Some Sticky Notes

A Fortune Global 500 company asked me to conduct a 2-days training course on Software Project Management. The syllabus was prescribed, which included Agile Development Methodologies.

I reached the reception 30 minutes before the course was to commence. With polite courtesies, the security person interrogated me.  Though I gave him data on make, model, and serial number of my laptop, his process required him to twist and turn the gadget to confirm and record the information. Did I have a pen-drive? If so, I was to deposit it at reception. I did not carry one. He needed to record the name of my company. This created a problem because I do not work for or represent any company. He could not consider that an individual could be entertained, while name of a company, real or pseudo, would be fine. When I refused to give fictitious information, he was puzzled. He made a few phone calls and resolved the issue. He gave me an identity card, where my photo had no resemblance with me. Someone safely escorted me to the training room.

In the training room, the video cable to connect the laptop to the projector was defective; text and images did not display with original colours and readability was poor. Training coordinator called a technical support person, who appeared after about 15 minutes, agreed that the cable was defective and disappeared.

The training coordinator asked if I needed any other help. Yes, I wanted a couple of post-it pads (sticky notes, recommended in Agile Process). Oh, that was not possible in such short notice. The training department would have to fill in a requisition slip and forward to the logistics department through proper channel. It would take a couple of days to get the item. But, I had sent a mail a week earlier telling that I would need such pads. The mail was addressed to a coordinator responsible for the training then. This week someone else is handling it, who does not know about the past demands.

The participants asked for the set of slides I used in the class because the prints they received were of a different training. I had sent my slides to the training coordinator earlier. Now it would be easier for me to give the participants a copy … but the process would not allow transfer of information from my laptop to theirs through a medium.

I also had recommended a week in advance that three different software tools be installed in the classroom PCs so that the participants could have some hands-on sessions. None of them was installed. I did not ask which procedure did not allow that and ended up only demonstrating what I wanted the participants to experience with hands-on.

The sticky notes did not appear till the end of two-days training, and the video cable was not changed. Courseware could not be given and the software tools were not installed. Should the company call me again for the same training, things are not likely to change.

In the same classroom there probably was a training on Agile Development Methodology. A chart on the soft-board displayed agile manifesto:

Individuals and interactions  Over             Processes and tools

Working software                    Over              Comprehensive documentation

Customer collaboration           Over              Contract negotiation

Responding to change             Over              Following a plan



About pgbhat

A retired Naval Officer and an educationist. Has experience with software industry. A guest faculty at different institutes and a corporate trainer with software development companies.
This entry was posted in Communication, Profession, Technology. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Some Sticky Notes

  1. Girija Hegde says:

    A trainer’s nightmare indeed!

    We attended a prize distribution ceremony of a college where our students were declared as winners of best static model , whereas our science model was a working model!


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