Feb 262012
 

Some of you know I am the CIO of a company that went into and out of chapter 11 restructuring in 53 days, completing with the sale of our company to a stalking horse private equity firm. I started with the company about seven weeks before our chapter 11 filing. What all of that means (for the sake of this story) is: My first four weeks were heavily influenced by taking out costs and conserving cash The next three weeks involved “discovery” and other processes leading to bankruptcy We spent 53 days [read more…]

Feb 082012
 
Padding estimates and promises

A few days ago, we uncovered an opportunity that depended a lot on timing. If we could get it going in five days, we could exploit it… if it took longer than that, the timing was going to impact some other strategic concerns. I asked a developer for an estimate of the effort, and he said it would take ten days to complete. About my own estimates I have always been sensitive to suggest my own estimates to other developers. My estimates nearly always scared others, but I had a [read more…]

Oct 222011
 
Living a case study - the other side of the table

Many of you know I recently accepted the role of Chief Information Officer for American Laser Skincare. In coming into this new situation, my current thinking may be more of a bird’s nest than our server room (which is nowhere near as tangled as the picture on the right). Meanwhile, you may have read that we are not victims of circumstance, or at least we don’t have to be. Getting my thinking straight has to be my first and highest concern. I have decided that getting clear in my thinking necessarily means fewer [read more…]