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Dealing with Disparate Goals

By Grant Fritchey,

I’m reading some more history. In this case I’ve been reading about the Korean conflict back in the 1950s. One of the more fascinating aspects of the history is the disparity of the goals between President Truman along with the UN, and the general in charge, MacArthur. Not only were the goals different, but the communication between them was fairly horrible. Instead of realizing that each side had different communication styles and trying to cater the message to the recipient they both thought they could just dictate what they wanted and it would happen.

You see the same thing all the time in IT. Organizations and individuals don’t, or can’t, agree on the goals. They then proceed to talk past one another. IT is not easy, but communication is brutally difficult under the best of circumstances. Now put a hard deadline in, or shift the requirements, or have the business environment change, or any of the other myriad issues that comes up. Then bad communication becomes horrible communication becomes missed opportunities, lost business and IT failures.

It’s best to get the business and the IT department communicating well and often. Make sure you understand the goals and that your business or your IT organization agrees on those goals. The lesson of history is very clear. Everyone is working together or there will be problems.

 
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