More on the other BPM: Business Politics Management

Both Scott Francis (Leading from Below) and Adam Deane (BPM: Business Politics Management) did a good job of articulating and demonstrating how important politics are in implementing a BPM project. I couldn’t agree more – managing politics is a big part of getting anything done in a business of any size.

There is one point that I think they both missed (or at least didn’t focus on) – managing those politics is just as important as managing the process – and politics exist in every (yes every) non-routine process in business. Unless the process is fully automated (or so routine that it should be fully automated) – people and their judgment are involved. Once that is the case, politics are sure to follow. Those politics are managed in meetings, discussions, conversations, email and documents. Also, they are just as important as the process itself – since they influence the outcome of the process.

So yes, Business Politics Management is the cousin of Business Process Management – a kissing cousin. Most BPMS vendors don’t consider politics something a BPMS should address. In my opinion as long as BPMS tools ignore all the stuff that goes on around the process (i.e. politics), but has influence on the outcome of the process – they have a big hole in functionality.

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2 Responses to “More on the other BPM: Business Politics Management”

  1. Scott Francis Says:

    Jacob-
    Didn’t mean to neglect this point, but I think you made it well. Politics is certainly a necessary part of any endeavor involving people 🙂 Though often people use it as a pejorative to describe only the negative aspects of politics, rather than the positive parts (persuasion, consensus building, sponsorship, etc.).

    I just call into question how much of the politics you want to try to confine to software.

    • Jacob Ukelson Says:

      Scott,
      Hi. I would love if we could capture 100% through software – but of course that is impossible.

      I see some of the social BPM enhancements as a start to capture some of the “politics” through collaboration tools, though they only focus on a small part (the collaborative building of models). I guess I am saying the same thing I usually do – if you look at the creation of BPMS implementation of a process, you see a un- or semi-structured process that can’t be managed through a BPMS. I think many project management tools fit this bill better than BPM tools – maybe that is whats needed for BPM – really useful, usable, BPM specific project management like tools that can be used in the initial phase of a BPM project, and then continue to be useful through the complete process lifecycle (Process Lifecycle Management tools).

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