Find the essence in 'the Enterprise Wig' and start performing

Published on Thursday, December 24th 2020


Most professionals trying to improve digital transformation performance in their organisation are confronted with a terminology that seems to be made for secrecy. The language and sentences used are foggy and often multi-interpretable.

Actually, I feel sorry for all the rookies starting their career in IT. They are recent graduates, and enthusiastically want to make the world a better place. In the meanwhile they hear things like:

“We use Enterprise Design to understand who we are." “Listen, a process could have a product as an outcome but can have other purposes as well.” “Model Driven and Rapid Application development are both low code and rapid so do not mind the Rapid in RAD.”

We wish them luck. At Cycle to Accelerate we call this phenomenon ‘The Enterprise Wig’. A heavy wig full of practices and buzzing terminology we need to understand and filter before we can find the essence underneath, and start performing. It still grows while losing a few curls here and there over the years.


The Enterprise Wig got bigger and bigger over time

In the first half of the 18th century, high and curly wigs were worn by the upper class. That still happens in English courtrooms, where the wig stands (or stood) for wisdom.

When I started in IT twenty years ago, I encountered the enterprise wig with curls of various practices including Waterfall, DSDM, Extreme Programming, CMMI, UML, Functional Design. Examples of the wig’s lost curls we didn't include in the wig above because, like most things, the wig is also subject to fashion, as you can imagine. Even without the lost curls it still managed to get bigger and heavier in recent years. But what is really important?

How to obtain essential knowledge from the Enterprise Wig

How can you find the essence to achieve the best performance?

You can only find it by:

Pragmatism - Don’t get stuck in theoretical discussions. Live what you have learned in theory. By doing it you gain experience By experiencing it you know what works and what doesn't work for your organisation. What works well for one company won’t work for another.

Experience - That is your own finding of truth. It's like walking: you only learn by doing it. A sushi chef has to work in the kitchen for ten years before he can call himself a sushi chef.

Simply put, practice builds wisdom. Just like you as a person take on a journey in life, you do the same in IT. If all goes well, you gain wisdom and tacit knowledge along the way. Traditional craftsmen approach problems mainly from their experience.

It’s the kind of knowledge that can't be categorised precisely in a textbook or in regulations because every situation is unique in its nature.

Just as an experienced fisherman knows where to sail that morning to cast his nets, an experienced IT professional knows which part of the wig should be used and which parts should be ignored for the moment.

At Cycle to Accelerate we guide professionals and organisations to find the essence in the wig faster and as a map we utilise on our digital transformation performance pattern.

You could start with refining your opinion on the current performance of your organisation by completing our personal performance questionnaire using the following link: