Business Politics Management?

  • May 23, 2011
  • Scott

Jacob Ukelson has a great post on Business Politics Management vs. Business Process Management-

I suggest that we should have a separate branch of BPM that is Business Politics Management – it is the cousin of regular BPM, but for knowledge worker tasks. These tasks are very heavily dependent on collaboration, meetings, discussions, negotiation – and yes politics (in the sense that all interactions between humans involves politics). I think using the word “politics” would cause enough of an uproar that we could actually start understanding how the two BPMs actually are different.


But realistically that is a job more suited to Business Politics Management, since it requires the kind of knowledge work that involves collaboration, meetings, discussion and negotiations – and yes, politics.

He has a great point – that one of the first processes one should set up is the meta-process for evaluating process opportunities and chartering a project, if you will.  There’s just one problem: software doesn’t solve politics.  And I’m taking the benign definition – software doesn’t help you get people to agree on the right answer, where that answer is subjective or based on human judgment and consensus.

I’ve actually used a process to model the pipeline (funnel) of demand and the actual evaluation process. But the real roadblocks are not in software – they’re in people’s heads.  And those people have to be confronted in person or on conference calls and their objections dealt with.  They won’t always write them down for you to rebut.  The point is, it takes real convincing and persuasion.  Good news folks: these are things that PEOPLE are really good at, and we won’t easily be displaced.

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