Anders W. Tell Blog

Strategic Interweaving

Business Transformations through a structured integration and alignment of Strategy with Operations.
Anders is a Strategic Interweaver and Architect with international experiences on all levels, United Nation, EU, global, regional and national (standardisation) organisations, as well as national state agencies. 
NOV
16

High Performance Architecting - Become a Better Learner

HBR summarise the article in their 'Management tip of the Day':

"Research has found that learning agility – the ability to grow and to use new strategies – is a good indicator of whether someone can be a high performer. Learning-agile employees are able to jettison skills and ideas that are no longer relevant and learn new ones that are. To cultivate learning agility in yourself, try:

  • Innovating. Seek out new solutions. Repeatedly ask yourself “What else?” and “What are more ways I could approach this?”
  • Performing. When faced with complex situations, look for similarities to your past projects. Practice calming techniques, and listen instead of simply reacting.
  • Reflecting. Seek out input from others. Ask colleagues what you could have done better.
  • Risking. Look for “stretch assignments” where success isn’t a given.
  • Avoid defending. Acknowledge your failures and capture the lessons you’ve learned."

A few examples where learning come into play in FIA.

  • Innovating: generating, exploring, and screening scenarios, alternatives are key activities of the Bare Bones Architecting Inquiry Process.
  • Performing: looking at the past (the past-scenario) is a part of the general scenario map and recommended to address . Thinking about analogies, similarities is a key activity of BBAIP. Listening is a key green collaborative attitude, practice of BBAIP.
  • Reflecting: another key reasoning pattern explicitly encouraged and practiced in BBAIP.
  • Risking: thinking outside the box, stretching is an explicit part of, reasoning pattern in, BBAIP, in its Explore, Develop and Assess step.
  • Avoid defending: in the Motivate and Define step of BBAIP, shared intentions and rules of engagement are established for the architecting effort, including preferable collaborative attitudes and practices such defending. Lessons learned is an explicit part of the Communicate & Learn step of BBAIP.

 

All in all - Work Oriented Architecting is well equipped to perform.

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NOV
14

Choosing fundamental elements - Organisation Design

Naomi Stanford discuss, in the The Economist publication "Guide to Organisation Design - Creating high-performing and adaptable enterprise, 2nd edition", one aspect of organisation design that is essential - Organisation Structure. In Table 1.1 Naomi suggest that an organisation chart provides only some fundamental information needed by a professional organisational designer.

From an Interweaving Architecting point of view it is important to ensure that professional practitioners are allowed to use effective mental models, work products, tools, etc. that are needed for their work. An important question to address is if an interweaving or architecture framework support people in their profession?

The following table summarise Naomis's aspects:

What does the organisation chart tell you?

What doesn't the organisation chart tell you?

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NOV
09

Sustainability, a Mega Trend for Interweaving and Architecting

In the Harvard Business Review articles; "Why Sustainability Is Now the Key Driver of Innovation", by Ram Nidumolu, C.K. Prahalad, and M.R. Rangaswami, Sept 2009, and "The Sustainability Imperative", By David A. LubinDaniel C. Esty, May 2010, the authors analyse the effects of the mega-trend Sustainability on innovation and strategies.

The first article outline how most companies go through five stages on the path to becoming sustainable.

Stage 1: Viewing Compliance as Opportunity

Stage 2: Making Value Chains Sustainable

Stage 3: Designing Sustainable Products and Services

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NOV
07

Are you an Architect?

So, you work with architectures, but do you have an architects personality? According to David M. Keirsey and other authors there exists an Architect temperament or personality. Take a look, and see if you fit the characteristics.

"An Architect is an Abstract Utilitarian and Rationalist:

Rationals are abstract and objective. Seeking mastery and self-control, they are concerned with their own knowledge and competence. Their greatest strength is strategy. They excel in any kind of logical investigation such as engineering, conceptualizing, theorizing, and coordinating. The two roles are as follows:

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NOV
02

The value of Architecting - The problems of finding the Unique Selling Point

What are Architecting and Enterprise Architecture bringing to an organisation that is essential, material, and value creating, that no other professions can deliver?

