers to Android.
- The new A12 chip and it’s neural engine is quite the upgrade from last years and is driving a jump in computational photography. Smart HDR looks much better than the HDR modes we’ve seen in Apple products up to now. The amount of computing that is taking place when you press the (virtual) shutter button is boggling. Google’s Pixel 2 was regarded as the best smartphone camera in the last couple of years thanks to how much computation they were doing. Apple have made some big improvements this year and in some tests so far looks better to my eyes than the Pixel 2, but in other tests the Pixel 2 produces the better image. That’s before the Pixel 3 come out next month. To read a lot more about the camera improvements I recommend reading John Grubers iPhones XS review which details a lot of the camera improvements in the XS. Apple really buried the improvements on stage.
- Not iPhone related, but Siri Shortcuts in iOS 12 is worth spending some time on. Apple acquired the Workflow app and team 18 months ago and Shortcuts is the result. Can get some great results from Shortcuts and really make Siri more powerful than it currently is. Many app’s have updated this week with Siri support but their features are pretty buried which is something that Apple need to help surface.
- Apple Watch series 4 was the standout for me from last week’s keynote. Bigger screen, focus on health, complications, new colours, faster chip. All in all this was more exciting and a bigger leap than the phones that Apple launched this year.
- Apple gaining FDA approval to market the watch as an ECG device is a big deal. It’s only one rather than 12 points that a standard ECG captures but being able to do this anytime and pass that info to a medical professional has major implications. Alongside the fall detection and some other heart notifications it’s good to see that Apple finally have clear focus on what the Apple Watch is and isn’t.
- Prices go both phone and watch have creeped up this year. Buying Apple was always expensive but it’s getting ever steeper. Increasing price a way of keeping up overall sales as numbers decline in an ever saturated market? Time will tell.
- No AirPower. No new AirPods. Shocker. All the rumours say AirPower is dead but it appears in the XS leaflet that people will get with their new phones. So still in development? Apple should stop previewing products that aren’t ready and get back to what they were good at – here’s a new product, buy it in a couple of days for delivery next week. Stop the bullshit.
- No iPad or Mac news either so expect some press releases or an event in October. If the iPad is slimmer borders, Face ID, USB C as many rumours are stating then I can’t see that being a press release.
So did I buy anything? No new iPhone for me this year. Small update really when you look at the iPhone X that I currently have and with phones now at £1k it’s an every 2-3 year purchase like an iPad for me. I did order a new watch though. The Series 0 has done well but struggled in the last 6 months with speed and also battery life. Really looking forward to getting the Series 4 as I use the Watch for workouts, notifications etc and being able to playback music and podcasts, answer calls etc without a phone during a workout will be a real step forward for me.
If you are getting a new phone or watch today (or next month!), enjoy it. The last year with the X has been great – easily the best phone Apple has made…until now.
Weather has turned and I’ve got the next 10 days off. Woo hoo. The break will be good though no matter what the weather has in store.
The Mighty Redcar – loving this. Great documentary – Redcar reminds me of Barrow. The soundtrack is also one of the best I’ve heard in years. Grab it on Apple Music or Spotify.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom – Formulaic and predictable. Yawn.
New toys arrived. Mavic 2 Pro – faster, longer battery, great range and a much improved image. A lot to like. Looking forward to some time off later in the month and getting some drone and normal pic’s out and about around Scotland.
Bodyguard – gets better and better
Press – well made, great cast but flat opening for me
Hang Ups – so funny
6 months since buying my last drone…I may have bought another. There’s no may about it, the Mavic 2 Pro is currently on it’s way from China. Can’t wait to fly it and see the image improvements.
Finsihed All or Nothing but it got a bit samey though the season and the last couple felt very padded. Interesting insight.
Bodyguard on BBC. Oooof – loved it. Jed Mercurio is at the top of his talents right now and Bodyguard got off to a flier – the cast were top notch too.