JCI & Panoptix Internal Evangelism: Selling Not Just The API, But The Overall Approach Internally

I just had a great conversion with John Bernd (@jkbernd) and Simone Vigano (@viganosimone) of Johnson Controls (JCI), who lead efforts at the building efficiency API, Panoptix. They shared several great stories with me, I’ll trickle out over the next week, with the first one about internal evangelism.

Internal evangelism, whether your API is public or private, is something I’ve advocated for pretty heavily over the last few years. Lack of internal evangelism around an API can be the number on reason you get your API defunded within any size organization. Basically if the rest of the company, included your bosses , don’t know about your API and the success you’ve had, your done. So tell stories about your API.

This particular story out of JCI is particularly interesting because it isn’t just about evangelizing your API, its evangelizing your approach to delivering your API. Over the last couple years of the Panoptix API, John and Simone have done a great job evangelizing the Panoptix API internally (separate story coming soon), but somehow in the hustle they forgot to package up and sell their approach to delivering the Panoptix API, so other groups within JCI can learn about and put the API approach to use for their own needs.

Panoptix realized they need to document their own approach to designing, developing, deploying and managing the Panoptix API, create a case study that they can then evangelize within JCI. The benefits of separating data and resources, establishing self-service APIs, establishing meaningful metrics combined with analytics, and the overall health brought by an API centric approach, was something that every group within JCI needs to understand. Panoptix uses 3Scale API infrastructure, and has been reading API Evangelist for a couple years, resulting in their own unique approach to API delivery, you can experience within the Panoptix developer community.

Hearing John and Simone talk through their realization, made me see another layer to internal API evangelism. You shouldn’t just have a coherent API design, deployment, management and evangelism strategy so that you can execute on it, you should have one so that you can clearly articulate it to the rest of your company and help onboard them with your API centric approach to getting things done.

Disclosure: 3Scale is an API Evangelist partner