Don’t Buy Ecosystem Integration and Other Jedi Mind Tricks

One spark starts a match, and one match lights many others. Ecosystem integration is set to start the next chain reaction in business, but it might take a bit of reverse psychology to get it started.

Welcome to the Think Tank with Frank Kenney

With decades of analyst and integration industry experience, Frank Kenney is a fountain of knowledge on all things tech. Now, he aims to share that awareness with you. Come back every other Thursday for your biweekly dose of thought leadership in this blog from one of technology’s most insightful thinkers and gain perspective on a variety of topics ranging from what’s happening in integration today to what’s on the horizon, poised to disrupt the integration space going forward.

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*Sigh.* I remember when my son was much younger, I was able to convince him to do quite a few things by telling him not to do them. I was a regular Obi-Wan.

“Oh, you’re not eating vegetables? More vegetables for Dad.” Every last pea would be eaten.

“Oh, you’re not going to take a bath? That’s great! I’d rather you didn’t anyway. Saves water for the plants.” I would have trouble getting him out of the tub.  

Reverse psychology. That simple. At least, until he figured out the whole dynamic of the thing.

Reverse psychology usually stops working for parents around the time their kids turn 7. It’s at this age the practice becomes totally useless. In hindsight, I find it interesting that on any occasion my son would try this method of coercion on his mother and me, we would remind him that we were too grown up to fall for his Jedi mind tricks.

“I have found the problem to the solution.” ―  Amit Abraham

Jump ahead to last week. I had a few friends tell me, “Don’t bother with your Instagram today.” Supposedly, the Kardashian clan’s latest drama involving one of their friends (besties) and cascading accusations of infidelity should be expected to dominate my feed, typically trite and tedious. I took a momentary pause to consider the warning. I mean, how would that daytime-soap, reality-television, tabloid-magazine, TMZ-style narrative end up on my Instagram feed? I don’t follow any of these famous-for-being-famous neo-celebrity big cheeses of shallow-dom. No. My follows include a few family members and Samuel L. Jackson. And I only follow Mr. Jackson because he once signed an autograph to me, “Pleasure to meet you m------f----r.”

It just didn’t make sense. So, I looked.

And I read about the story. And it was just about as interesting as I thought it would be. I won’t ever get that time back.

“If I had an hour to solve a problem I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” ― Albert Einstein

Then again, last week, I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts and they talked about the high-profile scare-de-jour – the Momo challenge. There was plenty of accompanying chat about the dangers to a susceptible youth, a ghoulish Japanese anime character, and eventually the appetite of a news media hungry for fright bait. It was the first I’d ever heard of it.

My son never said anything to me about it, and it wasn’t on my Twitter feed or in any of my subreddits. Yet, right then, while flipping through the New York Times looking for the daily crossword puzzle, I came across an article about the Momo challenge and how it was unsurprisingly all a hoax.

There was no Momo challenge. It wasn’t real. Yep, nothing to see here.

And of course, the next stop:

Momo challenge

Nightmare fuel. What a disturbing picture! And in the end, just as interesting as I expected it would be; won’t get that time back.

“You're either part of the solution or you're part of the problem.” ― Eldridge Cleaver

I realize that modern society in conjunction with broad access to technology has started to make us again vulnerable to reverse psychology.

But, after last week, I realize that I too am back to being six-and-a-half once again.

The combination of reverse psychology and the Streisand effect makes us click through – even when we know deep down there’s probably very little nutritional value in the information on the other end of that Google search. And keep in mind, its information that is designed to intrigue. Someone out there wants us to consider it. Like a classic horror movie trailer, that deep bass-y tone of the voice-over artist would forewarn, “This movie is not suitable for anyone with heart conditions or pregnant women.” Well, then you have to see it, don’t you? If only to find out what could be so frightening and dangerous.

Slowly but surely, this is becoming the new norm. The days of just saying that the cool kids are doing it are not enough. It’s much easier to say, “You probably wouldn’t understand it.” Or, “It’s not for you.”

That’s working wonders.

The one thing better than getting something that you want is getting something we were told we shouldn’t have.

“Technology can be part of a solution, but it takes far more than software to usher in reform.” ―  Jenna Wortham

So, my message in this week’s blog is a really simple one:

“Don’t buy ecosystem integration.” ―  Frank Kenney

“Trust me. You don’t want the enhancements that ecosystem integration will bring your business. And forget about the ability to accelerate growth, launch new revenue streams, and create new value for your customers through ecosystem integration capabilities. You’ll be fine without these clear competitive advantages. These are not the strategies you are looking for.”

Did that work? Just in case, I’ll include a link to all things ecosystem integration right here:

https://www.cleo.com/search?keywords=ecosystem+integration

P.S. A reminder that Samuel L. Jackson was also a Jedi. (But don't look that up...)

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About Frank Kenney

A former Gartner analyst and current market evangelist and strategy director, Frank Kenney is widely credited as the creator of the term managed file transfer (MFT) and was the first to write about and discuss its modern architecture, platform, and use cases. Previously, Frank served more than 10 years as a research director at Gartner, where he defined the MFT, B2B gateway, SOA governance, and cloud service brokerage (CSB) markets.