back to article Kill something, then hire cleaners to mop up the blood if you want to build a digital business

Kill something, find a leader, stop thinking about apps and start thinking about products, get seriously good at agile development and realise there is no finish line. Those are just some of the things organisations aspiring to become digital businesses need to achieve if they're to succeed according to Gartner's veep and …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ...your CIO's way out is early retirement

    There's a lot of truth to that. Nearing retirement age myself, the thought of the death march being proposed (and likely necessary) to reorient a legacy organization to service-oriented IT is hardly appealing. There are going to be a lot of bodies left by the side of the road, the trip will take years, and everyone and everything is going to oppose you until you deliver - years from now. That's a young man's game, and I'm happy to step aside for those brave enough to undertake the journey. But I fear for the fearless, as the appetite for risk and the attention span of management to see this through to the end will be rare.

    1. David Roberts Silver badge
      Windows

      By the time you get there

      DevOps will have been discarded for something more fashionable.

      So your systems will be legacy.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Unicorn Fantasy Land!

    What a bunch of crap. Fire your CIO, retrain your staff provided they don't leave and good luck finding skilled replacements. Play a heavy fine to exit from your existing outsourced without being able to find a competent replacement. Good luck getting funding when the #1 goal is to reduce costs. Change the governance model while getting buy in from the business units and auditors.

    Oh and it should take 30-40 years when the average CIO tenure is 3.5 years.

    The vendors are rarely the problem. The process and people are. How does CD increase revenue while reducing costs? Cloud vendors are still vendors. Hardware is still hardware that has software run it. Customization has been done because shelfware didn't fill business needs.

    1. Naselus

      Re: Unicorn Fantasy Land!

      Don't forget 'it's vital to kill something just to prove no app is safe'. Had a good laugh over that particular idiot maneuver. How are your users going to react when you quietly shift from Photoshop to MS Paint just to prove 'no app is safe'? Never mind the fact that your whole industry uses that one piece of software and all your clients are expecting stuff delivered in it's proprietary format; I need to prove that no app is safe even if it means killing the whole business in the process!

      1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

        In other news,

        The word is that Microsoft is discontinuing Paint...

        1. DavCrav Silver badge

          Re: In other news,

          "it's vital to kill something just to prove no app is safe"

          "The word is that Microsoft is discontinuing Paint..."

          I see Microsoft is taking this advice.

  3. Detective Emil
    Mushroom

    Oi!

    Look what you've done to my buzzword detector.

  4. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Where be the Killer Blow Dealers? Be They Circling in Space?

    Is it illegal, and would one be certainly found guilty of actively conspiring to defraud and mislead both minor and major supporters and stakeholders, and be classed as something of a master criminal enterprise, to run a business which was in debt, and consistently incurring increasing debt, and whose working costs greatly exceeded income to generate a deficit for production of further massive losses?

    If a current state has existing governance mechanisms which are bad for digital business ….. is the barrier to becoming digital, existing governance mechanisms with criminal master enterprises?

    Future digital states surely will not host such corrupt and criminal barriers, and it is monumentally stupid to imagine that they either could or they would choose such a retrograde path into the future.

    Is your exclusive national executive and international administration system running an analogue master criminal enterprise scam and bankrupting business venture, and be it well worthy of Killer Blow Dealers immediate undivided attention?

    Fixing the Bigger Picture with AI Beta will easily generate a wholly New Orderly World Order... and in an Almighty Flash Crash Bash too if you are not careful nor fully Properly Prepared with Positive Planning to Prevent Piss Poor Performance Permitting Prime Prize Penetration and Perfect Private Protocolled Pursuit of Public Parametered Projects and Pirate ProgramMING Presentations alike.

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Where be the Killer Blow Dealers? Be They Circling in Space?

      Regarding the first paragraph question there ......

      Is it illegal, and would one be certainly found guilty of actively conspiring to defraud and mislead both minor and major supporters and stakeholders, and be classed as something of a master criminal enterprise, to run a business which was in debt, and consistently incurring increasing debt, and whose working costs greatly exceeded income to generate a deficit for production of further massive losses?

      ........ is one perfectly within ones rights and duty bound in a free and fair society to refuse to pay into such as is considered and proven to be a criminal joint venturing conspiracy fleecing all manner of beings and businesses?

      Is it the duty of law and order and military forces and sources to destroy such an enemy?

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Re: Cuckolds were Us and/or are Y'all too

        And whereas you may thinking I'm going slightly mad is not the madness in you accepting as normal and suitable such a perverse arrangement?

        Are you capable of deep analytical thought or are you simply programmed to believe most everything you are told was/is true and necessary for the past and its past masters to try and lead the future .... a space in times in which they know absolutely nothing and bear no authority?

        And I will always counter impertinent questions casting any kind of doubt on my own sanity with this Daliesque repost ..... The only difference between a mad man and me is that I am not mad.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I literally have no idea what any of this means.

