A short story: orchestrating a healthy Org
The lights dim, the audience quietens in response – and you step towards the rostrum. It was an extraordinary honor for you, Richard James, an amateur conductor, ‘mere’ business CEO, to be invited to do a cameo with the Vienna Philharmonic.
It was a simple piece of course, an early Mozart piano concerto, featuring a young Chinese pianist. But snow at O’Hare had cancelled two days of flights – so there had been no time for any rehearsals at all. Gulp – you lift the white baton to gather the orchestra. It was now or never. Hell, this was more nerve-wracking than any investor presentation.
But, really, what could go wrong? You knew the piece intimately. You had even conducted it before. And the Vienna Philharmonic musicians were among the world’s finest, so relax and enjoy.
It was the second bar when you realized something was awry. The orchestra was going faster than you’d ever imagined.
It came crashing into your head that they were using the revised October 1782 score, while you had the original September 1781 score in front of you. Never mind – maybe you could still get through this.
The orchestra built raggedly towards the entry of the soloist, their eyes looking at you in increasing bewilderment, wondering why your arms were off-beat.
You turned to introduce the pianist. She played from memory of course. It was half a bar later that you realized that she was performing Mozart’s later revision of this work – his January 1783 score, which was much the same, except for the revised timpani line.
The music careered along, jumping and spluttering like a car with water in the tank. Maybe it was OK for an amateur – you might just make it to the end.
But not much can survive when the timpanist is confused. The cacophony grew. Only true grit could save the day. You waved and pummeled the air and pulled them through into the final bar – and silence.
First one clap, then another, then spreading around the hall – until finally tumultuous applause. You bowed, amazed, and left the podium.
In the wings, you overheard a radio presenter gushing into his microphone: ‘…a stunning new interpretation of Mozart in the style of Philip Glass …’
A miraculous survival – again. But as you headed back for a final bow – and definitely no encore – your thoughts turned inexplicably to work.
The importance of documenting your Org
How efficiently is your Org performing? Do you truly understand why you have each custom object or are you ‘winging it’? How much more profitable could your company be if you and other admins knew your Org inside out?
Your Org is like a symphony. The more documented it is, the more harmonious it will sound. Conversely, an undocumented Org is like listening to pre-schoolers playing the violin.
Healthy, documented Orgs don’t happen overnight. Like the London Symphony Orchestra or New York Philharmonic working on a concert, it takes patience, practice and time. And a proven approach.
A world class symphony orchestra doesn’t become good overnight. It takes training, patience and time. It requires multiple musicians to be coordinated and all be at the top of their game. Documenting your Org is no different, over time, it will transform into a robust Org in which everyone (Admins, developers, consultants) knows what’s going on and are able to play to their strengths. It is not just about the quality of the players, but getting them all on the same page. With so many people involved editing your Org, it can go from perfect harmony to discordant in seconds. All it takes is a bunch of changes being made without any documentation or evidence.
Orchestrating your Org to become well-documented is understood. It is 3 simple words: HOW. WHAT. WHY. How does the business process work? What is configure in Salesforce to support that business? Why did you configure it that way?
Applied consistently your Org can transform into a world class symphony orchestra.