Sunday, February 12, 2012

Some Programming Notes

I've officially been working for the man for a month now, and the whole corporate environment has provided some fantastic opportunities to observe people and how they work. (How fitting, considering the company I work for is in the business of improving the ways people work.) I'm trying to make a habit of jotting down things I'd like to think about some more, and I planned to sit down tonight and pound out a thoughtful post about one of the topics, but realized I don't have anything meaningful to say on them yet.

So, in lieu of actual content, I'm listing some of the things I've noted in hopes that getting them in public will force me to come back in a timely manner and expand on them. Note that these thoughts don't necessarily reflect things I've seen going on at work, just things I've thought about in general.

1. Manipulation of employees through corporate culture. I don't necessarily mean that in a bad way, but it's interesting that gaining buy-in from employees is so difficult, and it seems that just recently management is realizing that being honest to their employees is almost always a better way to go than tricking or forcing them into their ideal process.

2. Piggy-backing on that idea, I'm fascinated by the number of buzzwords that are thrown around these days. Phrases like "leveraging social media" and "employee wellness program" are everywhere, and often they serve to put a mismatched faceplate on what's actually happening or mask the fact that those implementing a system or program don't really understand it.

3. In an unrelated topic, I'm interested to see where voice control of gadgets is going to go in the workplace. I'm not a huge fan, at least not yet, but folks seem to love their Siri, and while I haven't seen it going on at work yet I wouldn't be surprised to see it seeping in a bit here or there.

4. And finally, I want to take a while to try to understand how successful companies go about making the distinction between designing products, systems, and processes to try to meet their vision of some utopia out in the future and innovating to meet a future that isn't perfect but can actually happen. There's no better way to kill a project than to assume nothing will go wrong, and the same is true with a vision for the future.

Anyway, just some things to ponder. If anyone has thoughts or comments, please share, I'd love to hear some ideas other than my own.


  1. I really look forward to the topic of #1. If I had to write a masters thesis, it would be on that topic. The words manipulation and buy-in get me thinking. I would turn the card of honesty back to employees as well. If a corporate culture can quickly stop the game of chess and be honest with each other, things can get done quickly. I also like #2. If you were to show up to Target for a day, you have 1-to-1 odds of hearing "Socialize this idea" at the end of the meeting.

  2. I recently finished "Drive" by Daniel(?) Pink and it has some interesting stuff sort of related to #1. Might be one to read...

    Anyhow I enjoy the blog entries - keep them coming!