Eight to Late

Sensemaking and Analytics for Organizations

A bank loses a valued asset

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My mate Raj used to cut database code for a large corporate IT shop. He was one of a team of several super-specialised database dudes at The Contemporary Bank. Raj’s job at Con Bank (as the fine financial institution is referred to by certain cynics) was developing data interfaces. In fact, he’d done so many of these, that he was the indisputable imperator of interfaces at Con Bank . Raj was a reluctant rajah, however. He’d rather not have had anything further to do with interfaces. So fed up was he, that he didn’t want to hear about another interface until at least the midnight of Friday, December 31 9999. [Incidentally, when queried as to why that specific date he told me to go and look it up in the online documentation for DB2.  As is evident, he’s a true database devotee.]

Anyway, unwilling to wait until the end of time, Raj teed up a meeting with his manager to discuss the unhappy state of affairs, and what might be done to redress it. The manager – call him Franz – gave Raj a patient hearing. He proferred platitudes (“Oh, I understand how you must feel”) and promises (“We’ll move you to the DBA group in a few months”) in plenty, and for a while the promise of change was enough to keep Raj going. Nothing changed. Three months later, thinking that three months certainly qualified as “a few”, he approached Franz for another chat. Franz, guessing what the subject of the chat might be, continually made excuses to postpone it. Finally when cornered, he admitted that it wouldn’t really be possible to move Raj to another group (who would do the interfaces then?).

The sorry state of affairs finally led to the inevitable conclusion; one that is played out again and again in countless organizations the world over: Raj started to look for another job. He found one within a few weeks and put in his resignation. Franz tried to persuade Raj to reconsider, but Raj wouldn’t.

Con Bank’s still looking for another data interface specialist. They might have saved themselves the trouble had they offered Raj a little more variety on the job.

Written by K

September 6, 2007 at 5:10 am

Posted in People Management

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