I'm a Genius!That was the shortest meeting ever! I expected it to be rife with flailing arms, expletives, and what-the-hell-are-we-going-to-do-about-its. Instead, it was brief, concise, and a clear plan of action was defined. I had dropped a string of facts and analyses on the lead developer and COO about the utilization of our external network connection and described how there was no reason to believe that there was any over-utilization causing the application to run slowly. On top of that, there had been only 8 reported cases of the issue; the problem was real, but the scope was limited. I left the meeting thinking, "I'm a genius!" I ran to my team to tell them so.
Me: "I'm a genius! Want to know why?"
Team: (Eyes rolling. Some impatient shuffling.)
Me: "Seriously! Does anyone know why?"
Sysadmin 1: "You ate your Wheaties this morning?"
Sysadmin 2: (Puts ear buds back in...)
Support Desk Tech 1: (Blinks. Slowly.)
Me: "Because of all of you! Because you provided me with network utilization data. Because you provided me with database performance metrics. Because you provided me with the number of reported cases."
I have their collective attention now.
I took all of the information, analyzed it, and presented it in a meeting to effectively drive the discussion using facts. There was no room for conjecture, subjectivity, or assumptions. I was able to lay it out for everyone else to see and review themselves. Hence, a short meeting. And I owe it all to my team that continues to do the important work.
We monitor our environment. We collect new data every day, revise what we currently collect, and strive to visualize and correlate events better through constant iteration. My guys know that I get jazzed up about data collection and defining metrics. I wanted them to see the benefits of consistently doing this work.
I'm only a genius because each of them, in their roles and in their own ways, are geniuses too.