“Picture this. You are building the home of your dreams. You can already see and feel yourself inside it, the years flashing through your mind filled with family gatherings, quiet moments, and just life. You send a one-line e-mail to your general contractor summarizing your vision. The following day, all the workers show up, ready to realize your magnificent concept into physical reality. What could go wrong? - Would You Build a Dream Home Without a Blueprint?“
This is the compelling analogy @WhyndeKuehn uses in her new book, Strategy to Reality, to drive home the importance of incorporating business architecture to facilitate, lead, and unify strategy and strategy execution A company may have an robust strategy, however, if the parts are not aligned to deliver it, delayed outcomes and additional costs will surely follow. The delays and costs, if substantial, may be mitigated with an execution plan guided by business architecture activities. Doing enough business architecture, will in turn support strategic outcomes, streamline delivery, and optimize operating efficiencies aligned with strategic milestones.
Kuehn provides timely and seasoned advice to corporate leaders and change agents on the importance of evolving business architecture to fulfill the corporate strategy. Her guidance provides an overview of who, what, how, and why business architecture can help corporations deliver on their strategy. Whynde, systematically dives into more detail in following chapters to explain the heart of business architecture, the value, establishing and developing the team, and partnering with other teams to scale the practice. After a few pages, you will quickly get drawn into the content she has so elegantly provided.
Reading Whynde Kuehns’ Strategy to Reality was an insightful experience for me, personally. Sometimes, being so close to the challenges, one overlooks to consider where the potential root cause originated. The past week has given me time to reflect on this content and my past experiences from numerous years in IT organizations, and involved in various sizes of projects. Whynde's book is really getting momentum on social media, supporting the leadership and change agents to understand many of the nuances where business architecture can effectively support the execution of a harmonized corporate strategy. Imagine a strategy execution where the lines of businesses are united and know exactly what they need to do, together, to drive the corporate vision and desired outcomes.
C-level leaders and above needs to read Strategy to Reality to consider how business architecture can help transform their corporate strategic lifecycle and culture.
This is also a great reference for Enterprise Architects, to support the development and integration of business architecture capabilities to a strategic level.
Charge: After you have read the book, buy a few copies for leaders in your organization.
10. “business architecture and business architects within the enterprise architecture discipline is as the tip of the spear”
9. “Capabilities help us to see the business at rest, but without value streams they lack context for how they are used to create value.”
8. “business ecosystem is multiple organizations working together towards a shared purpose, to create greater value”
7. “The roles of strategists and business architects are interlocking where strategists formulate strategy and business architects inform and translate strategy.”
6. “Business architecture informs enterprise architecture scenarios and decision-making with business direction, priorities, language, and context. It can also help to make the lives of IT architects easier and allow them to focus more strategically on the IT architecture”
5. “Establishing a business architecture team within an organization is about more than just introducing a new discipline. At the core, it is about enabling a new vision for strategy execution and creating a new capability within an organization to enact change.”
4. “Successful business architects are masters at simplifying, visualizing, and explaining complex concepts and showing new connections.”
3. “An organization should commit to all three components to help address the needs of society, aim to protect the environment, and focus on providing the best standard of living while remaining competitive in a world market. Organizations can measure their performance and value more holistically using the Triple Bottom Line, which includes not just financials but also social and environmental metrics to understand the full cost and benefits of doing business.”
2. “Business architecture is the golden thread that connects all the pieces across an organization’s entire business and technology environment and turns strategy into reality—making the seemingly impossible possible.”
1. “We have new mindsets to embrace and new muscles to build. Strategy execution—with transparency, collaboration, ownership, and accountability from end-to-end—is a critical capability that every single organization needs to develop. Those that do will build the agility and resilience to survive and thrive into the future.”