Peet Brits

Hmm, but that doesn't make any sense…

Who’s the Boss?

Posted by Peet Brits on August 30, 2008


[Article related not just to the IT industry, but most companies in general]

The Big Boss

The Big Boss

In some companies there seem to be continual strive between employees, managers, and even clients.  Everyone has got their own opinion.  To a certain degree they are all right, but only one can have the last say.

If your company makes the client your boss, then you will always be trailing behind in the wake of complaints, non-important things and sometimes other badly thought out ideas.

You want to lead to market!

Note that I am not saying that the client should be ignored.  He is after all responsible for the cash flow.  A policy stating that “the client is always right” is absolutely required, but always in context.  Value the client’s opinion.  Treat them as if they are the be all and end all.  Just do not forget who the real “big boss” is behind the scenes.

Strive for excellence

The purpose of any respectable company is to make the life of the client better and easier, even if that means changing the way the client does things.

Usually this type of change will not be welcomed by management, due to time, money and other restraints, but if the product your company has to offer really is that great then it is worth at least trying to pursue an ideal.  Now if something is not broken, do not fix it, but a lot of times the reason for keeping things the same is because that is the way it has been done for so many years and everybody is just too lazy to touch the topic.

A lot of times people only care about what they gain today.  They do not always have the foresight to realise that a bit of effort will in fact make life more efficient, meaning more time and money in their pockets over the long run.

IF NOT

If you compromise on quality, eventually things are going to break.  The client is going to blame the product.  The company could try to defend itself with words like “but you asked for it to be like this”, but that will just anger the client.  Whatever comes from this, the company is getting bad publicity.  Since the company has to continue the “client is always right” mentality they now have to promise a fix which will just end up as a bad “hack” and make matters worse for future upgrades.

Example

Client: “Do it like this.”
Certain employees striving for excellence: “This is not a good idea because…”
Manager: “Be quiet.  You are not paid to think about this, just make it work!”

YOU ARE CHOPPING OFF THEIR HANDS!!!

So stop blaming or laying down the employees if things go bad in the future.  You can throw all your fancy management processes out of the window.

You brought it upon yourself.

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