Raymond Whitney

What's "The Triumvirate?"

Blog Post created by Raymond Whitney on Feb 18, 2011

Hint: It's not these guys.


The triumvirate is a thought model I use when thinking about online initiatives.

For a given challenge or project, I seek to understand it from three perspectives:

  • Business need
  • User need
  • Technology

These perspectives are frequently in conflict, sometime contradictory, and (often) difficult to ascertain. But, if you can grasp all three--holding them in your hand and rolling them about--you have a clear picture of what is possible.


Here it is, visually.



Ok. It's not the prettiest image. This is a blog, after all, not a design symposium! And yes, I know that it looks like the Starfleet logo! But it serves to help describe the interrelationship among the three perspectives.


NOT the triumvirate...


How does this work?


It's simple. Learn. Consider. Synthesize. Understand.

  • Learn
    Begin with questions
  • Consider
    How does one of the answers related to the others? Ask questions about the answers.
  • Plot
    Put it together. Roll the ideas about. What does it mean when you plot your target in different places within the framework?
  • Understand
    See the picture and articulate it. Get to the point where decision is possible...and maybe obvious.

I realize that (as described) this view does not take into account things like practicality, resources, and timeframes. They're all part of the calculus. Often, they are the behind-the-scenes elements (the power behind the power) that define what actually gets done.


But that's for another post on another day...


(That's a teaser. It's designed to pique your interest. As Walt Disney is credited with stating: "Always leave them wanting more!")

As always, share and enjoy!