Finding the balance between governance and agility

Whether you run a small or large enterprise, trying to find the proper level of governance can be a bit despairing. In this context governance, is referring to the level of decision management needed to keep the enterprise running as close to optimal as possible.

Unlike the intent, many people see governance as a burden on the way business is ran. A not necessary step.

I can only speak for myself in that most of the governance we do is needed in order to focus the enterprise on being ran safely and with minimal problems. I would argue that without some level of control our company would fall into chaos. Our systems would not work well together, we would spend more money doing rework and people would be far less productive.

In a word, we would "fail".

The challenge is finding that sweet spot between the minimum necessary to ensure you make the best decisions; without adding so much that you bring the system to a grinding halt.

Do you draw out a master plan and compare every decision against it? If you lack the time (or people) for the master blueprint, do instead focus on key items and hope for the best? Perhaps you use outside specialists and industry experts to influence where you go?

What if you are the expert that others look to for guidance?

These are all part of the larger balancing act of managing the architectural constructs of enterprise IT. You need to put in place the right talent, decide on the master plan (and adjust it often) and hold everyone accountable to it. Measure and identify your successes while adjusting for your failures. Use specialists whether inside or outside your company; recognize talent regardless of where it is.

Be flexible, be innovative and above all put eyes on it. It is only with those eyes that you will find you are making the best decisions on how you run your enterprise.