|We don't bite newbies here... much|
Heroics vs. Consistancy (was: Initiative....)by clintp (Curate)
|on Jul 08, 2002 at 01:54 UTC ( #180058=note: print w/replies, xml )||Need Help??|
I think as I get older I appreciate B's more than A's, only as far as his attitude of putting it off till Monday. Very few "demos" -- or jobs for that matter -- are worth a missed weekend with family in the great scheme of things.
Personally, my reaction on Friday at 4pm would have been to spend 30 minutes, even staying a wee bit late, doing a rough guesstimate of how long the task would take. (Any 1 or 2 day job can be first-approximated in half an hour by a skilled programmer.) If it would have taken *well* more than a day, I would have immediately stated such and told whoever ^* scheduled the "demo" to reschedule or get creative in their approach (mock-ups, artwork, flip-charts, handwaving, etc...) and offer to assist in scaling down the problem on Monday or other suggestions.
If it could be done in a day or so -- went home and enjoyed the weekend.
I may be jaded but wherever possible I advise against A-type heroics on the part of programmers, and strictly forbid the expectation of it from more senior management. It does extensive harm to the company, project, and the programmer in the long run. I've got a long lecture on the topic, but that'd be preaching to the choir here I think.
<salesrant> ^* The word "demo" implies "sales" of some kind. The pressure to give up one's weekends and engage in super-human efforts for the company's sales survival are tremendous indeed. Still I refuse, and comfort myself in the notions that 1. Poor planning on his part does not constitute an emergency on mine; 2. Sales is a high-turnover position in the first place their *personal* investment in the customer (or the company) often stops when the commission check is cashed; 3. The salesperson (or by his proxy) expressing the dire need to the software department is an expert in sales, this is just a different kind of pitch (work late!) to a different customer (you!); 4. If a salesperson *did* plan and allocated time for the demo to be crafted and yet either grossly misunderstood the nature of the problem or failed to consult those that did to the point that his sales demo was jeopardized should probably be allowed to fail and this performance noted to other management as an indication of incompetance as a salesman, inconsiderateness as a "team member", and possibly not understanding the product he's selling nearly well enough to hold the job he does...but might not for long. </salesrant>
In Section Meditations