Finding ‘the’ system

384207390How long have you been looking for that ‘perfect’ system?

You know….the project management ‘system’ that will be your savior.

Or the governance process that will ensure that your IT group is running ‘right’.

Or that Social Media approach that will make your marketing efforts ‘perfect’.

Or…perhaps that perfect system that will make you money in the stock market.

The thing with finding ‘the’ system is that there’s never a system that’s right for everyone.  In fact, there’s never a ‘perfect’ system…there’s only systems.

As a project manager,  you are taught that the Project Management Institute’s body of knowledge is “the” way to manage projects…until you are taught that Agile is the way to go…and then you learn that some other form of managing projects is  the ‘best’ approach.

As an IT leader, you’ve been groomed to think ITIL will solve your troubles…until you realize it won’t.   You bring in consultants to implement the latest and greatest approaches and are promised they are the answers to your prayers.  But…you soon realize you’ve just spent money on yet another buzzword…sure they buzzword helps, but it isn’t “the” answer.

As a marketer, you were giddy when you realized how powerful social media was for ‘building your brand’, so you threw money at it.  You hired ‘ninjas’ to run your campaigns.  Then…realized that the perfect ‘system’ they promised you wasn’t working.

As an investor, you  spend years looking for that ‘holy grail’.  Maybe you spend hundreds, thousands or tens of thousands of dollars for systems, newsletters and software…to no avail. Nothing is working ‘perfectly’.

Welcome to the real world. There is no perfect.  There’s only approaches that work for some and don’t work for others.

Rather than spend money / time searching for ‘the’ system, find what works for you.

Image Credit: Perfect by -= Bruce Berrien =- on flickr

2 responses to “Finding ‘the’ system”

  1. Scot Herrick Avatar

    The other deal with systems is that adapting one usually means many (significant) changes need making either in the organization or the company culture. And the systems last only as long as the management stays the same.

    I worked in a company that advocated ITIL, set up an organization to support the different disciplines, and was starting to get some really good results. Then a new mucky-muck came on board and all that gone thrown out the window, including about 70 jobs — people who moved into the role and got training, not originally new hires.

    The systems don’t work because they never get implemented correctly — and the management turnover kills the momentum. It really requires great discipline and support to adapt to a system and I haven’t seen many management teams ready to take that on.

    Past that, very correct — every company has to create their own best practice within a system. Just because something is supposed to be universal doesn’t mean you can’t adopt it to your company and circumstance. But most companies never get to this point; the buzzwords change and out goes the progress.

    1. Eric D. Brown Avatar

      Hey Scot –

      Excellent comment and insight.

      Systems don’t work for a lot of reasons but implementation and follow through are key as you say. Thanks for stopping by!