Archive for September, 2003
ManagementSpeak: We believe in employee empowerment. Translation: I want to be able to blame our employees for my mistakes. MS: We have to follow the methodology. T: I want to be able to blame the system for my mistakes. MS: We always involve the users. T: I want to be able to blame the users […]
Management and leadership are, as has been mentioned once or twice, different. Precisely how they differ is a matter of some controversy, and quite a lot of ink has been spilled arguing what exactly distinguishes the two. There has been somewhat less discussion of which is the more important, possibly because the answer is so […]
ManagementSpeak: My department will go the extra mile to complete a project on time. Translation: I promised more than we can deliver on any normal human schedule, so everyone should show up all weekend, or don’t bother coming in on Monday. This week’s anonymous contributor delivered on her promises by providing us with an accurate […]
Pessimists, we’re told, look at a glass containing 50% air and 50% water and see it as half empty. Optimists, in contrast, see it as half full. Engineers, of course, understand the glass is twice as big as it needs to be. Which explains a major source of friction in IT-related projects: Different umwelts. Umwelt […]
ManagementSpeak: We’re launching a quick win effort. Translation: If I don’t deliver results soon, I’m fired. This week’s contributor delivered a solid result … for us, at least.
It’s scandal time! Your intrepid reporter has uncovered an outrage of major proportions: Not one of the major ERP suites … not SAP, not PeopleSoft, nor Oracle … scales effectively. It’s true! Oh, they scale up just fine. I’m sure there’s some level of organizational size and scale where they break, but I don’t know […]
ManagementSpeak: Ours is a dynamic business and they need to understand it. Translation: We don’t care if anything gets finished. We just care that everything is urgent. Thanks to this week’s anonymous contributor for a dynamic translation.
“Feedback” is a rare word: Even though it’s widely used in business it hasn’t entirely lost its original meaning. Among engineers, feedback (more precisely, negative feedback) is an essential component of control theory: Adding the inverted output of a system to its inputs stabilizes the system’s ability to track changes in input values. The equations […]
ManagementSpeak: Don’t spend more than ten minutes on it. Translation: Do it in your own time. KJR Club Member Mike Baxter translated this for us in his own time.
Long-time reader William Yohman points out a non-technical pitfall common to many end-user-developed IT applications: “I developed dozens of applications, templates and procedures that were ‘the next best thing.’ I then trained the other users in my work center on their use (and how it would save them time) only to find out the momentum […]