Making Organizations Awesome

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How can we fix California’s tech systems?

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I had the pleasure last week of having breakfast with Vivek Wadhwa, and besides being completely charming and a great breakfast companion he told me that he was about to go speak to the leaders of California’s state technology organizations.

If you follow TechCrunch or Vivek’s tweets you will know that he has written two very interesting posts subsequently, and that his posts have led to real offers from proven entrepreneurs to reduce costs and improve cycle times on major state technology projects.

What fascinates me is the extent to which culture factors will support or impede success when these small, entrepreneurial shops start to collaborate with the state to fix or overhaul these major systems.

What I mean is, it’s not enough just to have a good technical solution or well-written requirements document. Everyone reading this blog knows of many large, well-organized IT projects which either failed outright or significantly under-delivered. Every investor and technical guru I ask tells me that team dynamics are a critical success factor in technology projects. So my question is, what will these talented startups and committed civil servants do to make absolutely sure that the human factors are optimized on this effort along with cost, schedule, and functionality?

Expect to hear more from me on this. I’m a great fan of doing things better, especially when it involves interesting people and public systems.

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