One of the things that I liked about working as a grad student researcher was you always knew when the data was due. It was the end of a quarter for a class project. It was for a paper deadline. Well established deadlines existed. Yes, sometimes those deadlines made for late nights and no weekends, but there was also some security in that, too.
The data is always due in the corporate world. You want it when? Yesterday? I'm sorry, that doesn't fit with our testing roadmap. We have data to collect for these five other projects first. So, if you want it yesterday, you have to explain to us why we should re-prioritize.
The quality of the data suffers as a result. We seem to be making decisions all the time... and I'm finding lately that those decisions are coming back to haunt us. We're groping around in the dark; we make so many decisions without much time to think about what they mean.
We then tell people about the data, including upper management... and they get upset when we go back and say "Oh sorry, we have to restate things."
There are, of course, some good reasons for the poor quality of our decisions. A good workman never blames his tools, but... when lousy tools that you don't always understand are all you have, quality will not always be want you want. That really bugs me.
I hate that we have to keep restating things. I need to be able to do a better job of being able to step out of the moment. I need to take in the bigger picture. I usually get so stuck in the moment, a few paragraphs worth of words come tumbling out of my mouth before I'm able to sum up and say something meaningful.
I guess this is why I often prefer the written word... you can edit.
I need to remember that everyone else is struggling along in the darkness too. I am not the only one. I just need to figure out how to light a candle.
on 2005-10-21 at 10:12 p.m.
The Wayback Machine - To Infinity And Beyond