The Architect demonstrates an understanding of the psychological dynamics of customer management and discusses business imperatives, modern techniques and tools for relationship management, industry engagement, contractual agreements, transparency and accountability, and related issues. Managing high-risk scenarios is also a demonstrated competence of the role.

The psychological dynamics of customer management

Five personality dynamics prevail in relatively consistent but unequal proportions.  These recur sequentially for a given work process:

  1. Explore
    1. Understand the complete situation, see relationships, and develop creative solutions.
  2. Excite
    1. Invest in exciting others about the idea. Dissolve silos and develop internal support. Build a team.
  3. Examine
    1. Develop an implementation plan using data. Create schedules, budgets, timetables, clear roles and rules, etc.  Predict problems.  Find faults.
  4. Execute
    1. Aggressively implement the plan. Hold people accountable.  Measure performance.    Strive for completion.
  5. Evaluate
    1. Evaluate the preceding four Dynamics by examining external success (e.g., cost, time, quality, profit) and internal satisfaction (engagement, absence of stress). Adapt the process to increase success and satisfaction going forward.

It’s important to note that each personality dynamic is of equal value and every personality dynamic has an unbounded capacity for growth. However, the way in which the members of each personality dynamic function is completely different.

When there is a lack of recognition of these differences in people, there is often misunderstanding, conflict, and an inability to make use of individual and group potential, whether in the classroom, in the work-place, or in the home.

A healthy relationship between the professional and client is one that includes intense interactions followed by respectful distancing, mutually high demands for quality, complementary but not overlapping visions, and the ability to engage in productive conflict.  The lone genius architect, or any individual professional, is a myth.  Excellence comes from an evolving chemistry among the principal participants.

Business imperatives

The new and sustainable competitive edge resides in improving both staff connectivity (internal relations) and market connectivity (improved win ratio).  The most valuable currency we have is the emotional capital of relationships.  Human beings make decisions first for emotional reasons, second for rational reasons.  The effective architect is present, listens and expects to be surprised, preferring perspectives over being right.  Successful relationships are anchored by character and competence: trust earned through sincerely caring about others and being open.  Without it three problems occur: non-inclusion, the illusion of inclusion and the loudest get heard.

Customers want a consistent, connected, personalized, and efficient experience throughout all phases of the customer lifecycle delivered seamlessly across all touch points. Exceptional Customer Experience (CX) drives revenue and creates loyalty, advocacy, and repeat business. The prevalence of social media today means that customer satisfaction may not only impact repeat business from that person, but frequently also impacts new or repeat business from their social media circle. Therefore, CX is more important than ever.

Top technology priorities for business leaders all center on improving CX in order to retain, serve, upsell to existing clients and lure new clients away from the competition.  Business process and EA practices that focus on blending Design and System Thinking techniques develops a digital enterprise/business that is essential to success.

Modern techniques

There is a gap in the general approach to problem solving between design agencies and enterprise architects.  The former use Design Thinking practices, such as empathy and prototyping, while enterprise architects use deductive reasoning and quantitative analysis, or Systems Thinking.

CX, EA, BP – operate tightly

  • CX: Delight Customers
    • New digital channels
    • Engagement
  • EA: Embrace volatility
    • New acquisitions and markets
    • Build architectures that can sustain bringing on new channels
  • BP: Test and learn loop
    • Continuous Improvement, focus on building a process to further enhance

Balance the 3 by using design thinking instead of system thinking

Design Thinking

  • A collection of practices that helps teams better identify with customer experiences, and shift from logical problem solving to creative experimentation.
System Thinking Practices Design Thinking Practices
Holistic Specific
Linkages Context
Logic Empathy
Deductive Abductive


  • Not with the tech or processes, it’s about discovering information about the company by interacting with the employees
  • Drive empathy using personas of employees and/or customers
    • It’s important to imagine new personas with unique attributes
    • Process team and Architects will take ownership of the persona and develop a solution that satisfies the personas around abductive experimentation practice

Don’t abandon System Thinking completely.  Merge Design and System thinking

System thinking correlated with Design thinking

System Thinking Practices Design Thinking Practices
Process models Journey maps
Capability maps Personas
Target Operation Models Storytelling

Design Thinking

  • Collaborative
    • Working with people who share similar and dissimilar experiences to generate richer work.
  • Abductive
    • Starts from a set of accepted facts and works back to their most likely explanation
  • Experimental
    • Build prototypes. Pose hypotheses. Test.    All to manage risk.
  • Personal
    • Realize each problem – and the people there to solve it – has a unique context.
  • Integrative
    • Seeing the whole system and its many connections.