It is a subject that is current and most architects has spent time on it. In public forums such as LinkedIn one can find discussions such as "What are the various value propositions that EA offers to an enterprise?" covering the subject.

When browsing through various discussions one cannot help noticing a particular kind of architecting/architecture value statements. Here are two examples:

"Validate and prioritise new changes against current and future state needs. (improve investment decisions)."

"EA helps: Identify all of the elements necessary to achieve the vision and enterprise success."

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OCT
31

Is it that bad?

I stumbled on an article by Jason Bloomberg, in Forbes magazine, from 2014 with the title "Is Enterprise Architecture Completely Broken?"

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jasonbloomberg/2014/07/11/is-enterprise-architecture-completely-broken/

Jason starts the article with a sad image of the life of enterprise architects.

Remember Milton, the red stapler guy from the movie Office Space? Useless to his company, he had been laid off years before, but due to an unexplained glitch, he was never informed and kept getting paid. So there’s Milton, showing up for work day after day, clueless about why he has nothing useful to do. Makes you wonder: are there any Miltons in your organization? Sadly, for some large enterprises, you need look no further than the Enterprise Architects.

Jason then continues...

The cost savings and responsiveness benefits that EA has purported to deliver have been few and far between. Stories of stalled or misdirected EA initiatives vastly outnumber bona fide examples of EA efforts leading to measurable business value.

and then with ..

In fact, just what an Enterprise Architect is actually supposed to do is curiously still up for debate, more than 25 years after EA’s invention.

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OCT
28

Interweaving and Architecting as Integrator of minds and work (bridging)

Both the Personal Mastery by Architecting™ and Architecting for Managers™ disciplines are designed to offer an unique possibility to people and organisations based on the idea of bridges.

So what is a bridge and what can it do for persons and organisations?

A bridges is in a simply sense anything (abstract or concrete) that two or more people, communities are aware of, or use for communication, collaboration, coordination and integration of their work.

The benefit of identifying, describing, building capacity for, and using bridges objects lies in their power to bridge what is going in two or more worlds. A few examples:

  • A Case Management System (a bridge) a Case (a bridge) integrate the work of people with many different functions and competences.

  • In management of larger portfolios of business, digital transformation efforts the idea's of benefit (a bridge) and outcome (a bridge  are used to integrate work across projects.

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JUL
29

Introducing Live Architecture

Before we give some examples of liveness, it is beneficial to explore what is secondary to live architectures. The liveness quality does not mean that architects collect all available information in an enterprise, organisation, or community because some information is interesting, i.e. It is not a question of:

  • Enterprise Knowledge Management, 
  • Information Management, 
  • Business Intelligence, or 
  • Storing architecture information in a repository, 

Architecture representations are although part of Enterprise Knowledge Management. However, employing several librarians (or architects) to maintain repositories has been found to be largely not cost-effective.

So, what is it?

In FIA an architecture and its parts are tightly Interweaved with people and work they do with others. Here architectural elements are relevant, material to decision making, acceptable and usable by people, and essential or fundamental. This means that key parts of an architecture are visible to ordinary people (other than architects) in their daily life, and not embedded in models behind abstract concepts and boxes.

Where can you find it?

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JUL
26

Interweaving and Architecting as Storytelling

Interweaving and Architecting as Storytelling

The Power of Storytelling from Harvard Business Review:

The interweave and architectural lenses enables a unique kind of story to be told about our world, a company, department, situation, building, ship, enterprise, or community. This story provides focus and frame on what is important, fundamental, essential, and  Interweaves the parts.

An interweave and architectural story is told a little bit different based on the intended audience and who they are and what they do, who do they collaborate with, where they stand, their attention, questions to be answered, problems to solve, information needs, what they look at, and what they are supposed to do with the architectural knowledge. 

