Category Archives: Technology & Organizations

What does this paper mean?

hwms.coverart
 You don’t, and that”s the point.  
It’s the contract that holds you together. Not your history. Not your friendship. Not anything else.

The contract. Offer. Acceptance. Consideration. That’s it.

And what does that paper mean when things start moving fast, when you jump from one meeting to the next?

And what does it mean when the client, or perhaps a representative of the client, has ideas? Where does the contract end?

Fourth episode in a series on the ins and outs of tech consulting.

Cast:

  • Kit, Chief Consultant  – Kit Kuksenok
  • Evelyn, The Business Manager – Margaux Amie
  • Anna the intern  – Sarah Corbyn Woolf
  • Sonya, the head of operations – Debbon Ayer
  • Vinny, the CTO – Geoffrey Grier
  • Aravinda, our Attorney – Sahara Ale

[18330]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Do you Indeed?

hwms.coverart
 You don’t, and that”s the point.  

None of know what we are doing when we going into a new organization.  We don’t know the history.  We don’t know the power structure.  Sometimes, we don’t even know the goals.  (And this will lead us to one of the key questions of this series: “Who are Leena and Klara?”)  Occasionally , we don’t even know ourselves. 

Our podcast consulting team has beens starting work in Hamburg.  Anna’s replacing a key staff member and thinking about the future.  Trouble is, she does not know all that the client is thinking and might not know what to do if she did.

Second episode in a series on the ins and outs of tech consulting.

Cast:

  • Kit, Chief Consultant  – Kit Kuksenok
  • Evelyn, The Business Manager – Margaux Amie
  • Anna the intern  – Sarah Corbyn Woolf
  • Dirk, the Tech Guy – Noah Masur
  • Rohit, the Other Tech Guy – Noah Masur
  • Florian, the Client  – Josh LaForce
  • Sonya, the head of operations – Debbon Ayer
  • Vinny, the CTO – Geoffrey Grier

[18325]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

The Reckoning

hwms.coverartThe arc comes to a close, even though the issues remain open.   At some point, the board has to make a decision – Take the path to the right, Take the path to the left, or Stand in the middle of the road, (which is a decision unto itself.)

Vinny’s board has taken the “maximize immediate return on investment” path, which was the obvious choice once they understood the situation.  The decision brings the SidePocket story to a close because there is no more SidePocket to discuss.  However, it leaves at least on human open, unresolved and visible for all to see.

Cast:

  • Maddie, the young entrepreneur  – Zoe Anastassiou
  • Vinny, the CEO of SidePocket – Geoffrey Grier
  • Molly of SidePocket – Caraid O’Brien
  • Thomas of IBM – Ron Bianchi
  • Carl of G&P – Josh LaForce
  • Jessie, formerly of SidePocket – Sahara Ale
  • San, a mover – Ron Bianchi
  • Julio, a mover – Jake Minevich

[18150]

The Corporate Goddesses

In this episode a pair of movers debate the meaning of a series of statues that are commonly called “The Corporate Goddesses”.   These statues are mounted on the top of 860 California Street in San Francisco’s Financial District.  They were done by sculptor  Muriel Castanis (1926-2006).   From a distance they appear to be draped female figures but closer inspection reveals that they are only the draping without faces or figures.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Challenging the Board

hwms.coverartIt’s not a typical employee relationship – CEO and Board.

Sure, there’s an employee contract but it hardly covers all the circumstances of the job.

Vinny, the CEO of SidePocket, has concluded that his board is out of step with the software market and that he needs to take firm steps to show them a good strategy.  These steps will put him in conflict with the board, but it is an uncertain conflict.  He’s not directly disobedient.  Yet, he is not following the board strategy either.

Cast:

  • Maddie, the young entrepreneur  – Zoe Anastassiou
  • Vinny, the CEO of SidePocket – Geoffrey Grier
  • Molly of SidePocket – Caraid O’Brien
  • Thomas of IBM – Ron Bianchi
  • Karen the Banker – Debbon Ayer
  • Carl of G&P – Josh LaForce

[18145]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Tech, Money, Betrayal & Bad Driving

hwms.coverartThings are never as clear as they seem.  Never as obvious.  Never as straightforward as you would like.

It should be simple.  You get an idea.  You make a product.  You take it to the market.  Let your customers decide for good or for ill.

But that simplicity masks the fundamental conflict.  A conflict over goals.  A conflict that is often deeply hidden in the acts and decisions of daily life.

Cast members Caraid O’Brien and Josh LaForce talk about the current series of the podcast and the challenges of preparing a podcast while driving through the streets of San Jose, California.

 

Cast:

  • Molly of SidePocket – Caraid O’Brien
  • Carl of G&P – Josh LaForce

[18142]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

To Make A Point

hwms.coverartSometimes talk doesn’t work.

You’ve argued your case again and again. They hear your points, concede your argument but don’t accept your conclusion.

What do you do? And when do you do it?

And perhaps most importantly, what do you tell yourself about the risk involved? A key moment in the development of SidePocket.

Cast:

  • Maddie the 8-year-old Entrepreneur – Zoe Anastassiou
  • Vinny the CTO – Geoffrey Grier
  • Molly of SidePocket – Caraid O’Brien
  • Carl of G&P – Josh LaForce
  • Jim or Kim or Tim – Ron Bianchi
  • Violet of Marketing – Margaux Amie

[18140]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Success & Temptation

hwms.coverart

What’s success?  A million a month? A million a month in revenue for a young software firm? (Remember, this story comes from the 1990s, Podcastland.) It’s not a bad start.

But what do you do with success? Throw a party? Lease a new office building? Build your technical staff? Listen to your board and take a stab at controlling the market?

Such is the problem faced by Vinny, the CEO of SidePocket. He doesn’t know what path to take even with the siren call of temptation sweeps through the air.

 

Cast:

  • Maddie the 8-year-old Entrepreneur – Zoe Anastassiou
  • Vinny the CTO – Geoffrey Grier
  • Molly of SidePocket – Caraid O’Brien
  • Carl of G&P – Josh LaForce
  • Rick at the Converence – Ron Bianchi
  • Karen from CalFed – Debbon Ayer

[18135]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Stories about Tech Governance

hwms.coverartTechnology & Governance?  What’s the big deal?  It’s just politics.  Right?

And why are we doing it with stories?  Why can’t we just give you the PowerPoints and be done with it?

Because Tech Governance is a key part of our age.  Without it, you don’t get the new products, the new services, the new tools, the new ideas.

By why stories?

Because you only learn this stuff by living it.  And if you can’t live it yourself, you can at least eavesdrop to someone who is living with those lessons and get the benefits of their experience.

A mid-series overview of the podcast.

Cast:

  • Maddie the 8-year-old Entrepreneur – Zoe Anastassiou
  • Vinny the CTO – Geoffrey Grier
  • Jessie of SidePocket – Sahara Ale
  • Rick of SidePocket – Noah Masur
  • Molly of SidePocket – Caraid O’Brien
  • Carl of G&P – Josh LaForce
  • Violet from Marketting – Margaux Amie
  • Dennis of Toolcart – Jake Minevich
  • Rick at the Converence – Ron Bianchi
  • Karen from CalFed – Debbon Ayer

[18132]

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail