What X Factor Do You Bring As A Business Architect

“Business plans are the tool existing companies use for execution. They are the wrong tool to search for a business model.”

– Steve Blank

The personalities of a business architect

Following on from my last blog “You do what? You are a Business Architect, What is that? Part 1”  I eased into the great world of business architecture, what we do at a high level and where we operate!

Now, I’m going to tell you about the 4 different personalities a Business Architect can have. I will then tell you about my personality, and how I am a mixture personalities.

To smash these out quickly, the 4 personalities are;

  1. The Rock Star Consultant
  2. The Information Hunter
  3. The Savvy Orchestrator
  4. The Story Teller

Bonus: The Hybrid

Remember Business Architecture is the bridge between strategy and execution

 The Rock Star Consultant:

“Listen, listen, listen, then start playing the melody. Then…make the music play” – Holger Ridinger

  • develop a deep understanding of the facets of the business opportunity
  • create a holistic view
  • facilitate group discussions
  • assess, revise and repeat

Rock Star Consultants thrive at:

  • facilitating, listening, and “reading between the lines”
  • applying strong influential leadership skills to get results
  • engaging people one on one
  • strategic thinking
  • “thinking on their feet”
  • “diamond cutting” (exhibiting tenacity)

The Information Hunter

“The sales part is easy. It’s the follow-through that’s tough. It takes commitment and collaboration
from a number of business and IT parties to create something that sticks to more than a bookshelf”– Forrester
  • locate raw data from “both people and paper”
  • transform the raw data to information
  • analyse the meaning of this information to identify trends and opportunities / risks

Information Hunters thrive at:

  • analysing data efficiently
  • being consultative, i.e. fearlessly presenting unbiased (even controversial) summaries of findings and conclusions to business decision-makers and key stakeholders
  • increasing transparency into business and IT
  • working with incomplete data, when necessary, to form defensible and logical hypotheses

Savvy Orchestrator’s:

“Successful Business Architects are masters of reading the white space”

– Forrester

  • facilitate structured discussions
  • bring technology insights to the table
  • connect the “dots”

Savvy Orchestrator’s  thrive at:

  • providing structure to unstructured problems
  • facilitation and establishing matrixed relationships
  • clarifying and aligning multiple viewpoints
  • identifying technological approaches to solve business problems
  • “brokering conversations”

Story Tellers:

“Successful business architects create the visibility they need regardless of where they report”

– Forrester

  • find the unique threads of the story
  • weave them together
  • create a compelling and comprehensive narrative
  • produce a platform for discussing the alternatives for evolving the company’s capabilities

Story Tellers thrive at:

  • facilitating and listening
  • storyboarding
  • unveiling the whole picture
  • “scaling”
  • recognizing patterns
  • Not only tell their stories – they engage on one-on-one and listen to the stories of others

Mark Norman, The Hybrid = The Eclectic Business Architect

Most people have crossing skill sets – I combine 2 of the above personalises

  • The Rock Star Consultant
  • The Savvy Orchestrator

Creative and eclectic thought are the basis for most model solutions, taking into account business issues, external environmental influences, problems, opportunities to inform strategic influencers on where best resource should be spent for MAXIMUM business benefit and customer satisfaction.

My value add is in how I apply Start-Up methodology to enterprises. Even the largest of companies with alot of historical momentum can have improved for bottom line performance without the need for drastic FTE reduction / restructures (depending on enterprise maturity of course). Enabling any enterprise to know what programmes / projects are moving them closer to their vision, or what programmes / projects are needed to quickly pivot the company into a trending/new revenue stream is paramount to my value proposition.

Like all Architects, We have our tool box of goodies. Full of wonderful models and tips and tricks for quick success / small investment or scalable and repeatable success / High investment – The difference with mine, isn’t the shininess from being new. No, Its the lean and agile artefacts that enable best practice based off the enterprises revenue models / customers and value propositions.

I said this the other day,

“Success is nothing without a plan. A plan is nothing without the architecture. Architecture is nothing without investment”

– Mark Norman



Special Thanks To;

Aaron Schnore

Holger Ridinger

For their early insight into the personalities in the Business Architecture domain. Noting that one personality type will not be able to carry an entire Business Architect group and that a group of various strengths is needed. 

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