It is difficult to think strategically when you and your organization are buried in the everyday. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by users wanting new features, by the business disruption du jour, and by the CEO’s latest, critical request. How do you curtail the chaos? How do you make things better? How about considering a Sanity Sabbatical.
Last week, I had the privilege of leading a client’s IT Strategy Workshop. We took over a dozen senior IT personnel offsite (a shout-out to WeWork), for a 2-day break from their tactical, everyday tasks, and focused on the organization’s strategic vision. Where did they want to be in 6 to 12 months? Where did they want to be in 2 years? Being a trusted advisor, I was familiar with some of their most important issues. We brought in presenters to offer some alternative ways to look at some of their pain points. We brainstormed some issues that somehow eluded the group’s collective consciousness. The group left with a list of parking lot issues, for example: revisiting database and data model vision and strategy, exploring leveraging notification engines, and reevaluating testing strategies. Of course, there are several more that need to be prioritized and assigned. We also identified some POCs that need to be explored.
All in all, the group felt that it was a very useful exercise and should be repeated on a quarterly basis, at the least. In the coming weeks, my colleague John Crowell and I will be blogging about some of the workshop topics here. I hope that you’ll tune in.