2002 - 2003
unemployment led me to strike out on my own.
drafted by a former coworker to work with this company and get
them out of the"two-kids in a garage" mode of operations
and into productivity. Basically, it was a reprise of the role
I played with Metro. The company had no process for managing projects,
no process for developing software, no process for quality assurance,
no process for delivering the product, no process for supporting
the product, and no budget to implement any of it.
I am a
firm believer in providing only as much process as the stage of
corporate development can bear. The mistake most companies make
is either to provide no process at all, or immediately attempt
to implement the processes in place at Microsoft. Companies need
to grow their processes in step with the maturity of the company
Communications was just coming out of the start up stage. They
needed simple processes. They did not have time to stop and learn
complicated procedures while trying to live with explosive growth.
They were smart enough to know that they needed some process.
The package I gave them was tailored to the relative simplicity
of the organization at that point. Yelling down the hall still
worked as an effective means of coordination at the tactical level,
but the strategic decisions had to be committed to a process.
Cone Behavioral Health
my period of unemployment, I would often have lunch with my wife
where she works at Moses Cone Behavior Health Hospital. I got
to know the staff, and also became aware of a problem they were
having billing patient assessments and tracking the hours spent
on doing patient assessments. I took this as an opportunity to
re-sharpen my business analyst and programming skills and to become
better acquainted with MS-Access.
assessment process has a complicated set of business rules that
is based on the facility in which the assessment is done, whether
it is in or out of network, the time of day and day of the week
in which the assessment was done, and who did the assessment.
The end product had to track who did what when and in the end
produce a billing invoice to the facility, and a time card charge
for payroll. I was able to produce a summary report for the billing,
and a spreadsheet directly importable into payroll for the time
did some volunteer work at the hospital. As I was unemployed,
I conducted a weekly one-hour session with the patients on how
to deal with the trauma of unemployment, and how to organize and
conduct a search for the next job. I figured I had a lot of experience
and was an expert in the field, so I might as well share it.