Governance and Management

Purpose

The Governance and Management pattern captures the concepts and relations that explain how parties organize that their objectives are realized, either by doing the associated work themselves, or by arranging for other parties to do that. The contribution of this pattern is to show how this is done, based on the idea that every objective has a single party that owns the objective.

Introduction

Whether or not an objective is realized can be seen by the status of the associated results, as is explained there. The following figure is a recap of the objective-concept (using the usual notations and conventions):

A Party's Objectives

Figure 1. Parties and their objectives.

Note that there are two 'sides' to each objective (and their results):

  1. the production side. Here, it is important that the budgets and other resources are planned, and made available to produce the results. This includes the specification of timelines (deadlines) for the production, as well as the properties and other characteristics (security, quality, sustainability, etc.) of what is actually being produced/maintained. It also deals with making the tools and policies (e.g. working instructions) available for doing all this. We will use the term 'management' to refer to these activities, and the term 'manager' to refer to the role of a party that performs such activities. Hence, developing performance indicators, i.e. gauges that measure how well the resources are spent in this production/maintenancd work are also part of this.

  2. the consumption side. Here, it is important that the budgets and other resources are planned, and made available to (obtain and to) actually use the results. This includes the specification of timelines (deadlines) for the results to become available, as well as the properties and other characteristics (security, quality, sustainability, etc.) that results must have in order to make them effective ('fit for purpose' - fit to be used as intended by the consuming party). We will use the term 'governance' to refer to these activities, and the term 'governor' to refer to the role of a party that performs such activities. Hence, developing effectiveness indicators, i.e. gauges that measure how 'fit' the results are to be used/consumed for the intended purposes, are also part of this governance.

A party that owns an objective gets to decide whether he will do the production side, the consumption side, or both. The easiest is if the party chooses to do both, thus not only creating/maintaining specific results, but also actually using them. What makes this easy is that coordination between 'supply' (the production side) and 'demand' (the consumption side) is done within one knowledge, i.e. the knowledge of the party that owns the objective. Coordination between budgets, timelines, the characteristics of the results, etc., are much easier when all this gets to be decided by a single party.

Managing and Governing

The following figure illustrates the situation where this is not the case (using the usual notations and conventions):

managing and governing

Figure 1. Managing and governing objectives.

When a party decides to outsource the production side, he must then find another party to do that for him. We say that the objective, the results of which are to be realized by that other party, is an 'expectation' of the first party. So an 'expectation' is an objective that is owned by a party that does not itself realizes the associated results. Assuming that every objective is to be meaningful to its owner, we conclude that this party is (one of) the consumer(s) of these results, and hence will govern this/its objective, but not manage it. This party may find it useful to communicate its needs (e.g. the timelines/deadlines, the characteristics that makes the results 'fit-for-purpose', etc.) to the party that it requests to produce these results, as this makes it easier for that party to do so.

If such a party accepts the request (to realize some results), it will have created an objective (that it owns itself), that is associated with the results that it is going to produce, and the associated specification of timelines, characteristics etc. A party may also decide to realize some results without any explicit request - and even if it does not intend to use/consume them itself. We will refer to an objective, the results of which are realized by its owner, as an 'obligation' of that owner.

The main contribution of this pattern lies in

  • the observation that in any case where the consumer/user of a result (product/service) and the producer/maintainer thereof are different parties, each of them have their own objective that is associated with a result (specification), and
  • the consequence thereof that, since such objectives are part of a different knowledge, one must not assume that they are the same.

As a consequence, parties that govern an objective of theirs but do not manage it, should ensure that the results that the producer is realizing are in fact fit for purpose. Conversely, parties that manage an objective of theirs but do not govern it, should ensure they know which other parties will use the results, and what makes them fit for (their) purposes.

The processes for governing and/or managing of objectives can be controlled by deploying a suitable control process.