Working Up

Working Up in Project Management, Systems Engineering, Technology, and Writing

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Entries from September 2009

Solitude and Stupidity

September 28th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips I like to work alone. Being alone, however, brings a heightened risk. There is great value in having another person to talk to. Absent others, checklists and other reminders are helpful. I have been taking a walk this past week. I have been all alone in doing this. I won’t describe the […]

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Tags: Judgment · Learning · People

Being Smart and Being Wrong

September 24th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Quick, read the following and agree or disagree: Smart people are wrong more often than stupid people. I believe the above is true. It seems that smart people read, study, think, and propose ideas more often than stupid people. Stupid people seem to sit around and choose-your-own-stupid-activity (e.g. watch TV, surf the […]

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Tags: Learning · Logic · People

Give Them an Ice Cream Cone

September 21st, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Customers don’t always act like responsible customers. Managers don’t always act like responsible managers. This is the real world, and often less-than-adult behavior exists. Sometimes you soothe people by giving them something they really want, even if it isn’t good for them. Here is a true story. I was the engineer. I […]

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Tags: Communication · Culture · People


September 17th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Analysis paralysis is where I sit and think a long time about what I should do. I recommend against such. Instead, experience has taught my that in most cases the best thing to do is one thing, and then the next, and then the next. This has happened to me about a […]

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Tags: Judgment · Management · Process

Rounding Off

September 14th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips People accomplish most of the work on projects. People don’t need to know every tiny detail from me. They are good at filling in the gaps themselves. Rounding off the details is fine in all work where people play a large role. I am not a mathematician – I am an engineer. […]

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Tags: Management · People


September 10th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Much has changed in computers in the past 30 years. Something that has not changed is that the input/output part of the computer is paramount. See, for example, the iPhone computer. It was in the dark ages of computing back in 1978. I was taking a class in assembly language programming for […]

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Tags: Design · Technology

A Movie about Writing

September 8th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips A quick note about the writing aspects of the movie “Julie and Julia.” I took my wife to see the movie Julie and Julia this past weekend. My wife is an avid cook, so this movie attracted her (the last movie we saw was the action-packed District 9 – she didn’t like […]

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Tags: Writing

Trying Harder

September 7th, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips I am working a on process improvement this week. I wish I could state a brilliant insight. Alas, all I have is, “let’s try harder.” That reduces to having good people spend the time necessary to do a task well. Blogs don’t always announce breakthroughs in any field of endeavor. Let’s downgrade […]

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Tags: Learning · Management · Process · Writing

Writing in the Air

September 3rd, 2009 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips A recent manager wrote his thoughts in the air with his finger. There was some good, some bad, and some annoyances with this habit. But, as with most things people do, there was plenty to learn. I worked on a short project recently where the project manager wrote in the air. To […]

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Tags: Communication · Learning · Management · Writing