Two acronyms: ENDS and MEANS

A bit forced, I’ll admit, but these two acronyms may at least be useful as checklists in enterprise-architecture and beyond.

First, ENDS – the reasons or drivers for doing anything:

  • Expectation – What we expect from and in the world, and in ourselves; which in part is driven by…
  • Need – What we experience and understand as needful, for ourselves, for others, and for the wider world; which, at a perhaps deeper level, is experienced as…
  • Desire – That which drives us to act, a literal ’emotion’ or outward-moving; which in turn is underpinned by…
  • Spirit or Soul – That which encompasses who we are, and what has meaning for us, at an existential level, both as individuals and collectively.

And MEANS – how we reach towards the desired ends:

  • Method – Structures and step-by-step processes; yet which can do nothing on their own without…
  • Energy – The ability to power the respective work, in chemical, electrical, mechanical, human or other form; which must be expressed in…
  • Action – Using the available energy to enact the work of the method; as guided by…
  • Nous – Knowledge, wit and wisdom, and the hard-earned experience behind all skills; which in turn is underpinned by…
  • Sense and Sensemaking – Observing our world, and making sense of what we see and experience within the world.

The latter being where much of my own work comes into the story, of course.

Helpful, I hope? Over to you for comments, anyway.

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2 comments on “Two acronyms: ENDS and MEANS
  1. Bernd says:

    Sorry Tom,

    these “definitions” are too broad for me.
    Please provide some context, otherwise it’s too quizzy, one size fits all, but without meaning again.

    • Tom G says:

      Fair enough, Bernd, though to me you’re perhaps taking this a bit too seriously? As I said in the lead-in, they’re a bit forced, they don’t claim to be ‘The Truth’ about anything, and they’re nothing special: they’re just there as quick checklists, that’s all – nothing more than that. They’ve proven useful to some folks in real-world practice, but if they’re not useful to you, don’t use ’em? – that would be my honest suggestion here.

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