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Interest is better than knowledge

Sogeti Labs
August 30, 2013

One thing that has bothered me for decades is the continuous chat after business knowledge. –        We are searching for a “role” with extensive business knowledge of.. –        We are looking for consultants with business knowledge of.. What I have realised after all these years is that business knowledge is a rather narrow view. Of course explicit business knowledge is required around operational business, but as soon as you leave that explicit business or start to look into business development, it rather harnesses than support the initiative. What I have realised should be the new key imperative is business interest. I think that the lack of business interest is the reason for the never ending issue of gap between business and IT. For the new world of Business Technology we need more people that love to dive into businesses, to understand how they work and to find out what can be done to make them better. The organisations that can gather and develop the people of business interest will be the winners in the future.  That’s my true belief. People of Business Interest, PBI !! How come that we are lacking the PBI’s? I have been thinking of this for some years as I feel to be one of the few PBI’s around.

A very proud production manager shows his superior vibrating conveyor belts for potato chips
There is of course some kind of basic capability at the bottom of each individual, but I think we can breed business interest. The problem today when we look at the education within and around IT, is that the matter of business is avoided in favor of modeling, programming, development methodologies and project management, etc. This avoidance of breeding business interest continues when the guys leave education and starts working. Have you ever heard of any certification in the area of business?  The educations and most companies sadly just maintain the IT isolation. How did I become a PBI? I think one reason is the early days of my consultancy career when I was travelling around in Sweden installing systems. Wherever I came I met proud business people that burned for their business and production apparatus. They almost dragged me out in the factories to show me all the things they thought was fantastic.  Vibrating conveyor belts for potato chips, Europe’s largest spice mixing machine, casting of the world’s largest paper machine cylinders, automatic warehouse for sewing machine manufacturing. I can make a long list, and I’m sure that all these visits in reality have shaped me. To breed business interest among IT people and architects is key success factor. Just do it! It is a pre-requisite for Business Technology. Business is fun!

About the author

SogetiLabs gathers distinguished technology leaders from around the Sogeti world. It is an initiative explaining not how IT works, but what IT means for business.


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