Webinar with Scott Ambler: Agile Modeling: A Disciplined Approach to Modelling and Documentation
Tuesday I attended a webinar with Scott Ambler "Agile Modeling: A Disciplined Approach to Modelling and Documentation".
Scott is mainly known for his work in the Systems area and the author for "Disciplined Agility". His ideas are very valid also in the field of "Business Modelling". And Scott has always interesting formulations bringing things to the point.
Tuesday he used multiple times the phrase "Under Modelling" and explained the benefits and why you should start small - just good enough. and grow from there. This is also very true in Business Modelling. A very common problem in Business Process Modelling is a too detailed description, the effort is too high, and understanding and acceptance diminishes. In doing "Under Modelling" - intentionally - we can avoid many problems. We have to accept that models are incomplete and maybe incorrect at least to a certain level of abstraction. It is easier, more efficient to add missing model elements (for the purpose), often stakeholders make us aware and often they can also deliver the information needed for the models.
What is against this approach? First the culture (in our organizations, in our countries, etc.). Germans are precise. Accepting an "incomplete" model? Or a problem with open questions? It has to be correct and it has to correct in the first try. I had the situation with a (potential) customer lately. The process model contained an activity "Switch on machine". Think of the effort on this level of abstraction, Think of the acceptance. What will a user of this model say? We have to assume that our workers are intelligent. In some cases, we maybe have to describe it at this level, e.g. if compliance is important. We will find out!
But often activities are described just to have them described, And then "Under Modelling" can help. We have to see this also in the context of our methodology: When do we need really a 100% precise model?
The slides for the webinar can be found at LinkedIn. More important is the spoken word. A recording can be found on YouTube.