How to start a productive conversation on IT/Business Alignment


Creating metrics that reflect business value can be challenging, especially if the business is not sure what should matter. We present guidelines for how to use the Technology Lifecycle inflection points to create a starting point for a meaningful conversation.



“You should more closely align IT with the business needs”.

This phrase has echoed through organizations for at least the last two decades.  While some organizations have mastered this alignment, many still struggle with what it means and how to execute. You may have been told to “Engage and Talk with your peers in the business” to get a better understanding of their needs and strategies.   How many of us have had those meeting requests dodged because our business partners were not sure what they wanted either?  How awkward is that hallway discussion, or how quiet does the meeting room get when you declare that you want to support the business better, so could they please “tell you what they need”?   Instead of moving the discussion forward, this question can stall progress when the business is not yet ready.  It is always a more productive conversation when you can go to your peers in the business with a starting proposal and then have them edit/update it.

But how are you supposed to know how to build that initial proposal without looking crazy or out of touch with the business as they see it?

Shot of two colleagues shaking hands during a meeting at work



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