Thursday, July 06, 2006

A Manager's Mind is a Strange Place

A while ago (in another company than the one I work for now) I worked for a company that did not believe in making things easy for their developers. Everyone had to work in an open landscape. The landscape was divided into rectangular cells. Developers sat at corner desks, so that developers in a cell faced away from each other. To make communication between developers even more difficult, people working on the same project were usually located in different cells.

A new and very complicated project began. We developers realized that the seating arrangements would never work. There was no way we could succeed if we could not talk to each other. We decided to ask our department manager for a project room of our own.

The department manager realized that we needed to work close by to have the slightest chance of success. "OK," he said, "you'll get the room, for this project, because it is an unusually difficult one, but of course you can't get one every time you need it."

Read the previous paragraph again. What do you think went on in the manager's head?

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