Yesterday, I read a blog by Sourya Biswas, titled “How to Avoid a Cloud Computing Gold Rush.  The main message was (excerpted):

    1. We should be realistic. Thinking that cloud computing will make all our IT issues evaporate is not being realistic. Thinking that IT problems can be mitigated, is.
    2. We should consider all the possible risks of cloud computing, and work actively to address them (See: Cloud Computing Risks (And How to Deal with Them)). Working cooperatively is definitely recommended. (See: Can The RSA Conference Help Dispel Cloud Computing Security Fears? )
    3. We shouldn’t stop innovating and learning.

Sourya’s explanation of how to avoid the “Gold Rush” was a parallel to my earlier posts about Social Media Tools.  Essentially I stated that keeping social Media tools in the right light just as Sourya put forth in his blog.

When I start discussions regarding Social Media Tools (or network deployments or just about anything), I first want to understand what the Goals are.  Beginning with the End in Mind (Thank you, Stephen Covey) is important to make sure that whatever tool you employ stays in the right light and doesn’t become an overwhelming issue that shadows the goal. My preferred method for keeping everything aligned towards achieving goals is the classic concentric circle model with an inside out analysis.

An inside out analysis requires discussing and determining Goals to the point of getting them written down.  Often times a company’s or business’ stated goals are sufficient. Sometimes deep discussion is required. It is crucial to stay with the goals and not start running into the next circles. Creeping into the other circles lessens the focus and diffuses the outcomes. Once agreement is reached for goals, then the next step to determine what is needed to execute to achieve the goals. Again, taking care to not allow creeping out to support and/or infrastructure until decisions are taken.  The steps continue until the outside circle is completed.  Often the process will stop and start over as hurdles or obstacles are met. This is a natural ebb and flow as this is sometimes required to truly understand the interdependencies of each circle. Ultimately, this exercise gives all involved parties the same objectives and methods.  It also gives everyone the benchmark to return to so that any individual tool doesn’t become burdensome.

Keeping realistic in the use of Cloud computing capabilities follows the concentric circles naturally.  At the conclusion, does the infrastructure and support capabilities provide the ability to execute to achieve goals? If yes, then realism is just around the corner.