A record for the time, the Business.com domain was purchased for $7.5 million in 1999 and was touted to be the future search engine for all business information. That vision never materialized, but the company was purchased for $345 Million in 2007 by R H Donnelley Corp, which, 2 years later filed for chapter 11.
Business.com went through various site content iterations. It its current form it provides links, search and information for small and medium start ups. It's current Alexa world wide ranking is 8212.
Here are some snap shots of Business.com wayback.archive.org
Another game where you try to goof off instead of doing work, while avoiding the boss. This one has nice graphics and a good selection of stuff to do while you are goofing off. My team is co-located with the customers, so we don't have much time to goof off. When the work was interesting, we never even wanted to goof off. However, I imagine that this type of thing runs rampant in the I.T. building where spirits must be low because they have sold themselves out.
Mission Statements are usually crafted or re-crafted at executive offsite meetings after there has been some kind of trouble that makes a company look unfavorable to the public or shareholders (i.e lead painted toys, e-coli burgers, insider trading before a poor quarterly report). They are supposed to give direction to the company, but more often than not they just leave regular employees scratching their heads trying to figure out if those three, all expense paid days in Hawaii for the "management team" were really worth having the the training budget cut for the 4th consecutive year.
I've been involved with creating mission statements for our department and our small group. Every time we have done it, it has been a complete and total waste of time. My employees think it's all BS as soon as they see it (they are smart that way), but my bosses want me to push the idea anyway, thinking that I can somehow convince them that this little sentence will make all of our work dreams come true. The problem is, most software developers can smell this type of thing from miles away, and if I try to push these things they will lose what little respect they still have for me.
Anyway, sometimes at lunch a few weeks ago I notices that a local mall fast food outlet had their mission statement printed on the wall. It got me on a tear to see if I could find other fast food Mission Statements.
Not every fast food company has the balls to post their mission statement right up on their web site (we've looked!), but some do.
A good one (like the following from Chick-Fil-A) looks something like this:
"Be America's Best Quick-Service Restaurant"
It's short, achievable, to the point, and makes perfect sense. It makes me want to work for them (or at the very least eat there...yum,...Chik-Fil-A!)
However, not all mission statements are created equal. Can you guess which national restaurant fast food chain calls this lofty and damned near impossible mission statment their own?
______ mission is "Deliver exceptional _____ dining experiences by building an organization where people are inspired to better their lives"
Wow. Better their lives. I mean, really? Which people? The ones scooping the reheated food into the paper containers, or the ones trying to eat it?
This corporate commercial for the recent United/Continental airline merger is a very good example of something that should have remained internal to the company. I saw it a couple months ago when my work sent me a short 1-day turn-around trip (made for a nice 18 hour day, thanks Styrofoam boy). This played in-flight before take-off, and it's a great example of installing "WTF?" in your customers. Very few people on any flight are interested in corporate integrations, or what will happen in the future. They want to know two things, and two things only:
1. Information on how will you make THIS flight better and more comfortable.
2. Assurance that the airplane they are sitting on will take off and land without incident.
Anything else is just a waste of time.
In this "game" you customize your "boss" with a name and company name , dress them up. then take revenge on them. That's it. Simple, yet effective. I don't think I have much else to say here, except that if you feel charitable, you could spend a session or two beating up on a guy that you name Styrofoam Boy.
Management Sucks Internets Scrapings for Friday, April 6, 2012. The world is filled with of bad companies, CEO's, and even employees...
Electronic Arts named "Worst Company in America", but doesn't give a shit -Forbes is reporting that EA is shrugging off this dubious title with quotes like this
"We’re sure that British Petroleum, AIG, Philip Morris, and Halliburton are all relieved they weren’t nominated this year. We’re going to continue making award-winning games and services played by more than 300 million people worldwide."
Nice company to keep, EA.
Twitter finally taking aim at actors who "spam-a-lot" - Time is reporting that Twitter is starting a campaign against users who create shitty social tools to blast everyone with their 140 character spam.
