Simplicity is an illusion

or to be more precise, Simplicity in larger successfull business today is an illusion.

I fully agree with Gene Hughson who wrote wrote "Simple responses to complex situations are both seductive and dangerous" in his blog.

But why is it like this today?

If your business is simple, in this global economy, then it's rather easy to for someone else to copy your business, and you will become a commodity. The only way you can compete is with price, unless you have a monopoly in your market.

So if you want to grow your business, and stay profitable, in some ways, it will be complex and hard to replicate. 

However, if your business model is to complex it will be very difficult to change. The more integrated your company is, the harder will it be to change, and survice changes in the market.

This conflict of simplicity vs complexity is relevant for both the business side and the IT side as well.  But what about management, is that also a complex issue? 

You can look at the governance model in your company. Is it centralised, decentralised or federated? Each of these models have their pros and cons, and which model to choose from is depending on the business you run.

 The problem gets even worse when you mix all three models to get some additional benefits. An example is to cetralize IT but still keep PnL responsibility in the business units, leading to shadow IT to solve business problems.

Another question is how you incentive the people in the organisation? Is it only money that you have as an incentive, and if so, is it individual performance they only thing that counts? How will you get people to work together and share knowledge with this model?

How do you drive innovation in you company?

If you want to change, you need to try different paths and experiment. You sometimes fails, but the question is if you are rewarded in spite of the failure, you lose a usual reward because your missed your marks or you get punished for failing. 

All this three questions are multifaceted, part of the company culture and impacts the ability to changes the organisation.

Therefore, creating a successful large business in not simple, and changing it is even more complex. 

The danger lies in suggesting simple solutions to complex problems.

Lust for new technology

The story about the Seven Deadly Sins of IT continues with New technology  

This is when Chris, the CEO, has lust for new technology and Joakim Lindbom is trying to persuade him to to be a little bit more realistic.

When you can't use what you own

When you buy digital content, how long time will it be available? 

Greger Wikstrand wrote about When cloud services disappear and with digital content the problem can be the same. You can't use what you own.

I got this mail from BBC last week and it’s a good description of the challenges with digital media.

Sadly, we have taken the difficult decision to close BBC Store on 1st November 2017. 

Although any programmes you own will still be available to watch until then, from now on we are no longer making programmes available to buy.

Our sincere thanks for being part of BBC Store. We do hope to make the programmes you could only get on BBC Store available elsewhere at some point in the future.

Best wishes

The BBC Store Team

You paid for a digital product, but often, nobody guaranties for how long time you can read it.  For daily newspapers, this may not be a big issue, but for magazines, books, music and film, this is a real issue.

If you buy a physical DVD, as long as you have a DVD-player, you can play the movie.  If you don’t want to have it as a collectable item, then you just rent it for a short period.

With digital media, the line between these two models is a little bit more blurred and customer expectations may not be what the media company delivers.

Critical agile path

An agile approach to filmmaking is in theory rather simple. In sprint 1, all scenes for chapter 1. In sprint 2, all scenes for chapter 2 etc.

In reality, we have a lot of constraints as availability of locations, cast and crew. Not to forget, it's not possible to edit a shot that haven’t been filmed yet.