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Working life
By ReallyEvilCanine (Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 03:53:25 AM EST) (all tags)
Five Things At Once

I have to make quite a few decisions in the course of my workday. The biggest decisions are made when prioritising who gets my help based on what needs to get done within a particular time frame.

I currently have 22 open tickets at varying stages of completion. Eight require updates. I have a pile of mail to sort through and many specialty info requests from colleagues.

x-posted to da brog.



I don't know; maybe I'm looking at this the wrong way. I'm pretty sure the way I do things makes sense but perhaps I just don't understand something. Here's my prioritising dilemma. I don't have enough time to complete all of these:


1) Three colleague requests for Unicode info (one due to an escalated ticket)
2) One request from Sales for Citrix info (deal is dependent on answers)
3) A big customer who always answers my questions within hours and has an active TAR who I can also consult with, and whose system I've currently set up to test on the machine to my left.
4) A smaller customer who received a complete answer eleven days ago and didn't respond, who also didn't respond to the automatic "Please update your fucking ticket" mails sent seven and four days ago, and who decided yesterday that he wants maximum escalation and is demanding a phone call from me two hours after I expect to leave the office and refuses to explain what he wants or if he's even read the fucking two-week-old answer ago much less actually tried to implement it.
5) Editing/rewriting two technical documents (deadline for completion is tomorrow at 10:00a.m.)

I'd start with #3 since the testbed is already set up and while that testing (which requires occasional interaction) is running, knock out the escalation in #1, then answer #2, go back and finish #1, and then deal with #5. That's the plan anyway, and it looks workable.

The man behind Item #4 can suck a fart out of my ass. If I call that fuckwit I could be on the phone for anything from five minutes to five hours. But maybe I'm missing something. Perhaps my logic is fallacious. To the best of my knowledge this customer isn't extra-super-important nor politically connected/sensitive. So why do I know that blowing this one off is going to cause me more grief than failure to complete any of the others, all of which have a greater importance on every scale I can think of?

Whichever choice I make will inevitably be wrong to someone; my concern is damage control -- minimising the overall level of Wrong. No matter what strategy I use, it's a game I appear never to be able to win, Professor Falken.

Item #4 ain't getting done today. Not by me, anyway.

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A Day in the Life | 7 comments (7 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Poll response: by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #1 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 03:56:49 AM EST
Duh! I can pick the right answer with my eyes closed. From across the room. With a shoe thrown at the mouse.

With Kate Nash blaring away on the wireless? by BadDoggie (4.00 / 1) #3 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 04:23:56 AM EST
Look, I know that I'm right about 4 but whenever I'm right things seem to go wrong. I'm seriously wondering if I'm missing something here. The decision is clear and yet I just know it'll come back and bite me in the ass.

woof.

OMG WE'RE FUCKED! -- duxup ?

[ Parent ]
It will go wrong by Merekat (4.00 / 4) #4 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 05:07:20 AM EST
But that is no reason not to take that decision.

[ Parent ]
Then by Phage (2.00 / 0) #5 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 05:15:56 AM EST
Send another email referring to your earlier emails. He probably won't read it but it would be a great CYA should it all blow up later on. That shouldn't take long and would be a good insurance.

[ Parent ]
most deadlines are false by fleece (2.00 / 0) #2 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 04:19:56 AM EST
just work out what's really most important then do that first. by the time you finish #1 there'll be all new stuff on the pile so all you're plans for #2, #3, #4 etc will have gone to shit anyway

deadlines may be false by Merekat (2.00 / 0) #6 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 05:18:49 AM EST
But there can be benefit in meeting them. In the case of documentation, not having to do it later is a big one:)

[ Parent ]
Speaking as a manager... by DullTrev (4.00 / 3) #7 Fri Aug 31, 2007 at 08:08:08 AM EST

The correct answer is that none of them are best ignored. You just need to work more efficiently.

And don't complain about too much work. That just makes me think you're planning to slack off.

And don't ask for more work. That just makes me think you've been slacking off.

And don't keep quiet. That just makes me think you're currently slacking off.

Speaking as a rational human being, complete the one most likely to cause you grief if you don't, then the next most likely, etc. I suspect this would probably put #4 higher up the list - #3 can wait, because they'll probably give you more leeway if they have had good service in the past...

Speaking as an actual human being, ignore #4.


--
DFJ?
A Day in the Life | 7 comments (7 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback