Teh Squeaky Wheel
Sunday greetings from cool, drizzly yet Happy Larryville, GN!
As if any of us needed further convincing that My Little Pony™ is ineffably evil, here’s Matt Labash’s account of a BronyCon:
In the near future, historians will struggle to locate the precise moment when civilization’s wheels finally, irretrievably came off. By then, there will have been too many such moments to pinpoint one with any certainty. But I’ll mark the day as having occurred on a recent August weekend when, standing in the concourse of the Baltimore Convention Center, I watch grown men with problem skin and five o’clock shadows prance around in pony ears, rainbow manes, and braided tails lashed to their belt-loops, doling out “free hugs,” starting “fun! fun! fun!” chants, and spontaneously breaking into song. “Give me a bro hoof,” says one, trying to knuckle-bump me. It’s what you might imagine heaven to be like, if your idea of heaven is hell.
Warning: The link is not appropriate for the faint of sphincter. 😉
“But Bronies represent a novel variation on the theme: Like so many American men, they wish to be forever suspended in childhood. Except this time, they want to be 6-year-old girls.”
Uh, a little creepy. On the other hand, it’s good that lonely odd folks with strange beliefs/interests, few friends, and no social skills can find others with similar interests and develop friendships. Maybe it’s a first step out of the basement and into a normal life.
I’m surprised they didnt hold this event in Enumclaw if you know what I mean.
A blessed Sabbath, Gerbil Nation!
That’s it. I got nuthin’.
I’m puzzling over today’s Gospel-Luke 12: 49-53, but I also have to make breakfast.
Interesting Gospel, Sven. Was that discussed in church today? What did the minister say about it?
Yeah, that was today’s Gospel reading. The priest’s take on it was that it is more metaphorical than literal.
Here’s your choice: accept God or don’t, but standing on the sidelines is no longer an option. The battles spoken of are that of the heart and soul rather than more literal physical battles between persons of conflicting viewpoints.
It’s a puzzling one to me and requires more thought and reading on my part. The language is clear enough, but there seemed to be more of an effort by the priest to twist the words into something, that on first reading, doesnt appear to be there.
I started re-reading Eli Goldratt’s book, The Goal, yesterday. For those of you unfamiliar with it, it was a big deal in materials management back in the 80’s when it was first published.
I was sitting in a staff meeting Thursday where we make a big deal out of posting and tallying our ‘wins’ each week. Much high-fiving over things like 20 patches applied, 500 lines of code written, installed three new applications, etc. And I’m sitting there thinking, so what? I was in ‘so what’ mode, but not quite sure why, and then mulling things over, I got to wondering how each one of these ‘wins’ helped out the company--which got me to thinking about measuring the efficiency of individual work centers while ignoring the company’s goals and measuring progress towards that. I was also wondering why we tally wins, but say nothing about losses like the five order entry outages that occurred that cost the company maybe a quarter-million bucks.
Not quite sure where I’ll go with this, but it’s enjoyable reading anyhow.
Hidden Hills is on fire--tanker plane overhead. Not seeing anything on the news about it, so maybe no big deal. Selfishly, that’s south of us so not a worry.
When I moved from Receiving to managing the operation at Lee Meyers company I estimated that 20% to 25% of the effort was being consumed in interdepartmental fighting. Nobody had come up with a way to determine real operational costs in a way that would let them make an objective evaluation of the net benefit when a change cost one department to help another, so everything was seat of the pants and the department manager who had the connection or caught the boss in the right mood won the issue.
They did not want me to develop a system that would let me rate my departments as they had grand plans for some system that would cover the whole company but the senior manager that was to develop that system was unable to delegate and was already a bottleneck on day to day operations and would never be able to do it (and wasn’t) so I made my own, suited to my needs. With such waste it was easy to make a large gain in productivity just by getting the current level of effort pulling in the same direction so my star was high and I had the credibility to break the “We have always done it that way” clog on progress. This led to more improvements and got me a much freer hand. They did not understand how I got results with methods they thought were wrong but the results were obvious in productivity, profit, accuracy, moral, turnover and safety. All this while people were paid more and got more benefits than was ever possible before. They wanted more and each year they got it so I had a lot of pull.
So many people in upper management just have no clue about getting the most from people and how to set proper goals for the company. The first two principles of warfare are objective and offensive. To win you must know what victory is, what you want to achieve, and you must move toward it. It seems so obvious but so many miss it in the clutter of local struggles as you describe. The owner once said how happy he was with one of the department managers because he was always hustling. He was surprised when he learned I was planning to get on his case for it. A good manager prevents fires rather than running around putting them out. It sounds like they are being consumed by those fires.
Yeah, these folks where I am at are constantly in fire suppression and crisis mode: the solution so far is to hire more people so that they can better put out the fires.
Behind the scenes, there’s apparently a grand scheme to reorganize and do things ‘differently’. But what I’ve learned is that there have been several such grand schemes in the past 6 years, none of which have reached fruition. None of the architects of these grand plans are still employed here.
In this case, I’m not an analyst nor am I consultant. I could just sit back, do my job, collect a paycheck. On the other hand, I have that urge to question it all, propose some changes, gadfly a bit. That urge will likely win out over prudence and a paycheck.
This IT group has 85 people now with open reqs for a dozen more. Half of us weren’t here a year ago. One feller that I had developed a relationship and who was quite good at responding to my questions and proactively supplying materials to me before I asked for them, well, he got fired last week. I was in a meeting where he quite strongly urged for the tools that would allow him and his group to proactively find problems. Was that the reason he was let go? Who knows.
It’s a strange company, but not any stranger than any other place I’ve been in the last 30 years.
You are fighting the good fight. Good luck!!