“IT value comes from synergy (i.e. value is delivered when the value of the systems ecosystem is greater than the value of the individual parts of that ecosystem or 1 + 1 = 3). Yet our organizations are not very good at synergistic thinking. Rather we more typically break things down into manageable chunks, handing these chunks to individuals to manage then holding them to account for the effective delivery of the chunk. This works well for many things but is potentially disastrous when effective synergy is the ultimate driver of value, as is the case with technology. The chunk that is the project got done but it didn’t contribute to a synergistic whole and may have even detracted from it. We see this expressed in projects when the project succeeded but the business benefits were not achieved. There is a medical saying that seems relevant for this – the operation was a success, but the patient died.

We are always going to need to chunk things down to be able to arrive at initiatives that are executable. However, perhaps we need to change the emphasis of our thinking so that our first priority is creating the synergistic whole and our second priority is about understanding the value of the individual project.” – Owen McCall, CIO NZ. excerpted, click here to read the article “Persistent Problems & Conventional Thinking” in its entirety.

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