Architecture Governance – Abusing the Buzz Word

Well – it’s been far too long since I wrote – but I am committed to writing more. I’ve just been exposed to “governance Overload”. What is it you say?

Well – after a weekend in Boston and time with the ultimate of buzz word abusers (this generic professional group shall remain nameless), I’m sick of “get it done”, “dropping the ball”, etc. etc.

Instead – I come home to a day on my new gig and abuse of the word governance. This blog has turned into a bit of a rant against the abusers of IT architecture and now it’s time to spout off against those who can’t find their way into a wikopedia entry.

Architecture Governance is different that IT Governance. IT Governance is NOT, and I repeat NOT project prioritization. It might include it, but it is not it. IT Governance includes the process around IT decision making, adhering to standards, patterns and process guidelines. Architecture Governance is the process around governing adhering to Architecture frameworks, guidelines, principles and standards and the methods to make your way around them.

Why does this matter? Confusion about terms such as governance is rampant and since people like to exchange the word “architecture” for the term “diagram”, it deserves more references here. Governance is about the process of systematically and orderly controlling the process around decisions. In this case architecture or IT governance. In my case, Architecture governance allows those who wish to sway from the norm to get a say and have a chance at doing something that is right, but isn’t necessarily status quo.

Today I sat through a meeting requiring an architectural decision.

For a change, I am in a position of both authority and influence and got to be the governing panel. I listened to those who wanted to argue their case for option B when option A was status quo. After all was said and done I couldn’t choose either. Both were silly and didn’t make security, architecture, nor financial sense. It was option C that won out. See – what a great example of how architecture reviews make sense and are worth the effort. No one came expecting option C to be chosen even though they were afraid to choose it.

Option A was status quo and everyone geared up for option B. By bringing it to my attention, raising it to the top of my radar screen, option C was up for consideration and it won. See – there is a point. There is democratic decision and discussion. Architecture review boards, their process and methods are worth the time and efforts attributed to them.

that’s my thoughts for tonight – hopefully I’ll be able to share more another day – this was fun!


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