We need a movement

"What if..." "What if..." So many great minds, and a few not-so-great ones, are trying to "solve" ITSM right now. It's a geek thing. It's a man thing.

Remember that old stereotype about how the man is always trying to fix the woman's problem and all she wants is for him to shut up and listen to her talk about it and do a little caring? So here are a couple of sweeping generalisations for you:

men want to fix everything

and technical men want to fix everything with things

Apparently ITSM is broken. It can't cope with Cloud. It doesn't reflect the true customer. It doesn't even work.

Especially ITIL. What a load of bull that is. Doesn't work. useless, misleading. A consulting scam.

And the community is especially broken.

Apparently we need a whole new body of knowledge to fix it, and/or a new community tool.

"What if all the tool vendors..." You mean like CMDBf? Look how well the vendors worked together on that and how much result we got for their efforts

or SPACL from the catalogue vendor community

Or maybe a vendor could go it alone and put something into the public domain.... like MOF.

Or what about open content? I talked about that the other day. Aale made the interesting statement "Past failures do not guarantee that all future attempts fail." When I was in sales, we had a saying: "when the horse is dead, dismount".

We don't need a site. Or a framework. Or content. We've got those up the wazoo. We've got everyTHING we need to replace ITIL and ITSM. But it's not happening.

We need a movement (no bad-taste jokes thanks folks). And I'm beginning to think that, whatever Seth Godin and all the social wonks try to tell us, you cam't synthesise a movement. You gotta wait until it spontaneously ignites (as Aale also observed recently). ITIL was a pretty unlikely hit when it happened. I suspect the next will be just as unexpected. By all means keep floating stuff but expect most to go nowhere - don't expect to predict the hit.

And don't expect to predict when either. Just maybe ITIL is meeting needs right now. A few IT philosophers get all fizzy about ITIL's deficiencies, including me. And all the noisy dancing rabble running after the Cloud parade and the Social gypsy caravan seem to think they need something new, but they'll sober up, run out of money, and come home to a real job soon enough. I think the great unwashed masses are pretty happy with ITIL for the time being. Maybe now's just not the time for something to reach critical mass.

In the meantime don't go running about after gourds and sandals. We've got IT to run. Get back to work. Get back to working with what we've got, which is ITIL and COBIT and ISO20000 and lots of other bits and pieces that almost nobody knows about. Do some caring and sharing.

When the real new movement arrives you'll know it when you see it.



Yes I agree wth this - its not that ITIL is broken but that the schedule of maintenance is out of synch. We definitley don;t need new methodologies or organisations but some clarity and simplicity around the key messages - implementation know-how, value proposition, plus some key areas like 'CMS/CMDB' etc etc.

Most of all we need some to be able to speed up how we implemement service management, as well as the process fo renewing ITIL itself. I think for all of this we just need some good leadership to steer the industry trhough this difficult period and to point to wher the answers are (already) to the key questions.

The original vision for v3

The original vision for v3 was for continuous incremental improvement. Cobit 5 has the same aspiration
We shall see

Hype cycle

From the hype cycle perspective, the Peak of Inflated Expectations is way behind, the Trough of Disillusionment is passed, so we're pretty much on the slope of Enlightment and the Plateau of Productivity shouldn't be very far.

Actually, that sounds like very goor news for everyone.

good point

Dead right. Wish I'd made that point. I think its true for itsm and for ITIL
However something I've been meaning to blog about for years is that not all systems are a stable smooth curve like Gartner's. It might oscillate wildly between expectations and despair

Not for everything

The hype model implies that everything will work. If you look at old Gartner graphs, there are a fair amount of things that did not make it. Here's one set of graphs: http://adverlab.blogspot.com/2008/08/media-history-through-gartner-hype.... Look for vanishing solutions. My guess is that itsm is on that path but ITIL will disappear before maturity.

Many consultants keep painting IT practitioners as failures who don't get it (not critizicing the great Pink11 opening video) but I have a feeling that there are also practitioners who quietly have gone beyond ITIL. Commercial IT service providers have no need to reveal their secrets if they think that they have invented superior methods for internal processes. They do not need ITIL sprouting consultants which means that the ITIL people will not get to know them.


The Anglo-Dutch curve

You might also want to consider that by the time ITIL went viral in the US it was relatively old hat in the UK and Netherlands, which is probably one reason so few people over here get as het up about some of the debates. To a large extent it is just seen as part of the landscape, with the odd organisation going through a fundamentalist revival every now and then.

James Finister

Don't forget us Aussies and the South Africans!

Somewhat early adopters of ITIL compared to the septic tanks.

Finland followed US


I know, the strange thing is that ITIL came to Finland and the rest of Europe outside UK and Benelux only after it broke thru in the US. I personally organized the first open Itil Foundation course here and was very active in the beginning, which partially explains why I bother still to get het up about it. Actually I've promised myself a couple of times to let it be.


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