    And yet can tell you with certainty, this is why you'll spend millions of dollars and still get hacked.

    1. m0rt

      I loved your comment so much I want to sleep with it.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Playing Gartner Bullshit Buzzword Bingo

    I just need 'Synergy' for a full house....

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The underlying issue is

    That the transformation cannot be simple "an IT problem". Many businesses resist IT led change as it changes (improves) the way they work but is seen as unnecessary disruption by IT.

    You can have your agile/devops/everything as a service buzzwords but none of it is any use if the business insists the corporation will shut down if you don't keep that last unupgradable 2003 application going, or the industry led functionality changes are not "how my team works".

    As ever, not addressing the right problem, but ensuring you have technology to blame...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The underlying issue is

      You know where I work?

  8. Scroticus Canis
    Alert

    Mr Kyte should go fly himself

    Explains why Gartner is ... well, Gartner.

    Sounds very similar to the '90s when RAD was the merde-du-jour.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Mr Kyte should go fly himself

      I had actually forgotten about RAD. Happy days.

  9. Lotaresco Silver badge
    Flame

    More oblocks

    So errrm the current business is using "apps", eh?

    But it's not "digital"?

    The last time that I used an analogue computer it was a cold war legacy system, mostly used for teaching just to prove that everything doesn't need to be digital. That was more decades ago than I like to think about. Even if the business to be "transformed"[1] is running on Systimes, PDP-11s, CDC Cybers, NASCOMS, PETs and BBC Bs it is still "digital". The smell of Gartner merda di bue is strong with this "report". At least the good news this time is that I didn't have to pay them hundreds of pounds and sign an NDA just to come to the conclusion that it wasn't worth reading.

    [1] Transformed always seems to mean transformed as in transformed from functioning to broken. if you want to see what "transformation" does, look at the history of ICI. Transformed from an industry giant to nothing by John Harvey-Jones. The best day's work done by Morgan Cars was telling him to sling his hook. Everything he touched is dead, Morgan continues to thrive.

    1. Down not across Silver badge

      Re: More oblocks

      So errrm the current business is using "apps", eh?

      But it's not "digital"?

      And there I was thinking it was just me, that calling things "digital" was annoying the crap out of.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So this is leadership

    “The first people to hire when doing digital businesses is cleaners,” Kyte said, “because there will be blood on the floor and the ceiling. If you do it nicely, it will fail. The sword of leadership and grit is needed.”

    If you were leading an army this way you'd soon find yourself shot by your own troops, if they could find you.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So this is leadership

      You, sir or madam, are my Hero of the Hour! Back in the day, we called it "fragging." And I can't tell you how many Supervisors/Managers/C-cretins I've imagined doing that to.

      Oh, did I say that out loud? "Nothing to see here, Citizen. Move along."

  11. IglooDude
    Coat

    In this day and age, it is good to kill an app from time to time pour encourager les autres.

    (Yeah, mine's the one with the copy of Candide in the pocket)

  12. WoobieVonFruitbat

    Snake Oil

    More snake oil from the company that pioneered its use in the fleecing of out-of-their-depth IT management.

    If you listen to these clowns you deserve everything you get.

  13. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Unhappy

    TL;DR Re-train in house staff and change is a process, not an event.

    Hard to believe intelligent people don't know this already, but they probably don't feel it in their bones.

    Now try and get the PHB's to actually spend money doing them.

    And the biggest piece of BS.

    "IT change drives business change."

    Wrong. You want to change your business. You need to change IT to do that.

    But that requires senior management to understand their business well enough to realize they need to change in the first place.

  14. Down not across Silver badge

    Decades of investment

    Those investments were mostly in silos and meant that no organisation can honestly say it consciously designed the state it's in today. Kyte describes that state as “a great stinking dunghill of complexity” that inhibits efforts to increase the pace of change.

    And guess what Mr Kyte, quite whilst it may not be suitable for the latest agile fad, more often than not it actually just plain old works. When it breaks, there is good change you know because there is good change control in place.

    Not to mention that not all applications are suitable for agile development. Newsflash, not every application is some festering pile of java on a website.

    That is not to say that there isn't room for improvement. Of course there is, but agile may not be the silver bullet.

  15. disgruntled yank Silver badge

    wow

    '"“The first people to hire when doing digital businesses is cleaners,” Kyte said, “because there will be blood on the floor and the ceiling. If you do it nicely, it will fail. The sword of leadership and grit is needed.”'

    It sounds as if the Squeegee of Prudence and Patience might come in handy as well, and maybe the Bucket of Lysol.

    'Never customise software again, stop building silos and push back against those who say they're necessary.'

    Never customize software again? Because vanilla SAP/Peoplesoft/Dynamics Just Works?

  16. TheElder

    Very bad plan.

    Xerox tried the services concept many years ago. In 1998 they almost died. They were 60 days away from closure.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lest we forget

    Lets not forget that Gartner are the guys who brought us all that Bi-Modal BS!!

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