Our work should matter.  It should mean something not only to ourselves, but also to the people we help with the work we do. 

In the IT world, it can seem so disconnected between conceiving of projects and delivering to end users (especially if we only ever deal with the beginning stages) that it’s easy to lose sight of what it all means, making work seem like a chore.  Or worse… drudgery, or a never-ending cycle of never getting closure, and having no THING to show for your efforts.

This thing we do called “work”—this work life we combine with our *real* lives so that we can pay the bills and buy cars and houses and raise up our families and ultimately retire—is not something we must simply bear on the way to that beach house in our golden years. 

Last week we were reminded, when Dr. Maya Angelou passed, of the importance of living your life with purpose and to embrace your ability and responsibility to positively impact the community on a daily basis.  My social media feeds were flooded with her wise words, and I couldn’t help but think of how her wisdom is applicable to our business lives, as well as our personal lives.  There is one quote in particular that is seared into my brain, “Do the best you can until you know better.  Then, when you know better, do better.”  This adage is so elegant in its simplicity and its applicability across so many situations.

200167914-001I have thought these words to myself on the job fairly frequently.  When you realize that communication is breaking down, you must step up and fix it—once you are able to recognize the symptoms of a break down, you can prevent future breakdowns.  When you see that the methodology is not working with the client’s style or culture, you stop, analyze, and figure out a solution that will work for you both.  You take these learning experiences with you to the next project and the next. It’s life, you know. You grow up. And in growing, you and all of your experience becomes valuable—which is how you grow your career and your paycheck and your confidence and, well, everything.

Dr. Angelou also said, “There’s a world of difference between truth and facts. Facts can obscure truth.” The facts may say one thing—the numbers—the data—the “trends”—can all point in one direction, while on the ground, looking at the human aspect of a situation/need/problem, the solution may have nothing to do with what the numbers say.  Numbers mean nothing without context.  And since business and business success is really rooted in relationships, context is everything.  Look for the truth in your work relationships with business partners, co-workers, clients, and even in “real life.” You may have facts that don’t mean what you think they mean. 

And finally, for inspiration, especially in the BPM world, Dr. Angelou said, “The need for change bulldozed a road down the center of my mind.”  When your work, your relationships, and your life need change, it’s time to clear out all of the “solutions” that didn’t work and create a solution that will.  You will need a new foundation to build on.  You might not know exactly which direction to go, but if you have cleared out all of the underbrush and deadwood, the view is clear and you have the potential to see what you might have missed before. 

There is a lot of room for change in this world, a lot of improvements to be made, and a lot of life to live.  I am thankful that I have been able to hear and read the sage advice of Dr. Angelou, although I am saddened by her passing from this life.  I know her words will continue to inspire me to move forward, to work for change, to look for the truth, and to do better when I know better.

As for Architech Solutions, we have proudly supported projects that mean more than just presenting a product.  Pega has supported 10 large scale public sector projects, and ATS has supported 5 of those same projects.  ATS is aware of the relationship-centric nature of business, which is one of the driving forces behind our COE solution, as well as our Healthcare solutions.  Our team is experienced not only in delivering quality work, but also in bringing those skills that foster better business relationships:  facilitation, collaboration, conflict resolution, a teamwork mindset, and the ability to listen. 

To learn more about Architech Solutions and our Build for Change ™ approach, visit us at PegaWORLD 2014 next week, or email us at . We’ll be the ones in orange!