Can Visual Enterprise Architecture be done by anyone?

vrijdag 1 mei 2015 | Likes: 0 | Comments: 0

Mark Paauwe

VP Product Development

Dragon1 Inc

Hi Everyone,

Yesterday I got the following question via Twitter from a follower: "Can Visual Enterprise Architecture be done by anyone, or are some skills required, like graphics, which hardly any architect has?"

This question is definitely coming from someone who wants to know what it really takes to become a successful Visual Enterprise Architect.

To start off with the straightforward answer: Yes, Visual Enterprise Architecture based on Dragon1 can be done by anyone. You DO NOT need any graphics skills. you do not need to be a gifted cartoonist to be a successful visual enterprise architect. Although a little feeling with drawing the core of a problem or solution really helps.

What you do need is to be curious. You must be intrigued by how to design an integral solution, using new and old concepts, that fulfills a lot of different requirements, some of which might even be contradictory. And next, you must like it to communicate the solution and supervise its realization.

In a nutshell doing visual enterprise architecture comes down to identifying the larger but specialized business & IT concepts that make up the architecture of the enterprise and with that bridge the gap between strategy and business change in an organization.

That's all!... But that obviously requires some knowledge on business and IT concepts (techniques, standards, trends, etc...) in general. For instance, you have to know about cross-selling but also to know about cloud computing in order to be able to come up with a digital architectural (total concept) solution for a brick-and-mortar sales issue.

So the catch in being a successful visual enterprise architect lies in how well you know the possible and correct larger business & IT concepts for a certain strategy or type of enterprise. And for that some of us need a bit of experience, creativity and experts or specialist in the field (to which work can be delegated). And what I often try to do is to copy concepts from other sciences like Nature to the field of Enterprise Architecture, for that extra touch and personal fingerprint in the architectural solution.

If you want to know more about bridging the gap between strategy and business change with the correct architecture, you might take a look at the Dragon1 Enterprise Architecture & Performance Framework. That will explain a lot more about doing Visual Enterprise Architecture.


Thank you for reading my blog and don't forget to check it out again soon!

Mark Paauwe


Some links to Enterprise Architecture resources on Visualizing Architecture are:

  1. Enterprise Performance Framework
  2. Enterprise Performance Visualization