Why Isn’t “The Process” Followed?

“We have a ticketing process for all of these things. Anything you do needs to go through that.”

The assumption is that, by going through a proper ticketing process, every request will be funneled through some sort of prioritizing and that that will minimize disruption.

Imagined scenario–total support/development time, 30 minutes:

  • Person needing a change to something files a ticket.
  • Magical “prioritization” takes place.
  • Technical worker executes in perfect order from off the queue.

Real attempt at following the process, 2 days:

  • Person needing a change contacts a random technical person.
  • Some effort to redirect or funnel through ticketing process is made.
  • Urgency communicated.
  • Another manager included on email chain, all the while missing managers who also need to be involved.
  • Random forwarding of emails to managers who also need to be involved.
  • Restart of the story from the beginning.
  • Someone else is left out of the loop.
  • .
  • .
  • .
  • Technical person takes care of what should have been a 30 minute task in the first place.


Time Bullshitting, Estimates Edition

What happens when people are given a new baseline for the amount of work expected on tasks for a given week:

People in Hell Want Ice Water

It is a known fact that employees don’t know what they want. They say they want ice machines to work, but they really want all the vending machines to be replaced with a brand new vending service that provides freshly prepared (sort of) items that you can purchase for grocery deli prices without leaving the building—because employees hate leaving the building and stuff.

So whenever an employee provides feedback, either anonymously or openly, they don’t know what they’re talking about.

Employees really want open office plans, fancy break rooms, and whimsical methods of celebrating what the hell they supposed to do anyway.

How Long Will This Simple Concept Take to Build?

How long does the business person asking for it think it will take? Double that.

Is there a model system that it is being compared to? Double your estimate again. Double your estimate again if it’s being compared to more than one system.

Is it the design going to undergo audits for standards or compliance? Add 50% for each.

Does Agile mean “work before requirements are figured out in a process that’s really Waterfall”? Add all the effort up until your last new specification to the end of the project timeline.

Is “concept” or “pilot” being used in the place of “live production product that will be expected to scale and configure from day 1”? Double your estimate again.

Congratulations! You now have a very conservative estimate for how much effort things will take.

RASMMAMSTCCHWE: Results And Some Mandatory Meetings And Make Sure To Cover Core Hours Work Environment

ROWE is awesome. We all believe in ROWE. All meetings are optional.

Except everyone has to attend the bi-monthly two hour update meeting.

But aside from that, ROWE is great. You can work anywhere.

Except that our online meeting software sucks, and this is an important meeting, so you really need to be on-site for it. (There are meetings for which we don’t care about the quality of the online meeting software? Why are we having those meetings?)

Other than that, you can work anywhere, at any time as long as the work gets done.

Except for core hours. You must work core hours.

Oh, Zojirushi 62 oz Coffee Carafe, You Make Me Very Angry

I guess my beef isn’t specifically with this coffee carafe, but I do take issue with the design of the carafe that makes my unfortunate circumstances that much more likely.

The problem with this carafe is that it’s hard to get coffee out of it once the first few ounces of coffee are gone. You have tilt the coffee pot on its side, and that’s where my trouble started.

There I was, trying to get coffee out of a one-third to one-half full coffee pot.

There (some indeterminate amount of time before) someone else was, barely screwing the lid on the carafe.

Back to the present, there I was, getting doused with coffee from a very well insulated pot as the lid came off.

If you see this carafe in your office, be very careful pouring your coffee, or even better… RUN AWAY.

#operationfreefood Day 4

Today, I secured my own provisions. To be frank, those provisions were better than any free food that I could have acquired at the office.

I had forgotten about the healthy rations (fruit cart) that were set up yesterday. The bananas were the first to disappear. That’s just as well, because they are usually overripe these days. They always came green in the winter time. Only a few bruised plums and apples are left, along with some sickly looking oranges.

I did discover, however, that a lone leftover bagel (plain) had been left behind by an unannounced offering of free food. Possibly due to the low reward vs. high personnel risk of injury that comes with announcing the free food.

Still a demoralizing day on the free food front, but a lone bagel represents hope.

#operationfreefood Day 2

Brought leftover rations from our trip into town this weekend. Hoping not to have to use them, but still waiting on word from Leftover Intelligence that food is available. Our late morning drills were fairly light, and we’ve actually had time for ample coffee drinking, so I may be able to reserve my rations for tougher times.

One thing about the coffee: I know that it is better than the standard issue coffee, but, it’s just that… I’ve been drinking it every day, and it just tastes awful now. Is it a product of the resentment of these conditions I find myself in, or is the coffee really that awful?


I tried to hold out but couldn’t. My rations had to be eaten.