After I left the power plant and went to work for Dell on August 20, 2001, I wrote letters back to my friends at the plant letting them know how things were going. This is the one hundred and fourth letter I wrote. Keep in mind that at the time when I originally penned this letter I didn’t intend on it being posted online.
9/17/04 – Quick Note from Dell
Dear Sooneridians and friends,
I have just kicked off a database job and I am sitting here watching it hoping that it will finish before it is time to go home. So I thought I would take this opportunity to write to you to tell you how things are going down here. Congratulations to Toby for getting his new position!!!! That’s great. Now maybe he will stop moving around from job to job every two years.
Note to reader: To learn more about Toby O’Brien, see the post “Toby Teaches Power Plant Time Management.
I went to some more training this week. I went to one class called, “Building better I/T Client Relationships”. We learned all sorts of neat ways that you approach different people in order to get them interested in what you are trying to get them to do.
They said that people fall into 4 different categories. Some are Analyzers, others are Facilitators, then there are Promoters, and there are also Controllers. — I thought. Hmmmmm. I wonder which category some of my old bosses would be in?
Well let’s see. There was the Equipment Support Supervisor. He was definitely a Controller. Then there was the Human Resources Supervisor. She was definitely a Controller. Then there was the plant manager, He was undoubtedly a Controller. — Gee that about sums it up. Doesn’t it?
Well. That means that there is only one way to deal with all these “leaders”. That’s right. Sit back and watch them all try to control everyone else. It’s kinda fun when you think about it. With all that controlling going on, there wasn’t much room left to “Facilitate”. — Anyway. I’ll stop all this Psychology sounding talk and get on to more pleasant conversation.
You realize that when the database job finishes, I’m outta here, so if I suddenly end this letter without so much as a “How-do-you-do”, you’ll know why. So I’ll just say all that now before the job finishes. “I hope you guys are doing great! Write when you can. Your Friendly Dell Programmer, Kevin James Anthony Breazile”. There. Now I don’t have to worry about putting that at the end of the letter when my job finishes.
I normally wouldn’t start a job running like this, but my manager sent me an e-mail a little while ago and he said that we were about ready to run out of licenses for our timekeeping application and he was wondering if I could run some sort of database job on the application and terminate a bunch of useless employees. — Well. He didn’t quite word it like that.
He said he was wondering if I could terminate a bunch of employees in Kronos that haven’t used the application since the beginning of the year so that we could free up some licenses for all the new people we are hiring. — We have started hiring all those people in Oklahoma City, and other places, and we are in the middle of….. Oh. I better not talk about that.
I just saw a big burly guy walk down the main aisle, and I suppose he’s coming over here to check what I’m saying so I don’t spill the beans about anything that is “Confidential”. So I won’t. Anyway. I wrote this SQL statement (that’s stuff that databases like). — Oh. My job just completed…….
Oh. I can’t help it…..
I hope everything is going well with you guys. Let me know how you are doing when you get the chance. Talk to you later.
Your friendly Dell Programmer,
Kevin James Anthony Breazile
Kevin J. Breazile
Global Financial Services I/T
Interesting categorization of people.
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They did something similar at Verizon when I worked tech support there. We used different terms to describe our customer service skills, tho. There were socializers, closers, facilitators, and analyzers. A socializer created a person to person rapport to make the customer comfortable. A closer made a good salesperson. I don’t remember what facilitators did. Analyzers used their knowledge and logic to quickly zero in on a customer’s issue and fix it.
Analyzers weren’t welcome anymore. The idea was to create a system (the Wizard) where they could hire people who had no IT training whatsoever and all you had to do was check boxes. Even the many non-Analyzers felt this was a slap in the face as they had worked hard to become skillful at something that did not come easily.
It did not work all that well but technical skill was something they couldn’t afford. Of course, the wizard was created by IT in India to save money.
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That’s a great comment Fred! Thanks for sharing it.