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 eleventh letter I wrote.
12/7/04 – Working at the Speed of Dell
Dear Soonerites and friends,
It has been a few weeks since I wrote. What, with the Thanksgiving Holiday and all. Only now am I recovering from the Turkey Binge that occurred a couple of weeks ago.
I just finished reading an article online called “Living In Dell Time” that described what it is like working at Dell better than I ever could. You guys ought to read this article, it will give you an idea of what it is like working here. Here is the link:
I would suggest reading it all the way through, because it is so interesting. You might want to print it out and take it with you when you go to the bathroom so you will have something to do while you are waiting for things to develop. This was the best article about Dell I have ever read as far as describing how things are run around here.
I didn’t know how much they could actually mention. I noticed they didn’t say anything about the leprechauns and Keebler elves that just twitch their nose to assemble computers. That is still too much of a trade secret to make it into a magazine article.
I like the part in the article toward the end where it is talking about how we hold our supplier’s feet to the fire. At one point it said how we gave a “Team Award” to Maxtor hard drive company for becoming our preferred hard drive company, and then about 10 seconds later, before the Executive Vice President that was receiving the award could get back to his seat, Dell was warning them that we were about ready to drop them if they didn’t meet our “new” expectations!!!!
That’s what it is like on these projects I’m on. When you receive any recognition or anything, that’s all for things you have already done, and doesn’t count for anything you are doing at the moment. — Things sure do move fast around here.
You might remember when I first came here that the first project they gave me was to build a whole new web application that interacted with our Data Warehouse and that had a whole bunch of features and stuff and it was due 2 weeks before they gave it to me. My manager at the time told me that I might as well get used to it, that’s the way things are done at Dell.
That’s how our company can have a Negative 36 day Cash Conversion Cycle (for all of you Finance people out there — if any of you are. Oh yeah. Annette, you know what I’m talking about). A Negative 36 day Cash Conversion Cycle is unheard of. — That’s in the article too.
All right. I’ll quit “gloating” (or whatever I’m doing) about Dell. I heard that you guys at Sooner have been just shy of being in Heaven since my last letter. Yeah. I heard the roar of applause from all the way down here when you received the glorious news that the most illustrious Equipment Support Supervisor has finally decided to retire!!!!
I can’t tell you how happy I am for you guys!! This is so great!!! Now you know how the abolition of slavery must have felt to the slaves!!! I kept walking around the building that day with my arms going up and down over my head like people do at a football game when they are trying to urge their team on with a cheer.
I suppose it looked kind of strange. Especially since I had this big goofy smile on my face and the only noise I was making sounded as if I had been slain in the Holy Spirit and I was speaking in tongues. I have to admit, it did strike me in some way as a profound religious experience. — I think it had something to do with the virtue of Hope!!!
As if all bad things finally do come to an end. Ok. So I may be overdoing it a little. I’m sure some of you are sad and forlorn that this era of Sooner management has come to an end; but only those of you that are a glutton for punishment.
Well. I can see by the old clock in the bottom right hand corner of my computer screen that it is time for me to go home. I’ll write later. I hope everything is going well with you, and I’m sorry that I will have to miss the going-away party (that should be a great party — With songs like “Ding Dong the Witch Is Dead” and other classical songs being sung throughout).
Talk to you later,
Your Friendly Dell Programmer,
Kevin James Anthony Breazile
Kevin J. Breazile
Global Financial Services I/T