Governance: Are you on the left or the right?

Dan Foody of Progress Software posted a followup to my last post entitled, “Less Governance is Good Governance.” Clearly, when it comes to SOA governance, Dan falls on the right. For those of you not in the US, the right, when used in the political sense, refers to the Republican party. The Republican party is typically the champion of less government. On the opposite side of the political fence, over on the left, are the Democrats. The Democratic party is typically associated with big government and more regulation. This post isn’t about US politics, however, it’s about SOA governance.

In line with his right-facing view, Dan’s final statement in his post says, “As much governance as is absolutely necessary, but no more.” Well, the United States has had successful times when Congress at times when each party had the majority, likewise for the presidency. So, I don’t think that it’s a uniform truth that less governance is good governance. Good governance is not defined by how quickly your team comes to consensus, it’s defined on whether or not you achieve your desired behavior. Sometimes, that may only require a few policies. Other times, it may require lots of policies, and lots of regulation. It is completely dependent on the current behavior of your organization, the behavior you need to have to be successful, and the degree to which everyone in the organization understands it and agrees with it, which is why communication is so important. Left? Right? Both can be successful, it’s all about where you are and where you need to go.

One Response to “Governance: Are you on the left or the right?”

  • Rob Eamon:

    I think you and Foody agree–the right amount of governance necessary to produce the desired outcomes. Foody just goes on to explicitly say “but no more than that.”

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