Hasta la Victoria Siempre, GDS! This is not the end, no way

Bracken falls, but the fight for Agile Digital Transformation must go on


Before Bracken, citizens lived in a kind of digital darkness. Now, empowered by digital-by-default Agile services, they can enjoy all the benefits of a dedicated UX studio. There isn’t space here to list all the high points, but here are a few:

  • GDS’s Agile showcase was such a success, that farmers have even migrated to pencil and paper.

  • The identity system Verify has been so successful, every department has been inspired to create its own version. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?

  • GDS dispensed with so-called “Experts” because they only tell you when things are going wrong. Out with negativity! Out with the old!

    expertise is a hindrance – GDS

The future of GDS is assured, as its masterful and very well-thought-out strategy with far-sighted piles of wood software looks like this:

Now I know what you’re thinking. How on earth could a globally-renowned success story like GDS have any critics? How could Mike Bracken have created any enemies?

There is no rational explanation – which leaves only one option. An irrational explanation. We need to invent the biggest conspiracy theory Whitehall has ever seen to explain it.

My assistant มาลัย (which means “Garland of Flowers” in Thai) tells me that “Sir Nevile” is actually a pseudonym for the founder of an IT services supplier (William Heath) “who is an important partner for GOV.UK Verify” and therefore a completely unbiased observer.

And I agree.

The GDS team’s radical user-centric Javascript and design skills posed a threat to huge powerful interests across the world.

Ultimately, Comrade Bracken was stabbed in the back by a shadowy alliance of IT outsourcers, mandarins, the Battenberg Group, followers of the Internet Protocols of the Elders of Zion, shapeshifting alien greys, CapGemini and the freemasons. Who else do you think stands to benefit?

These are dark days for any multi-skilled Agile digital transformation specialist. The only hope is: GDS has inspired so many others, in so many countries, that his self-sacrifice will not be in vain. ®

Steve Bong (official title: Lord Bong of #businessmodel) is the founder of Bong Ventures, an early stage investor and incubator focussing on innovative new technology start-ups based in Shoreditch, London. When he's not helping rear the next generation of business models, Steve enjoys parties and foreign travel, extreme cuisine, Open Data and draws his inspiration from Ayn Rand and His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. He advised (then hired) No.10 policy guru Rohan Silva on mindfulness and innovation, Lily Cole on innovation in giving, Mark Zuckerberg on the Perfect IPO, the Republic of Kazakhstan on emergent social media strategies, LOCOG on brand enforcement, and imagineered the Olympic Opening Ceremony with Danny Boyle, Shoreditch's #guardian coffee coffee shop with Jemima Kiss, and was the social media consultant for Edward Snowden and Lady Thatcher’s Funeral. A recent attempt to arm the Syrian rebels with iOS7 sadly failed, however. He emphatically declined to assist the Islamic Caliphate in creating viral and engaging content.


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