June 07, 2004

A Valuable Lesson

Man, oh man, have I been busy. Busier than a nine-assed man in a getting-your-ass-kicked contest. I don't know what that has to do with "busy", but it's still a pretty apt metaphor for my last week or so, so I'm going to go with it.

Now, I consider blogging to be my true calling, but I've got to pay the bills somehow until I can make it big as a world-famous blogger. (Every word I write, I write for free. How am I going to make any money? Volume.) So I have a day job. And at this day job, due to an absolutely hilarious set of mishaps, coincidences and oversights, a very important time-sensitive database copy did not happen last week, and this was not discovered until after it was too late to get it done. Among the things that went wrong was the failure of both redundant backups, so we were screwed. Sort of a perfect storm thing.

The second-to-worst thing about this is that it was partly (mainly?) my fault. The worst thing was that it was discovered by my most unreasonable and demanding internal customer, whom I refer to by the affectionate nickname of "Satan".

So I work like a fiend, salvage the data, and write a custom report so the main user of the app (not Satan, but another manager) can meet her deadline in spite of the downtime. And now I'm a hero, because I worked so hard, above and beyond, yadda yadda.

So here's the rub: This process goes off without a hitch every month for over a year and I'm a schmuck. I let it go wrong, clean up my own mess, and now I walk on water.

The lesson: It is better to be visible than to be good at your job.

Posted by Mr Green at June 7, 2004 08:31 AM

AMEN brother! Sounds like you and I have the same kinda job and the same kinda "internal customers". When it works and works smooth you are lazy...when it breaks it's ALWAYS your fault...when you fix it you are a Saint. Makes no sense but it seems to be the hand we're dealt.

Posted by: Wayne Fielder at June 8, 2004 11:57 AM

Spoken like a man who knows!

Posted by: Mr. Green at June 9, 2004 08:52 AM

Competence blows.

Posted by: Simon at June 10, 2004 12:31 AM

What are you doin' telling the secret to success?!?! Shoot - now I've been outed.

It does work every time, doesn't it?

Posted by: Tammi at June 11, 2004 06:32 AM