So That’s How Scotty Does It!

, , , , , | Working | July 18, 2018

(I am a database engineer in the late 1980s. My company has an application that requires about 24 hours to run a weekly report. One day my boss comes up to me and asks if I can make the report run faster. I look at the code and realize the report is written in an incredibly inefficient manner. I go back to the boss:)

Me: “I’ve got good news. I’m pretty sure I can make it run in 12 hours. It will take me about a week to get it ready.”

Boss: “That would be great. Please do it.”

(I spend about two hours and redo the report function and get it to run in 15 minutes. I then build in a timer that delays delivery for 12 hours. I use the week to get caught up on everything I never have time to do. My boss is delighted with the results. Six months later, my boss comes to me again:)

Boss: “We are really happy with your excellent work on speeding up the reports. Can you possibly make it go any faster?”

Me: “Maybe. It would take about a week to know for sure.”

Boss: “Please give it a try. This is your top priority.”

(I spent the week getting caught up again on a backlog of tasks I was never given time for, and on the last day of the week, I removed the timer and presented the new and improved report function to my boss, who was absolutely thrilled to get reports in 15 minutes. The boss never found out and considered me a miracle worker.)

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