“The Middle Way”: Finding the Golden Mean for Cloud Optimization

Across the world and across time, the wisest humans have sung the praises of the “golden mean”: the middle path between two extremes.


  • In ancient Greece, “Nothing in excess” was carved into the temple of Delphi.
  • Socrates taught us to “choose the mean and avoid the extremes on either side.”
  • Aristotle made the concept of the golden mean the cornerstone of his ethics.
  • Farther to the east, Buddha propounded a “middle way” between asceticism and sensual indulgence.
  • In China, Confucius taught the Doctrine of the Mean, and compared excess to deficiency.


The same concept of the golden mean, or middle path, can be used to approach cloud migration.


The “Middle Way” to Cloud Optimization


In a recent survey, 90% of senior decision-makers agreed that the cloud is a “force multiplier” for businesses and organizations. But the survey also revealed an “innovation gap.” In other words, many companies are not getting what they expected out of their investment in the cloud.


Why is this occurring?


One reason is that many leaders try to force the move to the cloud, expecting transformational change all at once. When this doesn’t happen, tech teams can feel stuck and frustrated. But—and here’s the key—transformation doesn’t need to be an “all or nothing” proposition. By examining your systems bit by bit, you can prioritize migration, making the process manageable and effective. We call this the “Middle Way”—a practical, achievable plan for transforming your applications in manageable stages.


Determining Your “Why”


The first step along this middle path is to determine your unique “why.” Before you can prioritize which individual applications to start with, you need to be clear about why you

want to optimize in the first place. Is it to provide enhanced security and reduce lag times? To use data to drive decision-making? Or will it enable you to provide a better product line, giving you a technical edge over your competitors?


Once your team aligns on your technical and organizational motivations, you can prioritize migrating applications that serve your organization’s best interest, rather than optimization for optimization’s sake. This will prevent the frustration that comes from trying to do too much at once, turning it instead into a more fluid, “Zen” process—as the philosophers advise.


Understanding your “why” is only the first of four steps in finding the Middle Way to the cloud. To learn the next three, and how to apply them, check out our free e-book, The Middle Way: A New, Actionable Method for Cloud Optimization.


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