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Archive for the ‘work’ Category

A Few Good Things

There are a few things about the company I’m under contract with that I like. There is free tea, coffee, and hot chocolate, along with filtered water. The people I’ve met in other departments are friendly and engaging. There are many women in key positions. And there a quite a few blind employees. Previously, I’ve only worked with one blind person. At this firm, I’ve encountered at least eight blind employees. Oddly, all of them have been men.

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Screw The Customer

It has become apparent my client is more concerned with meeting deadlines than providing a quality product to customers. At times, software defects are deemed unimportant or insignificant in order to publish a new software release on time. Defects impacting the customer experience are pushed to a future release in order to meet a deadline. I’m guessing the compensation structure is based on meeting project milestones, and not, the number of problems that are a resolved or new features introduced. It’s discouraging to know that a consistent or quality customer experience is not important.

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Missing A Deadline

Last week, a new project was given to my team. My manager issued an edict directing the team to finish the project by December 4th. My manager never bothered to brief the team on the project requirements. It was discovered that key data is missing to complete the project. The team responsible for obtaining the data has a response time of two weeks. Today is December 4th. The deadline will be missed, which, will jeopardize a planned launch on December 11th.

 
I like my manager. She’s a really nice person. She’s just not an effective manager and lacks organizational skills. Rumors are circulating about a consultant replacing my manager, who, in turn, will be moved into a team leader position. That may be best for all parties involved.

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The Belts

Why do the majority of the Indian men in my office wear belts that are too long? Some wear belts that almost circle their body twice. Is this some type of fashion-forward trend coming out of India? Can anyone explain this odd phenomenon?

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Wasting Money

Today marks the third day this week I’ve had almost nothing to do. At best, only twenty percent of my day is spent actually working. The rest of the day I sit around waiting for deliverables. I’m not alone. I have a shared experience with consultants from other firms in the office. The general consensus is the department is horribly mismanaged. The salary expense for the consultants on my team is probably in excess of $10,000 a day. It’s no wonder the company made less than $4b of profit on revenues of $30b.

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Marginally Better

Two new consultants arrived last week who will replace two departing team members. It appears the new consulting firm’s people are only marginally better than the two leaving. Their written communication skills have already proven to be lacking. One has taken over the task of creating a daily report which outlines the team’s project progress. The report migrated from a simple one-page email to a four-page PowerPoint presentation with charts and graphs. It was serious overkill. The team manager instructed the new consultant to return to the previous format since a PowerPoint presentation was a waste of time. WF and I had instructed the new consultant to stick the original format but she elected not the take our advice. No additional advice will be offered to her going forward.

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Wasting Time

My current project at work has a short execution window. The team lead provided the project documentation. WF and I have been partnered to bang this one out. Excellent progress was being made. A new project scope was sent out this morning. Most of the deliverables were cut from the project. WF and I essentially wasted three days working on tasks that are no longer part of the project. With only one small task left to complete which requires clarification from the product management, we’ve been sitting around with nothing to do. The other team members declined our offer of assistance on their projects. What the hell is wrong with this company? Miscommunication, confusion and inefficiency seen to be essential components of the company culture.

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