Re: Thoughts on working WITH developers...

Subject: Re: Thoughts on working WITH developers...
From: "Meek, DavidX L" <davidx -dot- l -dot- meek -at- INTEL -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 25 Mar 1999 14:13:30 -0800

>>>
Eric Ray wrote:

Hmmm...that's possibly true, but using working
with techniques, I've rarely had to be confrontational,
and never deceptive or tricky.
>>>

I've never had to be deceptive, tricky, or confrontational. In the main,
I've been extremely fortunate (or maybe the first impression I've made tends
*not* to be that of someone who is deceptive, tricky, or confrontational).
There have been occasions, however, in which I have encountered
less-than-helpful SMEs.

One case that stands out in my mind is a programmer who insisted I was too
ignorant to understand him. Rather than get into a word-war with him, I
exposed this falsehood by "interviewing" him via e-mail, and by e-mailing
him a summary of our face-to-face meetings (just to ensure that I had not
"misunderstood" him). When next he paraded out his weary excuse, I had
text, written by or agreed upon by him, that proved otherwise. The
misunderstandings soon vanished.

I have experienced a smattering of similar episodes, and the two constants I
have seen are:

*The "I'm busy" syndrome. Hey, I'm busy too! If I weren't, I'd probably
not have my job. My response to this excuse is usually a jocular, "Aren't
we all."

*Continued problems are often a management issue. I do my best to get
information from the SMEs in a manner that impacts their work the least. I
call; I e-mail; I call again; I e-mail again. I keep track of my attempts,
and I keep my management informed of my work through weekly status reports.
One of the items in my report is an "issues" section in which I report that
I'm still awaiting feedback from x, y, and z. It's not my job to get
information by hook or by crook. It's my job to make a *reasonable*
attempt, and then to let management know of my progress. It's management's
job to keep things flowing.

Dave
(Any statements made above are mine, and mine alone.)


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