free html hit counter
Posted on: Saturday, January 2, 2010 by Rajiv Popat

At Multiplitaxion Inc; people are optimistic about everything that they do. Jack; a programmer sitting across in his is silently and quietly celebrating the fact that the organization has signed up a new project. My problem; dear reader; is my knowing that we do not have a sign off from a client yet.

How did he learn about the new client; I ask him hesitantly.

His manager told him; I am told.

I cringe; then I decide to keep my gob shut.

As someone who leads teams of programmers there is something you need to know about both good-news and bad-news. They spread; within the corridors of the organization. They spread in an uncontrolled manner; pretty much like an organizational wild fire that is rather painful to stop once it starts spreading.

To add to that; most managers that I have seen around the globe seem to have another problem. It is a problem with transmission of messages. Messages often change drastically when they move from managers to programmers.

A classic example for instance is: we 'might' sign off a really huge project next week becomes we 'will' sign off a really huge project next week.

What this means is that getting Jack in a room and telling him about a new deal that Multiplitaxion Inc 'might' sign off; will often mean that you end up telling him about a new deal Multiplitaxion Inc 'will' sign off.

When you do that as a manager what you are doing is adding a lethal dose of optimism and starting a wildfire. If you are one lucky son of a gun; the sign off will happen next week and the wildfire of happiness you started will do no harm.

If however; you are like most of us mere mortals; in most cases Murphy's Law will kick in; which simply put; means that if something can go wrong; it will. It is then; that you might find yourself indulging in a painful firefighting exercise.

Spread wildfires of happiness with optimism a couple of times and you have lost all confidence that people who work with you had in you.

As individuals who lead a team and as human beings in general; we crave to become the bearer of good news.

Obviously you love spreading Happy wildfires; but before you do; think.

Are you adding unnecessary elements of optimism to these happy wildfires? Are you creating happy wildfires which you might have to bring to painful a painful halt in future? Are your happy wildfire based on genuine confirmed good-news or are there elements of your personal wishful thinking?

If your good news has elements of personal optimism and wishful thinking attached to it; you be better off waiting a while before you light the wildfire. Hold off lighting the fire till you have a confirmation of good news and till you know deep down inside that there are no elements of personal optimism and wishful thinking involved in lighting the wildfire of happiness.

I wish you good luck.

Monday, January 4, 2010 12:15:09 AM UTC
Please stop abusing the semicolon! :-)

I'm no grammar expert but these would be better sentences:

His manager told him; I am told.
His manager told him, he says.

I cringe; then I decide to keep my gob shut.
I cringe then I decide to keep my gob shut.

They spread; within the corridors of the organization.
They spread within the corridors of the organization.

What this means is that getting Jack in a room and telling him about a new deal that Multiplitaxion Inc 'might' sign off; will often mean that you end up telling him about a new deal Multiplitaxion Inc 'will' sign off.
What this means is that getting Jack in a room and telling him about a new deal that Multiplitaxion Inc <i>might</i> sign off will often mean that you end up telling him about a new deal Multiplitaxion Inc <i>will</i> sign off.

Obviously you love spreading Happy wildfires; but before you do; think.
Obviously you love spreading happy wildfires, but think before you do.

If your good news has elements of personal optimism and wishful thinking attached to it; you be better off waiting a while before you light the wildfire.
If your good news has elements of personal optimism and wishful thinking attached to it, then you'd be better off waiting a while before you light the wildfire.
Sunday, January 10, 2010 11:35:18 PM UTC
@Mike,

The abuse on the poor semi-colon that you feel so sorry about, as you shall see from my recent posts, has been stopped.

Thanks to you and everyone else who kept gently nudging me to stop the use of semi-colons for being so persistent. :)
Sunday, January 10, 2010 11:36:30 PM UTC
@mike

The abuse on the poor semi-colon that you feel so sorry about, as you shall see from my recent posts, has been stopped.

Thanks to you and everyone else, who kept nudging me to stop the use of semi-colons, for being so persistent. :)
Name
E-mail
Home page

Comment (HTML not allowed)  

[Captcha]Enter the code shown (prevents robots):

Live Comment Preview