For some reason, Fox News hates the Chevy Volt? - AutoBlogGreen has an interesting article up about Fox news first saying that GM employees were "forced" to buy Volts, then correcting themselves, then just bashing the car anyway.
Hiring the Wrong CEO Ca have disturbing consequences - Forbes has an interesting article that warns against both short-term CEO selections and hiring friends into high places. Good read.
Scott Thompson, Yahoo CEO, after laying off 2000, decides its time to be a nice guy? - All Things D has the goods on this provocative story.
I wonder how many others there are out there? Bank CEO Admits to Robo-Signing Scandal - Check out the housingpredictor.com article.
Keith Olbermann Fired for "Being and Awful Employee" - Who could have seen that coming?
Bad Government Data kills the Pecan Grower's Market - The Wall Street Journal is reporting that errors in nut production for over seas markets has been playing havoc with domestic production and prices.
This is a great article that does not suck.
The traditional way we measure success for software development teams makes little sense. In I.T. here they have come-up with all sorts of ideas, from time tracking to bug counting, but none of it really takes into account the mix of creative and technical prowess it takes to create software. I like some of the ideas listed here.
5 interesting metrics for management software developers.
In this game you try to do as little work as possible. Click on your monitor to waste your work day and score points. Don't let your co-workers see you messing around, or you will lose points. The funny thing is, I think this is the type of game that managers "think" their employees want to play instead of doing work. Actually, if they gave us interesting work to do around here, we's rather to that than this!
Where should I start? I've been a supervisor at a major Fortune 500 company for about 10 years now. At that time, I was promoted by a friendly VP who was let-go a few months later. He was the last friendly VP I've ever known. Everyone they have brought-in since has been a darker and darker shade of evil.
For the past decade I have been a pseudo-manager at the lowest rung on the ladder. A bunch of guys report to me (guys who used to be my peers, which makes it much worse), but I'm still essentially a regular employee who has to manage and real work at the same time. I've worked very hard to get where I am, and the good news is, my customers (internal) love what I do. They are the best part of my job.
The company recently hired a new guy as my boss. He's is a silver spoon, trust fund baby from a U.C. school who has never had to struggle a day in his life. He's about 5 years younger than I, with about 1/2 the experience. However, in a perfect homage to Dilbert, he has "executive hair", which I'm sure is why he was hired. He has a personality that makes me think he was cut from a piece of styrofoam...so that's what I'll call him: Styrofoam Boy. My customers hate him. He spews I.T. speak whenever he sees them, and they neither understand it, nor do they think any of it is meaningful for their business.
So guess what I've found out? Management Sucks, at least in the place I am. I'm right in the middle. I have to do all the dirty work of a manager (performance reviews, dealing with irate internal customers, time tracking, etc.) but get very few of the real management perks (vendor lunches, off sites, any kind of power or respect, etc). One nice thing is this: since e company has outsourced most of my developers, I still get to program software from time to time, and try to do it every chance I get. It's the best part of my job: real, honest work. However, don't tell Styrofoam Boy, or he'll give me a few more Excel spreadsheets to fill out instead. Styrofoam Boy will never let me get ahead, as I'm from the last generation of I.T. people that "like to do" instead of "like to talk about doing", and there is no place for me other than right here, where I make my customers happy. I've been at this company far too long, so finding another job like this one will be very very hard. In a sense, I'm stuck right where I am.
This blog is my (almost) daily log of my thoughts on on management and dealing with the new class of "Business Analyst" I.T. employees, about things I find ridiculous about the business and I.T. world, and of things I find funny. There are also also a lot of things here to waste your time. For obvious reasons, I cannot use my real name, so please call me "middleman" as in Middle Manager.
Also, I'd like to thank my fine friends at 8bitrocket.com for hosting this site and giving me this platform so I can remain anonymous.
If you have anything to share, you can reach me here: middleman(at)managementsucks(dot)com