The main characters and settings, the intended audience and their collaborative work situations are important to keep in mind when formulating and telling an story. The passions, challenges, conflicts, complications, and opportunities of the work place are the centre piece the story. Interweave and architectural thinking as well as interweaving and architecting practices provide many tools, techniques, considerations, and forms for the resolution part of the story. Interweaving bridges people and their work across socially, technically constructed and natural boundaries.

An interweave or architectural story can be interactive and live and used to capture corporate history as well as to provide a backbone and structure for enterprise knowledge management. A story can convey knowledge in the form of definitions, descriptions, explanations, predictions, hypothesis, and prescriptions.

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JUL
26

Interweaving & Architectural Thinking as a pair of Lenses or Glasses

Interweaving and Architectural thinking can be thought of as a putting on a pair of coloured lenses or glasses that frame and filter the world. These lenses emphasise and include the most important, fundamental and interweaving elements that architects should focus their attention, efforts on.

The lenses reach far beyond design efforts, across the whole life cycle of an enterprise, company, society, or state agency, including all that Interweave their parts.

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JUL
13

Constraints in Interweaving & Architectural Thinking

Is Constraint something that should be addressed in I&A? Yes, constraints and limits are important aspects of daily life for organisations, enterprises, in economics, for production planning, etc.

However, the constraint is not there alone. Interweaves and Architects work in the world of humans where people use rich expressions to relate and describe their worlds. It has been shown that humans can relate badly to deficit approaches where the focus is on problems, what’s wrong, what needs to be fixed, or what’s missing. A shared focus on the positives sides, what might be, the opportunities, what you have, and freedoms, is equally (or more) important.

The positive sides, capabilities, and freedoms can be found emphasised in Appreciative Inquiry by David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva, the Capability Approach by Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, and the Heart-Mind inquiry by Dalai Lama Centre.

Does interweaving & architecting deliver only constraints? No, A delivery is than constraints.

I&A often involves inquiring, interpreting, evaluating the world through architectural lenses, for the purpose of generating knowledge. This knowledge can be in the form of descriptions, explanations of the past, hypothesis, or predictions.

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JUL
06

Interweaving & Architectural Thinking - as Intent

In this framing article, we visit Intention in order to explore the frame, scope (what is included, excluded) and scope of interweaving and architectural thinking (I&A).

It is often said that architects work ‘mainly’ with creating blueprints that contain an intended architecture. But is All that an interweaver or architect is concerned about intentional? The short answer to this question is No. The longer answer follows in a brief format.

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JUN
22

Framing the Essence of Interweaving and Architecting

In the search for the underlying meaning, essence of an idea and practice, it is often beneficial to visit and explore areas, topics, aspects, or subject fields that are known to be interweaved with the explored ideas, artefacts, and practices. In order to explore the frame, focus, scope (what is included, excluded) and scope, we visit intersecting, or overlapping, ways of thinking, theories, practices, etc. that are known to be relevant to the idea of architecture, the practices of interweaving and architecting). 

It it is worth mentioning that an underlying belief for the Framework of Interweaving and Architecting approach (FIA) is, that it is beneficial for inhabitants of an enterprise, organisation, etc. to look at their worlds through the lenses of the interweave and architecture. A lens that focus on the salient, fundamental,important, material, essential, or instrumental elements that interweave the strands of an organisation, enterprise, building, facility, system.

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MAY
30

Advancing the Interweaving and Architecture Discourse

Note: This article is an In-front-of-the-curtain article aimed at practitioners. For the scientifically inclined, Behind-the-curtain articles will be published on the website: <fia.workem.org>.

In the interconnected, and a global world of today the ideas of the interweave and architecture provides ways of thinking, ways of doing, work products, and tools that address complications, complexity and the manifold of perspectives in human enterprises.

Interweaving and architecting provides unique means to untangle and interweave the complex multi-disciplinary and interconnected fabric of enterprises, organisations, communities, technical, and information systems. Where peoples identity, beings, doings, belonging and becoming, and fortunes relate to one another.

