The 21st Century IT Stonecutter's Parable

October 22, 2013 — Posted by Al Shalloway

I paraphrase an old story of stonecutters asked what they were doing.  The first answered - "I am making a block of stone."    The second - "I am making a wall."  The third - "I am making a church." The fourth answered "I am creating a place where people can embrace their spirit and be one with god."

An updated version might be asking IT ops folks what they are doing putting a blade server in the server rack.  "I am installing a blade server."  "I am improving the capabilities of our servers."  "I am enabling the services my company has written to be used more effectively."   "I am assisting our clients in achieving their life's goals."

Al Shalloway

 

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About the author | Al Shalloway

Al Shalloway is the founder and CEO of Net Objectives. With over 40 years of experience, Alan is an industry thought leader in Lean, Kanban, product portfolio management, SAFe, Scrum and agile design.


Comments

<p>That last one fails though. Life objective is too generic, and misses the spirit of the original. There is a vast different between those who's life objective is to destroy the world trade towers, and someone who's life objective is to find a cure cancer. A new blade server could be argued to help with either, but I think it is obvious that we would think differently of someone who knowingly assists with one of those goals vs the other. I am helping hundreds of researchers cure cancer has a nice ring to it.</p>

Remember the company has a focus.  For example, if the company the person works for is an insurance company then they will be looking to see how their products are helping people with their life's objectives.  The person is not trying to help anybody in their life's objectives but their company's customers. 

This is exactly the same as the original in that a church is only going to help those who believe in god.  The person is not trying to help atheists.

 

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