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Work is a Four Letter Word

Work has been really aggravating lately.

I am working with a client who is kind of a big prick, which is surprisingly rare in the world of automation, at least in my experience.

But the bigger problem is that myself, and my coworkers assisting me on this job have dropped the ball more than once, which only fuels his fire.

We had an initial build that didn’t work because we missed a rather important detail. I’m not sure why we moved forward with the design without knowing this piece of information, but we did and it got built and delivered to the customer with a major flaw. It is my fault because the question was posed to me and I in turn did ask the client. But I never got a response and quite frankly forgot about it. I still have to wonder why the person who asked the question initially just let it go and designed the piece anyway.

So we had to redesign on an extremely short timetable and we did and I thought what we came up with was good. But for some reason the client was expecting something other than what we delivered and now we have to tweak the design again and now we will miss our deadline.

The most frustrating part of the whole thing is that, while I don’t do much right at work, one thing I make sure I do is send over technical drawings of the system we are proposing before I ever quote them. I want everyone to be on the same page before money changes hands and things are built. I find this to be very useful and very often the design will change more than once based on conversations over these drawings.

Well in this case I initially sent drawings over and my client said they looked great. In fact he was very excited about it. He sent it out to his whole team, probably 9 people to review it and no one said a thing about what would later become glaringly obvious problems.

And then on the redesign not only did I send him a drawing of the system and he said it looked good, but I also talked to him and several of his colleagues on a conference call to go over any questions they might have and they had a few and we addressed them and tried to make sure they understood fully what we were doing. And yet I get there today and have to hear about how we failed, again.

It is embarrassing to be so wrong twice in a row on the same job. But even more so it is frustrating because if he would have just honestly reviewed the drawings I sent him all of this could’ve been avoided right off the bat.

But of course, not only is it our fault as a company, but it is my fault specifically as a professional. I’m willing to take the blame, it is my project and it went up in flames. But man would I like some help from the customer sometimes.