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Exploring the science and magic of Identity and Access Management
Thursday, April 25, 2024

Whether to Manage or Enable

Author: Mark Dixon
Friday, February 22, 2013
4:21 pm


Management: the act or manner of managing; handling, direction, or control. 

Enablement: to provide (someone) with adequate power, means, opportunity, or authority (to do something)

Several years ago, I heard Steve Sanghi, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President, Microchip Technology Inc., talk about how organization charts should be drawn upside down from the normal downward flow from CEO to employee.  He stressed that business leaders were more effective when they served those within their sphere of stewardship, rather than directed or controlled people. Leaders should enable their people to succeed, rather that dictate from above.

It occurred to me recently that this same viewpoint may apply to Identity Management (or should we call it Identity Enablement?).  The traditional enterprise viewpoint is to tightly control the assignment of access rights to individuals, while the  seemingly opposite user-controlled identity viewpoint would allow individuals to be in charge of their own identities.

Perhaps the two viewpoints could be more harmonious if we focus on enabling individuals to get the most value out of identities and relationships, rather than controlling the relationships.

Just a thought.


Busticate the Behemoths in Your Life

Author: Mark Dixon
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
4:40 am

Busticate: to break into pieces

Behemoth: any creature or thing of monstrous size or power

Image14While I was in heads-down study mode for the CISSP exam last month, on two successive days, the Dictionary.com Word of the Day service sent out the words “Busticate” and “Behemoth” to my mobile phone.

I chuckled a  bit and tried to apply that advice to the exam: Break the broad spectrum of Information Security subject matter into manageable chunks and focus on each chunk in turn.  It seemed to help.  When I receive the results from my test (yes, I am anxious), I’ll have to attribute partial credit to Dictionary.com!

When confronted by seemingly insurmountable obstacles in our lives, we can benefit from this approach: Let’s break out our figurative big hammers and Busticate the Behemoths into manageable chunks that we can successfully manage.

At least for awhile, I think I’ll let this new addage replace the advice of “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time, chew well.”

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