Tag Archives: Debbon Ayer

When the Client Leaves the Premises

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 You don’t, and that”s the point.  

We have a company. We have a consulting team. And we believe we have a client, though it would seem that the client is not sure that he would have us. Days after the HWMS team arrived at BKL, it’s owner decided to go hiking in the Swiss Alps. It could be the confidence of a secure leader. It could be a brilliant strategy to get a new perspective on the business. It could also be a poor choice by a misguided manager. We take a moment to get the owner’s point of view as he walks with his friends in the Alps.

A short episode to give us a little insight into the challenges of tech consulting.

Cast:

  • Florian, the Client  – Josh LaForce
  • Ida, Friend of Florian  – Debbon Ayer
  • Max, Friend of Florian – Jake Minevich

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Do you Indeed?

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 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

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The Beginning is Chaos: Starting to Consult

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How do you begin a consulting job?

In thunder, lightening or in rain?

It is chaotic at the start. You move to new offices, meet new people and start to appreciate new responsibilities. Our podcast has been hired by a German firm – a logistics provider to the coffee industry – to review their software systems and make recommendations. They arrive on site, after a long flight, and quickly discover that they did not fully appreciate the environment in which they would have to work.

First episode in a series on 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
  • Florian, the Client  – Josh LaForce
  • Sonya, the head of operations – Debbon Ayer

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A Series on Consulting? As a Podcast?

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The heart of the matter. Do don’t know what it is until you’ve done it. You don’t understand why it is hard, until you’ve done it internationally.

The crack cast of How We Manage Stuff prepares to depart for Germany. At one level, the problem is simple. A small German logistics firm needs some help. It’s a drama of course. But dramas are good at the exposing the heart of the matter. Almost as good as doing it yourself.

Cast:

  • Chuck  – Ron Bianchi
  • Debbon Ayer  – Herself
  • Josh LaForce – Himself
  • Ziggy – Skippy

[18313]

 

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We Read It: The Great Convergence

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Globalization.  It seems to be a term  of another era.  Simpler.  Less chaotic.  Quieter, perhaps.  Civil, if that remains a relevant concept.

In this episode, we return to that idea as part of our recurring series “We Read It So You Don’t Have To.”  Specifically, we look at the role of technology in linking national economies together.  Our intrepid reviewing team considers The Great Convergence by Richard Baldwin.

Cast:

  • Penelope Othmar, Principle of the Lillian Moller Gilbreth School of Disruptive Innovation   –  Debbon Ayer
  • Sulley from PR & Policy  – Josh LaForce

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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]

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Success & Temptation

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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]

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Searching for Intelligent Machines

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Do smart machines help us understand smarts? More important, do we learn something about intelligence by working with artificial intelligence? The results are mixed. Current researchers regularly argue that their work is inspired by their understanding of the brain but that claim still begs the question, “do these machines teach us about through?” Some of the more common forms of smart machines, so common we not longer think of them as smart, rely on various forms of search. And of course, we can ask, is searching smart, even when we find a good answer? Third in a series on smart machines hosted by Anna-the-Intern.

Cast:

  • Jenny – Debbon Ayer
  • Zack – Jake Minevich
  • Anna the Intern – Sarah Corbyn Woolf

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