Monday, July 11, 2005
Touche! ...I mean Ouch!
All my company needs is a carrot-topped businessman with a baby pout- and we have ‘The Apprentice’ drama on our hands.
We have these two teams who don’t see eye to eye (unless it’s a cruel twist of fate)– the techies and the mangies.
The techies are people who wear porridge colored shirts and black trousers. (We don’t have women in that department in our company.) They do not make eye-contact with anyone who is not a techie. Techies deal with computer systems, coding, outages, and anything that can be acronymized – VPN, FTP, SPC, ETC. They regard women as that section of ‘non-techies’ who cause problems to VPN, FTP, SPC, ETC. Women do not have it in them to fight viruses, they have no innate appreciation for hackers, and women writers – ahem! Techies believe that God in all His wisdom must have created that life form whose computer always hangs when they download a Wordsworth poem. (By the way, they scratch their well-oiled heads – what man writes about daffodils?)
The mangies are the managers. They plan and estimate and collate and allocate ‘resources’. They wear porride-can colored shirts and a Puritan expression (someone somewhere is happy – gasp!) Several of these resources are inanimate; but some are animate (such as writers and techies.) But managers will seldom interact with these two groups unless absolutely necessary – a point that always arises too late. They are modern day corporate Neros. But they also interact with clients and sometimes negotiate terms in favor of the animate resources. (Sorry! We absolutely cannot have a million copies ready by tomorrow. Make it half a million and I’ll have my two-and-a half resources deliver it within the deadline.)
Now, techies think mangies to be ‘All fart, no shit.’ (I wonder why that’s such a bad thing though. I mean, if you think what the alternative is…)
Mangies think techies are people with comatose intellect.
( - I have to send this today.
- The server’s down.
- Do you not understand? It’s a critical project. We’ll lose an important client, man. Why do you think we had all those lay-offs last month? We couldn’t deliver, that’s why. I have to send this to the client today.
- The server’s down.)
So…Techies vs Mangies …Round One
G, a mangie, got strung along to Paris for a very important project. His job was to make the client see reason or else deliver a product according to client specifications, which strangely enough are as ambiguous as a badger’s diurnal thoughts. G orders a conference call to be attended by a writer, another mangie, and a techie.
Writer and fellow mangie: Hi G
G: It’s not looking good.
Fellow Mangie: Explain.
G: The client won’t understand. We have to deliver what they’re asking us.
Techie: Not possible.
G: And why not?
Techie: We don’t know what they want.
G: I see…and we’ll let something like that get in the way, is it?
Writer: Yeah – it’s not about what they want but what we can give them.
From unknown source: Shh!
G: Listen, I want you to work on some samples based on what specs they had given us earlier. Let’s show them something…so they know where to begin.
Techie: We need to know where to begin..and they’re supposed to tell us. It’s not supposed to be the other way around.
G: Okay, so that’s that.
Writer: Hey! I can’t write anything unless I have that software. What do I do?
Fellow Mangie: Dash off a mail to G.
Writer in an e-mail to G (which has been marked to techie and mangie): I need the software and stuff. Specs aren’t enough. What do I do?
G replies to mail; Cc to techie, fellow mangie, head honcho of marketing, departmental voice of finance, whipcracker of Client Accounts: Ask the tech department. The system gays will take care of that.
Spellcheck or not - that must have hurt.