“Never Walk Into A Place You Don’t Know How To Walk Out Of” – What “Ronin” Teaches us about DevSecOps, Cloud and Agile

“Cloud… Agile…Containers…Serverless…DevOps… even DevSecOps, we, as technologists, managers, users and executives are deluged with “this is your cutting edge today” buzzwords, methodologies, frameworks and solutions – but what are you to do to make sense of them, let alone make the right choice that doesn’t send you down the wrong path or bankrupt your resource pool? It’s pretty bold to say, “it’s easier than you think,” but there’s at least some good resources, lessons learned, as well as some good examples to hold out that can be observed, adapted and adopted by teams and organizations if you’re up to the challenge.

But why do I bring up the John Frankenheimer film “Ronin”? It all boils down to a scene early in the film, as the team is coalescing in café, all but one in there is unfamiliar with the environment and has a full picture of what is about to go down. The anti-hero, Sam, utters a line after the meeting, after he reaches behind a box to retrieve his previously stashed weapon: “I never walk into a place I don’t know how to walk out of”. However, many discussions with executives and other leadership take the form of the follow up question from the opposing character, Deirdre: “Then why would you get into that van?” – Sam: “You know the reason.”

We have to transform our organizations through the measured adoption of new technologies, or incur lasting technical debt, which bleeds across the organization to process debt, and leads to real debt, as more resources are expended to keep older systems running and operating, even though more cost and operationally efficient options exist. This talk will review the various stages required to successfully transform and modernize technical operations with an eye on the maturity levels and states of example organizations. I will discuss how to unify, often siloed teams and workstreams, as well as how to have meaningful conversations with business process owners and senior leadership to help build support and assist in marketing the change for success.”

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