Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Channeling Dilbert

Last Monday...
Program manager: We promised our client feature X, and discovered it doesn't work. How come?
My team: Um, because you never told us about it?
PM: Ok, well, we're really in a bind here. How soon can you do this?
Us, grumbling... Well, let's see. If we stop everything we're doing and put Dave on the task, we can hit August 9th with 80% confidence.
PM: Hm... how about August 2nd?
Us: Not really, that's awfully tight. We might pull it off, but there's less than a 50/50 chance. You should tell [client] August 9th.
PM: Well, ok. August 9th it is.

Last Wednesday...
Me: Ok, I've gotten the changes made and have a sample available on my desktop. Can someone verify this?
Other teams: Hm... there are a few issues we didn't expect as a result of this. Can you fix those, too?
Me: Ok, I'll look into them.

This past weekend...
Me: Issues resolved. Can you re-run your tests?
Me: Hello? Hello?

Other teams: Yeah, ok, verified that the issues are resolved. Thanks for working on this over the weekend, even though we weren't willing to sacrifice our free time to help with this urgent feature we needed.

PM: Why isn't this out to QA yet?!!
Us: Um, because today's the 26th, and we're still packaging things up to get it to them by Friday.
PM: But... but... you can't! You have to do it today!!!11!1one!!eleven!!!
Us: Why?
PM: Because it has to be out by August 2nd!
Us: No... we told you August 9th. August 2nd was if a miracle happened.
PM: But... but... it did! You got it working already! And I sorta promised it to [client] then.
We fume, steam comes out our ears, etc.
My manager, cc'ing our VP: Gee, that's too bad. Good luck explaining that to [client].

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