It’s that time of year where the kids are heading back to school, the seasons are about to change and YESSS it’s time for the NFL to begin its new season! The other night I was watching the HBO series NFL Hard Knocks about the Cincinnati Bengals training camp and it dawned on me how much a football organization is similar to an ITSM organization and how they incorporate ITIL best practices in their methodology. I know you are saying, what the?????? But hear me out and let me show you a few comparisons.
Strategic Plan: Win the Super Bowl and become the world champions. Well defined, well communicated. Everyone in the organization understands what the fans (customers) want. Strategy defines the perspective, position, plans and patterns that the organization will need to execute to meet its business objectives. This began at the end of the previous season (CSI) as the coaching staff reviewed statistics (CSF & KPI) to identify improvement opportunities for the next season (Problem management) how well they did on investment in personnel (ROI) and how good they performed against the rest of the league (Benchmarking).
Tactical Plan: Ensure that the offense, defense and special teams can work together to carry out the game plan (predefined model for that particular opponent) each week. In other words are all the processes aligned and have they been given the appropriate knowledge and capabilities to ensure that the intended outcomes can be achieved.
Operational Plan: Monitor, measure, maintain and knowledge transfer. Watching film on the upcoming opponents and outlining those areas of weakness that can be exploited by creating offensive and defensive packages (models) that can be implemented against their upcoming rival. Defining roles and responsibilities and reviewing personnel statistics (CSF, KPI, metrics) to look for strengths and weaknesses of each team member. "Practice what is right so you can’t get it wrong” (Vince Lombardi) by engaging in repeatable, proven training methodologies.
So if your favorite team seems to be struggling this year, you may want to drop the coach an ITIL Foundation pocket guide. Enjoy the season and let's play some football.