Customer journey map using a persona (highlighting customer’s key goals and pet peeves) to walk CX through process milestones

  • Goals
    • Initial research and expectation setting
    • Deeper research and consideration
    • Commitment moment
  • Actions
  • Experience

Translate internal business value (inside out) to customer’s perception of business value (outside in)

Inside Out (Efficiency, Productivity, Quality) Outside In (Convenience, Engagement, Advocacy)
Business Process Improvement Customer Experience Improvement
Focus on efficiency Focus on value creation
The model and the process is the subject The customer and their life is the subject
The business identifies the problem The customer identifies the problem
Respond to customer feedback Respond to latent and anticipated customer needs
Design with business teams Design with customers
Design operating principles Design service principles
Define benchmarks and metrics Determine what customers truly value
Define, measure, analyze, improve, control, replicate Discover, define, develop, deliver


Inside Out Outside In
Efficiency Convenience
Productivity Engagement
Quality Advocacy

A high quality architecture doesn’t equate to high adoption

Outside In Metrics

Convenience Engagement Advocacy
Time to complete Abandoned carts Net promoter scores
Channels engaged System workarounds Visitor frequency
Number of attempts Shadow processes Social sentiment

Architects need to be an accelerator and not a barrier to enhancing CX

The IT service can use CX practices to refine their BP internally.

Getting things right the first time and a zero-defect mentality are counterproductive, since they tend to create a risk-averse and uncreative atmosphere.  A self-empowered organization is the ideal environment to create knowledge.  Giving the team access to customers provides a much better understanding of the purpose and what they are trying to accomplish.  The project as a whole becomes more meaningful and they see how their work is going to impact real people.  Then let the team negotiate directly with customers to understand their priorities and take ownership of commitments.

Results, whether customer satisfaction, process outcomes or service excellence, are dependent on an organization’s ability to learn, innovate, and redesign its work in response or anticipation of what is happening in the environment.  Effective organizations do this through quality decision-making by a collaborative workforce comprised of individuals motivated to continually clarify and deepen their personal vision, focus energies, develop patience, and see reality objectively.


Awareness of the personality dynamics offers new opportunities:

  • Greater individual self-understanding and growth
  • Greater understanding of others
  • Improved communication and cooperation
  • More effective teaching and learning

Personality profiles and character taxonomy: DISC, Enneagram, Myers-Briggs

Emotional Quotient

Tools for relationship management Industry engagement

  • SOW – Deliverables, Simple is better, Highly detailed saves money and minimizes riskStrategic objectives documentBusiness use-case model and definition
  • High-level tools suggested in traditional strategic analysis…
    • SWOT analysis
    • Five Forces analysis
    • Partner accountability mapping
  • Standards Bodies –
    • International
      • ISO, IEC, ITU
    • Regional
    • National
    • SDOs
      • Retail
        • ARTS
      • Electrical
        • IEEE
        • AES
  • Papers (IASA)
  • Whitepapers
  • Blogging
  • Talks/Presentations (NOREX)
  • Industry conferences (NRF)
  • Certification
  • RFI/Q/P
  • Business Case
  • Business Requirements
  • System Requirements
  • Business object model (business entities)
  • System use-case model
  • System object model
  • Code
  • Test plan and test cases
  • Implementation plan
  • Project plan and schedule
  • As supporting information, I would include links to descriptions of each deliverable.
  • Contract Compliance
  • Copyright/Trademark
  • Master Service Agreement
  • Intellectual Property

Tools for Contractual agreements

The assigned architect should be involved in the project planning and contract drafting and negotiation.

  • Define the parties’ expectations before a project starts.
  • Guide parties’ actions during the project.
  • Protect parties’ rights.
  • Facilitate parties’ ability to resolve issues quickly and inexpensively.
  • Enable a third party (judge, jury, arbitrator, or company executives) to adjudicate fairly, in the event of a dispute that cannot be resolved internally.

Read the contract over the course of the project to stay abreast of how its contents can affect the design and other decisions.

