Friday 10 February 2006

Aping a fantasy

Take control immediately
Just this afternoon, the long-running concern for my professional reputation was assuaged as the project came to an end.
Having decided to continue with the project, a number of things had to be clearly stated and agreed upon.
I was hired as a resource, I also happened to be an expert in the area of expertise I was resourcing and hence an authority.
Work already done by the supposed solutions architect was below par of a charlatan, it was necessary to completely eliminate interference in matters where the person evidently had no professional skill apart from bullshit - it frustrates projects.
This involved getting project manager to clearly state that I had the ascendant and pre-eminent technical expertise and all other ideas or suggestions should defer to mine.
Next, the relationship between organisation and their client was such that they reviewed all suggestions; first technically, then politically, failing which it just got emotional on the basis of gut feelings.
That untenable situation had to be arrested as it meant straight and reasonable technical activities received undue scrutiny that consequently delayed the progress of the project without commensurate accountability.
Punish ignorance with enlightenment
It meant every brick wall had to be mowed down with technical facts and reasoning one had to be apt at debunking of strange fallacies.
One usually asks why a particular action or solution was offered and then we debated the options towards persuading the actors to a different objective.
In this case, the simple answer was plain ignorance and lack of knowledge, things were done and suggested that had no technical or best practice basis in fact or reality.
Having cleared that away, work continued apace to setting in place my ideas, solution and implementation which was simplified through automation created by my colleague who had genius scripting skills.
Aping a fantasy
When the implementation was fully in place, we visited the client to conduct a battery of tests and to explain the thinking that went into our adaptation for their environment.
As one who usually challenges our every suggestion then said I had implemented the solution just as he would have done it.
I suppose, that is a complement if I ever got one; the idea that I had just implemented what they knew all along; pure and utter fantasy – I was just imitating the same.
The last day included a few finishing touches, handshakes, smiles and commiserations.
Next time, I will have a few more questions to ask before taking on a project. As for payday, that is still a long way off.
How did I ever get mixed up in this stuff?

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