Why microservices need pessimists

Instead of holding microservices projects back, pessimists may be the only chance of making sure the projects don’t spin out of control.

Ann Marie Bond Ann Marie Bond

As agility becomes the new transformation buzzword, microservices are having their moment in the sun.

With success stories like Netflix and Google, businesses of every size are looking at microservices initiatives. Business leaders are buzzing with excitement for microservices. Indeed, they bring them up in meetings and put them into presentations as the panacea for all business problems. But the real problem is that they often don’t fully understand what they mean, what they do or how complicated they can be.

But IT managers are a bit wiser. They recognize the potential benefits, but also the potential flaws. They realize that without being properly managed, microservices run the risk of becoming a disorganized, tangled mess of connections like the spaghetti code of the early 2000’s. They realize that while distributing solutions across a microservices architecture may happen in a snap, issues and vulnerabilities can creep in just as easily.

Flying high in the hype cycle

Put in the context of the Gartner hype cycle, business managers are flying high in the “Peak of Inflated Expectations,” while IT managers are working their way out of the “Trough of Disillusionment.”

The problem is that when IT managers inject a dose of reality into business leader expectations, they are often accused of being pessimists. But is that really that case? Instead, they may be the pragmatists, the realists. Instead of holding microservices projects back, they may be the only chance of making sure those projects don’t spin out of control.

(In fact, keeping microservices under control is so hard and so important that you may need an entire platform to manage them.)

So, call them pessimists if you must – but they are the heroes of the story, not the villains. They ride in on their sensible grey mares to save the day.

To help these heroes get the credit that they deserve, there’s a new e-book that acts as a guide to having productive conversations about what microservices can realistically do, and how to think about them in a more pragmatic way.

The guide tackles common hype-driven promises, such as how microservices can: transform business models overnight, allow legacy companies to suddenly react to market conditions, or secure data like never before.

So, if you are an IT manager, give it a read so you can push conversations in the right direction without being called a stick-in-the-mud. And if you’re a business manager, take a look to learn how set the right expectations of what microservices can deliver.