I’ve been a competitive and intense athlete most of my life from rock climbing in Yosemite, bike racing in Europe, skiing/snowboarding in Alaska and sailing in a few World Championships. I understand what it takes to strive to be number one, from setting obtainable goals, creating a plan of attack, consistent training and using the best equipment your budget can provide. Designing and developing software applications uses the exact same concepts and principles if you want to be successful.
Keeping with this training analogy it’s important for clients to create realistic goals with their software projects that are based on their budgets. Clients need to understand that if their competitors have a million dollar website they are not going to get the same thing for $50,000. Just like a NASCAR team, the best teams usually have the biggest budgets, very experienced and talented people and well thought out goals and objectives. Once clients determine their budgets it’s important to educate them on where they are going to be playing in their market. By educating them on their proper place in the market place their goals and objectives can be adjusted so success will be likely.
Now, developing a client’s long term software development roadmap is exactly the same as a coach will develop an athlete’s roadmap with short and long term goals, each goal building on the previous and continually climbing the ladder to success.
When I approach a new project I look at the client and see where they fit in to their market place. Are they a small company looking to make minor improvements but basically happy where they are. Are they a medium sized company with big plans to move into new markets or are they a large company after total domination. Of course there’s are infinite combinations of the above but it’s usually very easy to determine what they are and where they want to go when developing the web architecture. Now, do they have a realistic budget to get there? The great thing is that no matter what their budget is there’s always a creative solution to meet their goals.