This article introduces general interweaving and architectural practices and approaches to the fields of interweaving and architectural discourse. As such it represents a continuation of the short series Ways of Interweaving and Architecting that aimed at exploring different ways to interweave and architect. This work is alive, and a work in progress since an interweaving and architectural practice without dynamics quickly becomes rigid and obsolete.

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JAN
19

Ways of Architecting #7 - Who is architecting?

This seventh article is continuation of the series that address "Ways of Architecting".

The new aspect introduced here provide additional characterisation of architecting by focusing on who performs architecting.

Architecting can be performed in many ways, some ways are recommended by professional enterprise architecture associations, some has evolved through practices, and some exists outside the profession. A strong tradition from the IT, engineering origin of Enterprise Architecture is that a professional organisational unit, or function is responsible for architecting. However looking outside the IT/engineering departments, in the wider enterprise and its organisational units, architects are not commonly found. Instead architecting can be considered as being performed by professionals (CxO, strategist, analysts, organisation designers, managers, etc.) that co-create fundamentals (important, essential enabler, material)elements of the enterprise, make material decisions, and use the same techniques, models as architects. This often unknowingly of that what they do can be called architecting.

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DEC
11

Ways of Architecting - Belief System, Theory, Method, Technique

This sixth article is continuation of the series that dives into "Ways of Architecting".

The new aspects introduced here provide additional characterisation of architecting by focusing on elements of ways of addressing, thinking about architecture, and ways of working with architectures.

A specific approach to architecture and architecting may involve specific assumptions about the real world and architectures, belief systems, theories, principles, and architecting techniques, methods. These may significantly determine characteristics  and qualities of actual architectures, as well peoples perceptions and conceptions of architectures. 

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DEC
03

Ways of Architecting - Scope, Type, Kind, Naming

​This fifth article is continuation of the series that dives into "Ways of Architecting". The new aspects introduced here provide additional characterisation of architecting by pointing to the importance of the object of architecting and what types and kinds of architecture that are relevant to architecting efforts. At the end I include an ide...
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DEC
02

Architectural Drafter (Modeller) - A Profession

Architectural Drafter (Modeller) - A Profession

Architects and architectural drafters (modellers) work together in ideating, designing, evaluating enterprises and organisations. They both share a passion for ideas, motivations, decision making, quality, and transformation projects involving commercial, government and non government organisations. While they may have similarities and work in the same industry, the responsibilities they perform are different, as well as experience and competency requirements.

It is interesting to note that in the world of Enterprise Architecture, the two different disciplines are not widely recognised. 

This is unfortunately since an important professional path is not available for aspiring architects. And also because the vital distinction between architecting and modelling becomes blurred, leading to the risk that companies may be hiring inspired modellers rather than architects.

In the Work Oriented approach to architecting the two disciplines of Architecting and Architectural Drafting is recognised as distinct, albeit important.

REF Architectural Drafter (modeller) for more Information on Architectural Drafters (modellers).

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NOV
16

Ways of Architecting - Architecting styles in history

From the world of Building architecture, we find the following Timeline of architectural styles.

The next articles covers different architecture styles in history.

 

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NOV
11

Ways of Architecting - Tradition, Style, Taste, and Fashion

This third article is continuation of series that dives into "Ways of Architecting" Series. 

The new aspects presented here are tradition, customs, style, taste, and fashion. These important aspects of contemporary architecting are worth considering by organisations applying architecting practices, architects themselves, and scholars. Knowing where the discipline comes from is always valuable, especially in the fast paced and interconnected era of Internet. The ideas of tradition, custom, styles, taste, and fashion promise to enrich the understanding of any particular variant of architecting or architecture, their current impact, future possibilities, and challenges. At the end of the article I am outlining a set of characteristic of a tradition that has evolved in the field of enterprise architecting - Traditional EA.

For the purpose of this series of articles, and not to dwell in details, the definitions of terms are common sense oriented and not formally defined.

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