Tools for Transparency and accountability

Managing company IT assets – confidentiality

Continuous improvement

Being allowed to fail

Governance: ITIL, OSIMM, CMM

Audit: CMMI


Resource Plan

Conflict Management

Related issues

The enterprise architect is bound to meet resistance in escalating nonconformance to the steering committee.  However, she rarely has a really strong case to make the steering committee act in her favor especially when the solution has already been implemented by the project team and is working as intended in the production environment.  Neither compromise nor confrontation works well.  It is therefore of utmost importance for an enterprise architect to convincingly negotiate.  He needs to create a win-win situation for both parties rather than falling into the trap of argumentative discussions.  It is a real test to measure the enterprise architect’s interpersonal skills.

Both architecture conformance and post-implementation reviews are opportunities for an enterprise architect to engage closely with project teams.  On one hand, they allow the enterprise architect to guide the development effort and ensure that project teams conform to the strategic direction.  On the other hand, they help her backfill the enterprise architecture by consciously gathering and assimilating the best practices and lessons learned in real-life projects.  EA begins with conceptualization, idea generation and philosophical preaching, but it gains substance only after gathering practical revelations from the projects on the ground.  Hence these review processes can well be seen as mechanisms to backfill the enterprise architecture.  They should enable two-way communication between the enterprise architecture and the project teams – guiding but also learning, governing while accepting feedback

Lack of appreciation for structure, process and best practices

Partnering with the business when IT is slower than the business (not a value added service), end-arounds,

Becoming the face of IT for the business; the go-to resource for all things wrong with IT

Cultural and Specialty Diversity

Managing high-risk scenarios

Defining key risk indicators helps enterprises achieve their goals, seize opportunities and seek greater return with less risk. It works at the intersection of business and IT and allows enterprises to manage and even capitalize on risk in the pursuit of their objectives.

Risks related to late project delivery, compliance, misalignment, obsolete IT architecture and IT service delivery problems

Using COBIT and Val IT to mitigate risk; the link between risk and COBIT control objectives and Val IT key management practices


Why does an architect need this skill?

Common tasks involved in this skill?

What is their ownership in this skill?

Name an example of how an architect would use this in daily activities?

Proven Practices

Describe why an architect should be involved in this skill at a corporate level

The architect works with the internal marketing and sales teams, for example, and can advise them on data correlations, intelligence and systems related to those areas, acting in a consulting capacity.  Architects rarely interface with the external customers, even in software manufacturing firms; the field team (sales reps, engineers, etc.) manages that responsibility.  One exception would be consulting companies that provide architects either on an hourly basis for solutioning or as staff augmentation for a tactical project team.

That doesn’t mean that EA isn’t responsible for the customer’s experience: more indirectly, at the strategic level.

Enterprise Architecture is a strategic planning function that uses a methodical scientific approach to address the gaps between the goals of a business and the execution of strategy needed to reach them.  Using the TEN STRATEGIC QUESTIONS above, Enterprise Architects can capture opportunities and oversights that senior executives may miss.  One of those key questions addresses customer experience issues.  Therefore, when an organization fails to deliver good customer experiences, Enterprise Architecture, when used properly, can help to address the situation.

  • Are we targeting the right customers for the growth that we need? (Customer Profile)
  • Do we have a good understanding of what our customers want and need? (VOC)
  • Do we have a compelling value proposition to address the needs and demands of those customers? (Value Proposition)
  • Are we developing products and services that deliver on our value proposition, or is there a gap in our products and/or services that we need to address? (Products and Services)
  • Have we considered all of the channels we should be using, or are we using too many channels, to distribute our products and services to our customers? (Channels)
  • Do we have a good idea of the resources we need to deliver on our value proposition? (Resources)
  • Do we know how to use our resources sufficiently well to produce the results that customers expect? (Required Competencies)
  • Have we addressed all the cost and revenue implications of the resources, competencies, and channels that we’ve selected? (Cost and Revenue Models)
  • Are we reaching our customers in the geographies and locales in which they live and work, and if not, why not? (Geographies and Locales)
  • Have we relied on partners in the right way, leveraging their strengths and the cost implications of using them without opening ourselves to problems of key dependencies? (partner profiles)

General Systems Theory: Four Types of Systems

There are four basic types of system depending on whether the parts and the whole can display choice, and therefore, be purposeful.

Only animate (people) and social systems (corporations) can be said to be purposeful.

