IT And Interdependance
July 11, 2008
I recently read John Kotter’s Leading Change , as the author identifies in this quote;
we don’t realize a crucial fact: changing highly interdependent settings is difficult
The more interrelationships and dependancies that exist within a given environment – the more difficult the human and technical processes of change becomes.
I think you would agree that scheduling a free evening for an event can be easy with two people – but try and get consensus on a time and date with thirty people.
Information Technology is Interdependent!
And guess what – IT by its very nature is interdependent. The fabric of our businesses are woven with technology, from Accounts Payable to Purchasing to Customer Management. Is it any wonder why it can be so difficult to improve internal process with technology?
Many businesses in the small, medium enterprise space make this tendancy worse by not having any communication with IT, or about IT. You may have an IT Manager – but it is often an empty title as his or her mandate is simply to keep that pesky email server or database running. Who needs to meet regularly with IT?
Blame also resides with IT staff, too many of us don’t think strategically enough – or at least don’t articulate it properly if someone is actually listening.
The Hard Questions
As a small business manager, I have every confidence that you pose the “hard questions” to your finance adviser, your prospective suppliers and any other critical relationship that you are entering. You ask these questions to know what change is occurring and to intervene if it is a “bad” change.
But you have to ask the those hard questions with IT staff as well – but to do that, to ask those questions, means that IT has to be part of the conversation. The hard questions are not a one time thing after something failed to work properly – they are daily or weekly meetings on the inter-relationships of your organization and its technology infrastructure.
The questions have to be the “Why do we do this?” the “How do we do this?” the “What are the alternatives?” questions. Change happens – Change is difficult, but if you are not openly talking about it – it can be impossible.
As an SMB Business Manager – Are you asking these questions on a regular basis?
You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the RSS icon on the Home Page!