Architecture is (normally) about buildings, cities and infrastructure (and the like). You can see it around you and everybody has an opinion about it. You either like the style of that building or you don’t and all the nuances in between.
Business is less visible but also there – everybody has an opinion about it. You should make more profits, cut your costs, build an infrastructure and construct an organization that formalizes the (human) interaction, etc, etc.
If we do all that, why bother about calling it business architecture? Well you shouldn’t but some concepts will help you with issues that most managers are dealing with:
- Coherence. How do we make sure that what we invent on one end will fit with a solution at the other end.
- Balance. How do we know whether we are using all our talents and not only a small part of them.
- Overview. What the hell are we doing anyhow. Our business have become so complex that I’m wondering if all elements point in the same direction to meet that goal.
So architecture can help us. The nice thing about architecture is that you can look at one company and discuss about STYLE, FUNCTION and MATERIAL or construction. Three elements you continue to see (in recurring patterns). Style is the most important, because it drives your business. It is not only the driving force behind marketing, but also behind, sales, production, human resources and IT. So if you have found your style, the first problem - of coherence - has being dealt with.
Up for the next one.
© 2005 Hans Bool
Hans Bool is the founder of Astor White a traditional consulting company that offers online management advice. Astor Online solves issues in hours what normally would take days. You can apply for a free demo account