Systems or their parts are purposeful if, by their choices, they can produce (a) the same outcome in different ways in the same environment and (b) different outcomes in the same and different environments.

Primary push back and/or challenges for architects

The way we’ve always done it is comfortable and contributed to our success so far so why change.

How would a stakeholder engage an architect for assistance utilizing this skill?


Stakeholder Relationship Management

The coordination of relationships with and between key stakeholders, during the design, management and implementation of business change.

Iasa Certification Level Learning Objective
CITA- Foundation
  • Learner will be able to name the various legal forms of a business
CITA – Associate
  • Learner will be able to describe the differences between various legal forms
  • Learner will be able to describe the impacts of each form from the view of the business owners
CITA – Specialist
  • Learner will be able to describe the implications, and especially limitations, of an organization’s current legal structure
  • Learner will be able to describe how to book funds received from owners and funds paid to owners
CITA – Professional
  • Learner will be able to describe the optimum legal structure for an endeavor, including scenarios in which spin-offs or subsidiaries might be beneficial
  • Learner will know the circumstances under which competent legal and tax advice is required

Selling and Sales Support

The identification of sales prospects and their qualification, the development of customer interest and the preparation (including managing the bid process), execution and monitoring of the sale of any IT or related product or service.

Iasa Certification Level Learning Objective
CITA- Foundation
  • Learner can compute ROI and IRR for an investment
  • Learner can identify costs and benefits for an investment, including intangible costs and benefits
  • Learner can identify and describe the basic financial statements
  • Learner can identify business events and how they affect various financial statements
CITA – Associate
  • Learner can evaluate the business case for a proposed investment using ROI, IRR, or cost/benefit analysis
  • Learner can determine whether a proposed investment is aligned with company goals and describe why or why not
  • Learner can compute basic financial ratios
  • Learner can interpret basic financial ratios and what they say about the health of a business
CITA – Specialist
  • Learner is able to show the effects a potential investment might have on the basic financial ratios for a company
  • Learner is able to interpret the viability of an investment in financial terms
  • Learner is able measure and assess the performance of a process or function using financial measures, including structural performance ratios
  • Learner can identify when a process is not performing from a financial perspective
CITA – Professional
  • Learner routinely evaluates potential investments in terms of the effects they have on company health and performance
  • Learner measures and monitors company performance
  • Learner evaluates financing and funding options using financial analysis
  • Learner can troubleshoot the financial performance of a process or business unit to determine the root causes of poor (or good) performance

Account Management

The coordination of marketing, advisory, selling and delivery activities to internal or external organizations to achieve satisfaction for the customer and an acceptable business return for the supplier.

Iasa Certification Level Learning Objective
CITA- Foundation
  • Learner can name and describe the three fundamental flows
CITA – Associate
  • Learner can identify the three flows in a case study or business
  • Learner can describe when the flows intersect and why, and describe what that means
CITA – Specialist
  • Learner can identify, describe and document each of the flows in their company
  • Learner can describe how a project might affect one or more of the flows
  • Learner can identify when a project has not considered a flow even though there is likely an effect on that flow
CITA – Professional
  • Learner demonstrates deep understand of the three flows within the context of his or her company
  • Learner can evaluate a potential investment in terms of the effects it might have on each of the flows

Benefits Management

Benefits Management is the process of monitoring for the emergence of anticipated benefits (typically specified as part of the business case for a project) and includes action to optimize the positive business impact of individual and combined benefits. Architects should continuously evaluate benefits – financial and non-financial, immediate and long term, direct and indirect, resulting from architecture solutions as a direct indicator of the value of architecture. Benefits should be tracked, measured and reported. Deviations from the projected outcomes, positive or negative should be analyzed and implemented into architecture.

