Thursday, April 18, 2013
*This is my actual career pretty much in a nutshell. Except for ColdFusion. I did ASP programming. Go figure. And yes, there is a web app that I wrote in 2001 that is still running.
**OK, the first paragraph is pretty much true, but we never really got beyond that. There is no campus-wide "Web Office" here, but if there was, I guarantee it would have no actual authority.
***Back to the literal truth.
OK, OK, I'm not trying to harsh on our IT managers here. They honestly try to do their best with limited resources. I actually peeved off a couple of directors when I asked if they'd had management training, because in their case, they did have at least some training, but "lots of experience". But I think they both admitted they'd had no training here at Hypothetical State University.
Anyway, this cartoon is more a satire of myself than it is of anyone else. I'm trying to get a PMO off the ground with no effing clue of what I'm doing. But, hey, I'm as good at project management as anyone else in our IT department. Sigh.
But the serious question is this: do we really prepare people for IT management? Do we groom people to become managers? Train them? Give them the best tools possible to succeed and lead the organization? I dare anyone to answer yes.
Again, I'm not trying to apportion blame here. It's really a matter of cultural priorities and awareness. We've never focused on it before, and no one has insisted that it's an absolute must, so although we know it has value, we never quite get around to it. And anyway, there are always more "urgent" fires to put out.
The saddest thing to me is that we have technical people who *could* be prepared to be good managers, but we don't invest in them, and they either never get the opportunity to advance because they lack management qualifications (Catch-22 style) or they do advance and become poor managers because they never got the training and support they needed.
The worst thing about this whole situation is that we are on *at least* our second generation of IT managers who basically just rose up through the ranks without formal preparation to be an IT manager. The older generation is now retiring and a new generation is taking over.
Are we cluing in on the need for cultural change in IT yet?
Posted by Tony Dunn at 4/18/2013 09:00:00 AM