Why IT Groups Shouldn't Act Like Commies
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User Rank: Apprentice
11/18/2013 | 9:58:10 AM
Re: Communists don't have a monopoly on black markets
Agree with your comment but would like to emphasize: the opposite of totalitarian systems with central planning - like communist regimes - is not capitalism but the free market economy. Capitalism itself does not exclude monopolies.
Greg MacSweeney
Greg MacSweeney,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/18/2013 | 9:47:50 AM
Vendors love shadow IT
Not only do some business users like shadow IT, but vendors love it. In fact, we've come across a number of vendors who don't want to engage with the traditional IT orgazization at all. They go out of their way to avoid speaking with IT executives. They want to sell directly to the business user because IT slow things down.

Granted, many of the things that IT does to slowdown the process actually help the process (security, testing, and such), but some vendors and many users don't care. After all, once the sale is completed the vendor doesn't care if IT eventually has to manage the technology anyway. The vendor has already been paid.
User Rank: Apprentice
11/17/2013 | 11:18:57 AM
Re: Free Flow of Information
Agree wholeheartedly. Not only is the discussion free so is the leadership of IT. It used to be that the CIO and IT directors roles were closed and strictly held by IT professionals. Today, the growing trend for leadership is business oriented people who can run IT because they tend to discuss and lead freely. There is no longer a line drawn in the sand that separates the two worlds. The business and their budgets are tired of the totalitarian regime.
User Rank: Strategist
11/16/2013 | 5:13:51 PM
Re: Communists don't have a monopoly on black markets
@thomasClaburn: Well said, my thoughts exactly. "Free markets" don't automatically eliminate black and gray markets, or guarantee quality.

While I like the author's basic premise that the IT organization needs to be open, I find serious logical flaws in the basic comparisons of "communist" and free market, as well as the loose definitions that merge of communisim, socialism and marxism. 

Putting aside the fact that the author is playing fast and loose with economic and social philosophies, the basic position here is spot-on: The days of Top-down IT rule and the era of "the Department of No" are over, and we're moving toward a much more collaborative enterprise tech experience that involves the user and IT in ways that, ultimately, should be beneficial to the organization's bottom line. Shadow IT is here to stay, like it or not, "commie" or not, and today's IT organization will be better off joining this trend and making the most of it, than trying to beat it down.


Lorna Garey
Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
11/15/2013 | 5:15:53 PM
Re: Free Flow of Information
I would point out, however, that the main reason the Allies won WWII is that Stalin's "Commie" ruthlessness allowed him to break Hitler's Sixth Army (ok, oversimplified, but you get the point). When one has the stomach to be a dictator, one can get a lot done.

A more recent and less grisly example: The Olympic opening ceremonies in Beijing.

Run efficiently and smartly, strong centralization and the willingness to sacrifice the individual for the good of the whole is powerful force. Just saying.
Thomas Claburn
Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
11/15/2013 | 1:49:54 PM
Communists don't have a monopoly on black markets
"In communist regimes, the lack of both quality and options created thriving black markets."

In capitalist regimes, lack of quality online content created thriving black markets like Napster, The Pirate Bay, and other file sharing services. Hollywood likes to portray this as the work of scofflaws, but it's a consequence of business models that have been slow to adapt to digital distribution.

Likewise, IT groups need to recognize that inflexibility and failure to accommodate users diminishes the control they're trying to maintain.
User Rank: Author
11/15/2013 | 10:32:47 AM
Free Flow of Information
Fascinating comparison, Imre. The greatest threat to totalitarian regimes is the free flow of information. Tech experts once controlled or at least dominated the dialogue around IT, but consumerization has set that discussion free.

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