Iasa Certification Level Learning Objective
CITA- Foundation
  • Learner will be able to describe common attributes of business and technology benefits
  • Learner will be able to measure benefits related to cost savings
CITA – Associate
  • Learner will be able to track direct business benefits arising from a technology solution
  • Learner will be able to classify benefits and value additions
CITA – Specialist
  • Learner will be able to identify business benefits that are aligned to the business KPIs
  • Learner will be able to track benefits and compare actual versus planned benefits
  • Learner will be able to analyze deviations from projected benefits
  • Learner will be able to explain co-relation between architecture and business benefits
CITA – Professional
  • Learner will be able to track benefits against enterprise KPIs
  • Learner will be able to compare benefits of a solution with respect to industry benchmarks
  • Learner will be able to measure direct and indirect benefits
  • Learner will be able to perform benefit classification
  • Learner will be able to define architecture action to address deviations in planned versus actual benefits


Articles/Books –

  1. The E-Hospital Website Measure Architecture Approach: Integrating Internal and External Customers’ Needs in Information Delivery Services / C. C. Chang / Asian Journal of Health and Information Sciences, Vol. 2, Nos. 1-4, pp. 116-131, 2007
  2. Human Dynamics / Miriam Grace and Sandra Y. Jeffcoat / Skyscrapr, 2007
  3. “Diplomatic” Software: Customer Relations / Henry Rosales / Skyscrapr, 2007
  4. The Customer: The Missing Link / Richard F. Weldon, Jr. / Skyscrapr, 2007
  5. Conflict Management / Othel Rolle / Skyscrapr, 2007
  6. The Speed Of Trust / Stephen R. Covey / Free Press, 2006
  7. The EA Metamodel behind the Business Model Generation / Nick Malik / Inside Architecture, 2012
  8. Is Enterprise Architecture accountable for improving customer experience? / Nick Malik/Inside Architecture, 2012
  9. Enterprise Architecture at Work: Modelling, Communication and Analysis / Marc Lankhorst / Springer Heidelberg New York, 2013
  10. Architecture: The Story of Practice / Dana Cuff / MIT Press, 1992
  11. Collaborative Enterprise Architecture: Enriching EA with Lean, Agile, and Enterprise 2.0 practices / Stefan Bente, Uwe Bombosch, Shailendra Langade / Morgan Kaufmann, 2012
  12. Five Best Practices for Improving EA Communications / Anne Lapkin / Gartner, 2010
  13. Lean Software Development: An Agile Toolkit / Mary and Tom Poppendieck / Addison-Wesley Professional, 2003
  14. Foundations of the 5 Dynamics Model and Assessment / Mike Sturm and Dr. Peter Nelson / 5 Dynamics LLC, 2011

Blogs/Webcasts/News/Reference Sources –

  1. Human Dynamics International
  2. Zachman International
  3. Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) Institute
  4. The Enterprise Business Motivation Model
  5. Standards organization
  6. Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP)
  7. Systems thinking
  8. The Fifth Discipline
  9. Architecting Better Customer Experiences: The Nexus of EA and CX

Training –

  1. Fierce, Inc.
  2. Situational Self Leadership, The Ken Blanchard Companies
  3. Star Achievement Series, Office Dynamics International

Certifications –

  1. Risk Management
    1. Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), ISACA
    2. Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC), ISACA
  2. Architecture
    1. Certified in the Governance of Enterprise IT (CGEIT), ISACA
    2. Certified Information Technology Architect (CITA), IASA
    3. The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF), The Open Group

Glossary of terms –

Business model
– A static description of what a business must coordinate to meet a coherent set of value propositions.

Value proposition
– The perceived value of the products and services offered as viewed from the customer’s perspective.

Customer segments
– The way we segment the customers and non-customers in the market as targets for the offered value propositions.

Customer relations
– The link we maintain between the customer segments and the value proposition.

– The activities we need to perform to be able to service the value propositions.

Value network
– The partners and suppliers we work together with in our processes.

– The things and competences we use in our processes.

– The collection of costs accrued by executing the business model.

– The collection of revenues generated by the customer segments as they consume the value propositions.


richard vijay

Richard Vijay
Consultant, Lead – Jaguar

Richard possesses expertise in implementing world class IT systems and Product Lifecycle Management(PLM) solutions to automotive and aerospace OEMs worldwide. He has over 10 years of experience working for well-known organizations such as Jaguar Land Rover UK, TATA Motors European Technology Centre, TATA Daewoo Commercial vehicles, TATA Motors, and Airbus. He is currently on assignments requiring specialized service management, leadership, business architecture, solutions architecture, analysis, and project management expertise.

Richard’s education includes a degree in Mechanical Engineering from PSG Polytechnic, a Bachelors of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering from Bharathiar University(India), and a Masters of Mechanical Engineering from PSG College of Technology, Anna University (India). His focus is to deliver best-in-class results for Product Lifecycle Management initiatives towards organizational strategic and tactical goals.