EppsNet Archive: Uncertainty

Are You Sure?

I was closing out of Remote Desktop Connection Manager and got the popup shown here. Am I sure? To the extent that we can really be sure about anything, then yes I’m sure. Why is the No option selected as the default? Is there an assumption that I’m flying by the seat of my pants, acting randomly and without certitude?  That I’m not a confident person? That I lack the courage of my convictions? Read more →

You were a fool, and set your thoughts on uncertainties. Why then do you not accuse yourself, instead of sitting crying like young girls? — Epictetus, Discourses, Book IV, Ch. 10

If You Tolerate It, You Insist On It

Whenever you perceive that a virtue is missing or that a vice is present, you either tolerate the situation or try to change it. If you cannot “fix” it, you can at least withdraw your participation. The problem with tolerating the absence of virtue or the existence of vice is that this choice summons them into your life. You might tell yourself stories about the problem you perceive and your tolerance of it: That’s just the way it is in the real world. Others will not listen even-handedly to your perceptions and advice. It’s not your place to say truthful but difficult things. The problem lies in another department. You are not reading the situation correctly. You may not be able to discern beauty from ugliness or efficiency from waste, and your ignorance will be exposed. You’ll be rejected or ridiculed. You will look dumb if you ask for help… Read more →

Don’t Know What You Don’t Know

It is essential not to profess to know, or seem to know, or accept that someone else knows, that which is unknown. Almost without exception, the things that end up coming back to haunt you are things you pretended to understand but didn’t early on. At virtually every stage of even the most successful software projects, there are large numbers of very important things that are unknown. It is acceptable, even mandatory, to clearly articulate your ignorance, so that no one misunderstands the corporate state of unknowingness. If you do not disseminate this “lucid ignorance,” disaster will surely befall you. Human nature is such that we dislike not knowing things that are important to our well being. Since there is so much we don’t know in a software project, the nearly universal tendency among developers and their managers is to gloss over or even deny altogether the extent of their… Read more →

Don’t Look Back

In uncertain conditions the main question should not be: “Why didn’t your performance yesterday conform to the original plan?” Rather, it should be: “What kind of feedback can help you learn faster and perform better tomorrow?” — “Ninety-Nine Rules for Managing ‘Faster, Better, Cheaper’ Projects” Read more →

Declaration of Interdependence

We increase return on investment by making continuous flow of value our focus. We deliver reliable results by engaging customers in frequent interactions and shared ownership. We expect uncertainty and manage for it through iterations, anticipation, and adaptation. We unleash creativity and innovation by recognizing that individuals are the ultimate source of value, and creating an environment where they can make a difference. We boost performance through group accountability for results and shared responsibility for team effectiveness. We improve effectiveness and reliability through situationally specific strategies, processes and practices. — Declaration of Interdependence Read more →