I’ve been fortunate to be in a position as a trusted advisor assess individuals during performance reviews as well as to hiring managers internal and external to Microsoft looking for strong architect candidates. For the most part, a lot of my judgment is based on my assertion of a candidates hard and soft architect skills. Hard skills such as architecture design skills and domain architecture knowledge. Soft skills like leadership/emotional intelligence and professionalism expertise. This has been relatively successful but I’ve observed very qualified architects unfortunately limit themselves due to some negative behaviors and I’ve observed others rise unbelievably quickly due some very positive behaviors.
I thought I’d share some of these observed behaviors to help you in your efforts to find successful Architects to hire or partner with.
Your blog is great. Can you help app archs to take next step towards enterprise architecture.
Some good references or starting point would be great.
For example : Is Zachman framework a must learn ? If not what are other desirable and must reads?
I get this question a lot. The truth is that there is no definitive curriculum for becoming an Enterprise Architect. Every year I hear of rumblings from Universities that are forming Masters programs and the like for one to get a degree in Enterprise Architecture. I’ve never seen the results so I can’t comment. I also know of several certifications to gain an accreditation on Enterprise Architecture. I’ve never gone through a certification course nor do I have any Enterprise Architecture certifications under my belt. So, unfortunately, once again I can’t comment on them either.
I can say that Enterprise Architecture is an incredibly young discipline. I find gaps in every one of the popular Enterprise Architecture Frameworks and Methodologies out there. Btw, many of the gaps are sometimes due to the framework themselves, however, some of the gaps are caused in a lack of rigor and consistency of ‘the enterprise’ which the EA Framework is applied. My favorite example to illustrate this gap is Business Architecture. How many different flavors of Business Architecture are out there? Tons. Maybe its because ‘business’ is conducted differently across all enterprises? You think? :)
Sorry that I don’t think this was the answer you were looking for. I’ll try to be more helpful. In my limited experience, I’m a fan of Solution Architecture backgrounds. I mean Solution Architecture as in the Microsoft Solutions Framework role description. That is a fundamental skill set in my opinion. To make the transition to Enterprise Architect, one must have the skills to model all lines of businesses in an enterprise, be able to derive information models and system models to support them, and be a leader to make the necessary changes to realize the architectural vision.
This a fantastic article and certainly one that will "stand the test of time", in terms of insights shared. I continue to strive and to grow within the EA discipline and your thoughts on positive/negative behaviors are things I will take to heart and carry with me going forward and make part of my "continual" self improvement plans.
Back here again... using the wisdom here as a guide, as a compass to avoid certain pitfalls, and yet embrace new opportunities to grow. I've said it before...this is pure gold!