Mark Schwartz, a leader in the field of Agile and DevOps practices and business intelligence, brings us The Art of Business Value in 2016. Schwartz pulls lessons from his professional expertise in the field of information technology to explore the concept of business value and how our understanding of it is a key element to creating a thriving organization.
Author, researcher, and founder of IT Revolution, Gene Kim calls The Art of Business Value
Irreverent and whimsical, [Schwartz] challenges conventional thinking and questions many of the deeply held beliefs of the Agile community. It forces us to examine carefully the concepts and definitions we thought we understood, which, in the end, allows us to define more precisely what business value is—so that we can create more of it.
Schwartz knows now to make you question things you thought you knew, and then poke some good-natured fun at the results of where IT and the business meet:
We know we are creating features, but are we creating business value? Sure we are: the product owner says so, and she’s from the business. Are you frustrated trying to explain to her why spending time to reduce technical debt is more important than adding the mimsy borogoves feature to the Jabberwock, which Marketing says will have an ROI of 321.25 percent? “But refactoring the FixAllYourProblems class to use the Classy Recursion pattern is worth 7.2 Value Points!” I don’t have exact stats for you on how many of us have tried unsuccessfully to have this business value conversation, but it’s a lot. Anyway, 97.5 percent of readers believe that statistics in books are mostly made up. …
And after he’s poked and prodded at the problem you never knew you had, he makes the case for why it’s solvable:
So this book is a bit of a meditation on business value and why it matters to us. Or maybe it is more of a detective story. Business value is out there somewhere, even as our deployments become vanishingly small, and we’re going to track it down. We’ll interrogate the usual suspects, round up some experts, recruit some informants, test out some theories, and, in the end, track it down. Then we’ll get it to work for us, if the government says it’s authorized to work.
The Art of Business Value goes on sale April 1, 2016, at all major retailers. Download an excerpt of the first two chapters, “The Problem” and “The Meaning.”