I have been reading Andy Winskill’s blog on his suggested Elevator pitch for Enterprise Architecture – ‘Enterprise Architecture is about the identification and realisation of Competitive Advantage‘.

I think this is an excellent pitch that has the benefit of being concise and focused on the business language  of senior executives.

My own elevator pitch is ‘Enterprise Architecture is the bridge between strategy and execution‘.

To expand on this pitch, I usually point people towards the excellent ‘Enterprise Architecture as Strategy‘ book by Jeanne W Ross et al.

I also sometimes describe EA as a realisation of the System 4 (focusing on strategy/future/intelligence) in Stafford Beer’s Viable System Model.  Or as a combination of System 4 and System 3 (focusing on audit/control/governance).  This doesn’t work so well as an elevator pitch unfortunately as most people are not familiar with Stafford Beer’s work and will just give you a blank pitying look…

Nick Malik from Inside Architecture says:
Enterprise Architecture is not about “building solutions right”

Enterprise Architecture is about “building the right solutions”

In the ideal world the EA team is a peer to the business areas and the IT department. It should report to the strategy & planning team or the CIO.
Most EA teams are seen as part of IT, and the business managers think that they are just there as jumped up technical design authorities.

I use a military analogy to communicate about EA. The EA team is the equivalent of the intelligence and planning teams. The politicians and generals are the bsiness users and business managers who need the intelligence group to provide intel, make decisions and plan the future target vision and guide the execution by the troops on the ground which are like the delivery project teams.
Building the solutions right is like using the best equipment and the best tactics.
Building the right solutions is like having the right strategy and being in the right place with the right equipment in order to actually win the war and beat the enemy.

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