… and it’s only just ticked over to 08:00.
I started this blog entry no fewer than ten times in the last three months. I have tried under a range of titles and verbosity to map out my thoughts on the overall complexities of the roles of Enterprise Architects, and how that also comes with connotations and expectations that include the need to be a balanced mix of Consultants, Analysts, Forecasters, Futurists, Thought Leaders, Visionaries …
Yet, whilst we are meant to have those answers, we are still being asked to “shoot behind the duck” as we manage implementations, offerings and solutions that have passed their hype cycle climbs and peaks. Just like a perfect bowl of morning cereal, we are meant to wake up on the dawn of an engagement, be able to pour out a balance of business wholesomeness, technical nutrition and financial tastiness to provide the kick start needed. We’re meant to have the answers to be not too heavy on the legacy and not too light on the predictions, all while being “Just Right”. Continue reading
The value of maths problems from those mathematics classes when we were at school was not about whether you would ever use them in real life (though I have in some of the strangest ways!) but that it rewires your wetworks.
The same, I believe, goes with expanding your general knowledge of a field outside of the one you are in.
As a general rule, I think we tend to either stick to what we know, and learning tends to be within the scope of the general field we are in. It’s natural, and it’s normal, and it occurs in every industry with every skill set.
Ever notice how after a couple of weeks, any new exercises or physical activities you take become easier? If you were trying to lose weight, you’ll notice it’s about this time that the impact starts dropping off. It’s because our bodies are designed to increase efficiency. Just like our muscles, our minds will find ways to become efficient in the areas we use most.
To increase the ability to make a bigger impact and train our muscles (or synapses) to be able to handle more, we need to keep changing gears and exercises. This is one reason I continue down this philosophy of reading a great variety of topics and challenging myself to learn something new everyday.. I see it as a way to keep training my brain to be fit. Different paths to think, different ways to see a problem. Different ways to a solution.
That said, I am also lazy. I am. I tend to recycle work, re-use and re-post. A comment I made on the workplace collaboration site gets sanitised and reposted on one of my social networks, and sometimes the opposite happens.
I was asked after one such status cross-post (Thinking is difficult; That’s why most people judge” — Carl Jung) to recommend a reading list. So, I present my leveraged post from that network to here as this weeks blog entry.
Any chance of a reading list?
You know, this is a really hard thing for me. It’s like saying, any chance of recommending your favourite oxygen particles? I am reminded of a quote by Maud Casey
“I was born with a reading list I will never finish.”
So, where do I start? This is going to take a while …
One of the greatest rewards of a reading life is discovery and I think it’s important that you go through the process of exploration and discovery … and sometimes, just read the books that happen to find their own way into your hands. Continue reading
Something that was playing in the back of my head this weekend was this concept of Agility.
It’s not a new concept, nor revolutionary, but in thinking about the length of time it often takes to initiate access to (let alone the implementation of) a system or the ability to react to multiple organisational changes brought about by corrections, profit based downsizing, divisional right-sizing, right-shoring or the ever increasing challenge to do more with less … well, suffice to say, the concept of “agile responsiveness” comes up a fair bit. Continue reading
- Both my parents need surgery. Both are obstinate about accepting it not to mention requesting assistance. Both are becoming the children that I need to look after. It is both an unfortunate and an expected element of getting older I guess. I have managed to convince one to go in next week. The other is still a challenge.
- Ingrid was given notice of redundancy on Friday evening. Ignoring the inappropriateness of handing anyone a notice last thing on a Friday as they are walking out the door, it wasn’t , nonetheless, completely unexpected as the corporation she works for is in a declining market. However, now all we need to do is find a great corporation that will appreciate her skills, experience and work ethic.
- Ironically, considering we moved into Broadford to be closer to, thus have more time for, the farm … I have not had the time to work there in these last few months. Between the changes at work, aforementioned and non-mentioned family commitments, general maintenance around the residence and general run-of-the-mill life I have not had any time to do more than inspect fence lines.
- I have so many thoughts in my head that I wonder sometimes if it won’t cause a synaptic-pressure-bubble aneurysm one day. There are so many things I would love to share, but the complexities are what I find difficult to espouse in any form of clarity. Concepts that seem simple in my head are far more difficult to put on paper, as it were. It frustrates me. It’s like a writer’s block for non writers I guess. Just my luck.
- I haven’t socialised much in the same period of time. This is becoming a thing. It’s not that I am unhappy with the people I have in my life, and truth be told, I am too tired most days for the lack of socialisation to bother me, but, there are other days where I could do with more people, more stories, more drinking and more laughter.
- So it goes.
Part of my role these days is trying to gather, analyse and present data to better manage our group and in turn provide greater value to the organisation.
This is often frustrating. There are certain data elements that I expected to already be in place – not just collected, but collated and correlated as well. The fact that these data relationships do not exist slows my deliverables down quite considerably. In fact, even after I created a set of data sheets to show the data I require from a range of reports, creating a view of the correlation and effectively providing a multi-point relationship table – I still do not have what I require. I still am stuck behind a set of walls based on swimlanes, licensing limitations or simply some arbitrary “need to know” delineation. After nearly two months, what it effectively means is that I have been unsuccessfully trying to gather the data I require.
Part of the frustration, of course, comes from the fact that I see the problems and that part of me that is a lifelong Solutions person is ready to charge in and discuss the issues, provide an analysis and then fix them.
But that is no longer my role. Nor, it seems, is it met with grace when offered.
So, instead, whilst I await the potential second coming of an anointed one to provide me with a custom report, I am playing around with trying to kludge together a data cube in excel with the Microsoft PowerPivot add-on and some fancy pancy lookup tables. So far it has eventuated in a steady migraine, a nervous twitch and what I think was a stress induced aneurysm.
This has been a Monday post.
An Alternative Working Title was : MS Excel, the enterprise tool you didn’t know you had!
So, without revealing names or confidentialities, I had a contact reach out to me with this query, and so, I though that maybe, just maybe, there may be others who may be in a similar position. So, hopefully this helps and doesn’t obfuscate with the curse of knowledge.