I have been in graduate school for over half a year now. There are the challenges of keeping up with the reading, the workload, and the balancing of priorities in private life. This is all to be expected. What I have found is how graduate school has become my own version of Enterprise Architecture. I found my current state needing improvement. I then identified the desired state and what it would take to get there. Now that I am in the graduate program I find myself in a gap between the once current state and the desired state of completing my degree.
At the completion of this course, I will have four units of graduate work completed. It has become apparent to me, as an individual and for a system, is that nothing can be done in isolation. The success of any endeavor, or shall we say enterprise, will require effective communication. Through the exploration of Enterprise Architecture, I have seen how communication is the process through which every task and artifact gets completed. This is particularly the case in the Preliminary Stage, where the planning of the EA is conducted. A business can not have individuals or even groups working in isolation. Fear of change can force groups to isolate themselves, and that is just human nature. However, effective leadership and business practices can help all stakeholders within the organization to collaborate as part of the system. To me, where I currently stand I see the need for an ongoing system of communication and feedback to be the growth and vitality of any enterprise, even graduate school.
I know where I am in my educational goals. I am not foolish to believe that I have mastered any of the subjects from my course work. In fact, I am stuck between where I am and where I wish to be. I am in what EA would identify as ‘The Gap.’ I know enough to have a grasp, to be able to share my understanding and ask for guidance when I don’t comprehend a concept. In EDL 680 Introduction to Enterprise Architecture, for example, I am well aware of the vast complexity that is EA. At the same time, I can understand its vital importance to any organization. The Gap is that place where the Enterprise had identified where they want to be and understand the work that needs to be done to reach the desired state. The journey and the process from current state to the desired state creates a massive plan that requires communication at all levels of the Enterprise.
There can be a plan. In my life, the thought and energy that went to deciding to attend graduate school took several weeks. I needed to get the input and feedback from all stakeholder, my family. It is the same with EA, it is the process and the planning to moving from where the organization is to where it wants to be. EA is the growth and the change. Many organization become resistant to change. Some would argue that the very nature of teaching is resistant to change. However, the goal of instruction is to see a change in student outcomes. This resistance is due to a lack of communication. Leadership and learning both require that the desired state be clearly communicated. To be clear leadership is not a single voice, nor is learning. The role of the leader is to take the communications of the organization and be their champion. My desired state would be always to remember that a boss has a single voice, while a leader is the voice of many.
As another class comes to a close, I reflect on my learning and growth in leadership. Like in the EA example, I know where I am and where I want to be. I recognize the gap between the two states. The simple tool to cross this barrier, for me, is the 3Cs. The most successful tool I can bring to an organization, business, or a district will be communication, communication, and communication.