Monday, March 06, 2006


I just read this article about how our new CEO is suppose to "clean up Boeing."

From where I stand in Boeing, this article is a little off-base. It says that Boeing and former McDonnel-Douglas employees are at odds with each other. The only part of "the inside of Boeing" that I really see is the IT part... and I haven't ever seen this war. In my group, we have DBAs from everywhere in Boeing: Puget Sound, Arizona, California, and Pennslyvania... we all seem to get along just fine. In fact, while I'm on vacation at the end of March down in Phoenix, I'm planning on visiting the other DBAs down there... just for fun.

Now, on to another point... how much cleaning is too much? My group is having huge budget cuts apparently, and its really cramping my style. Of all the stuff I've done in Boeing so far, 3 "special projects" really stick out in my mind as awesome. But, I don't get to do any of them anymore. I've already written about one of them. So, what are the other 2?
1) Teaching the intern class. My group has to maintain a certain percentage of billable hours (yes, exactly like lawyers). Any time that we work that can't be billed directly to another group/customer (i.e. training, attending a conference, teaching the intern class) is considered overhead... and therefore is bad and makes Boeing IT look less efficient.
2) Having an intern. There is still a possibility that my group will get an intern (or 2)... but the only way we'll be able to do that is if we fund them completely out of our overhead budget (which is significantly smaller than last years).

So, yes... Jimmie Mac (a.k.a. W. James McNerney Jr.) has probably improved the bottom-line at Boeing, but at what cost? Work is getting less "cool" by the budget-cut. No CII and no interns can make a day at Boeing dull as hell.
Maybe I'm aiming my crosshairs a little too high here... I don't know. Maybe my woes are being caused by someone/thing lower down the org-chart.

--- UPDATE ---
I had a discussion with (one of) my second level manager todays. The problem is over her head... so maybe I wasn't aiming too high. She did offer up some good info on possible ways to solve the budgeting of money in our group (300+ people) though. I was impressed by her thoughts on the problems and solutions in our org. And, my first level manager figured out how I can keep working my Data Architecture job, while still being a DBA (Boeing likes to keep skills segregated... but thats probably a whole other blog post). All-in-all... a good day with managment.

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