One of my favourite words in IT transformation is "Theatre". We must get rid of it.

IT is riddled with theatre: a performance which creates the illusion of something happening but which everybody knows is not real, yet we all tacitly agree to go along with the illusion.

Performances reviews.
So many staff performance reviews bear no resemblance to the reality of what has happened in the past year that a number of organisations are now abandoning these as farcical theatre.

So much time and energy is wasted on inventing magical numbers so the money can be doled out for the coming year. There are more efficient and realistic ways of doing this.

Security experts for tell you that the most serious security threats come from within an organisation and yet most of the security energy goes into defending the perimeter. This is no better example of security theatre than the TSA show performed in American airports.

Change management.
Surely nobody seriously believes that conventional IT operational change management actually produces value from reduced risk anywhere near proportionate to its negative impact on productivity and morale. It is a function whose primary purpose is to reassure management that bad things are being prevented.

Project management.
Project management was imposed on IT several decades ago in an attempt to connect money input with benefits derived, but of course everybody knows that any correlation is accidental.

What other theatre can you think of in IT?

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