I recently overheard a staff meeting with one of my customers. They were talking about an exemplary employee who has a motto "No Punch List!". Basically in their business they install furniture. Very often, on a job, there is a missing piece, something needs to be modified, or a change otherwise made. So, the installers create a "Punch List" of follow up action items.
During this meeting, the supervisor was talking about the one employee who lives by the credo "No Punch List". This employee purchased their own tools and put together a well stocked repair kit. This employee runs installations, and when things go awry, he was prepared to deal with the situation and fix problems right there, on the spot to get the job DONE. Not just "mostly done", but "done done".
I thought this was a pretty neat story on a few levels.
1) It has some elements of leadership. This employee took it upon himself to outfit himself with a toolbelt. This toolbelt allowed him to deal with situations much more capably and mitigate issues. I sent the message "The buck stops here. We're here to do a job, not shoulder work off to someone else or our future selves".
2) It's a great customer success story. This employee had higher satisfaction ratings because his team got things done faster with less return trips and less errors. Instead of installing something wrong, they would use their tools and fix it so it would be installed correctly.
3) From a PM perspective, it screams "Getting Things Done" and the Two Minute Rule. If it can be fixed or done in two minutes or less, don't bother writing it down, just DO IT.
So how does this seguey to Cloud Computing? Well, I think the three points are easily transferable.
1) With cloud computing, the "toolbelt" that you need is much, much smaller than traditional software. The technology stack is abstracted and we only need to master a few elements to be able to deal with a large number of issues. When we founded Red Argyle, we subscribed to a few cloud services and bought a few MacBooks. That was the extent of the company infrastructure. Our "toolbelt" was quick and easy to put together and we were ready to rock.
2) The cloud creates customer success. Customers are not forced to dedicate resources to building infrastructure. They can take an idea, and run with it. The cloud brings ideas to life dramatically faster than traditional software.
3) Getting things done is the nature of cloud computing. Many, Many more tasks can be done in two minutes or less. This means more productivity and faster project turnaround. Idea to Application happens in days not months or years.
With cloud computing, the punch list of mundane fixes is history. With cloud computing, we don't need to put things off to the future to make it happen. With a few minutes, and a web browser, problems can be solved. It's a liberating feeling, and it's great to know that it's possible to do away with the Punch List with the cloud.
Do you have any thoughts on this? What does your toolbelt consist of?