So, I spent last week in a hotel near Dulles Airport in Virginia setting up a new network. Most things went great, but we had a vendor, whom we are paying a lot of money, crash and burn on a support call. In a fantastical way. I mean, it was like dealing with a telco. We managed to complete everything on time, I even got to visit the Air and Space Museum before my flight back. But the bad experience shook our confidence in the vendor. Badly.
I spent a lot of time upset over this . . . actually lost sleep in my disillusionment. I wrote up a list of stuff I was upset about, and on Monday I took some time at my own office to re-write a more professional list of things that I want addressed. I sent this off to the responsible parties, and immediately got calls back, which I did not want to take. We have established that they have until Wednesday to answer my concerns and restore confidence.
But the thing that sticks in my mind was when I checked my voicemail last night, was that shortly after I had sent my list of concerns off, was that the guy who called back, his voice had fear in it. Like I’d caught him in the cross-hairs. Granted, he probably has the most riding on this . . . but I want him to succeed, and this is something I tried to convey in my message, though I made it clear that we were entirely prepared to cut our ties with the vendor if I were not impressed . . .
There is a little gratification to be had in the knowledge that you have scared someone, because fear is a powerful motivator. But, things happen . . . support and communications screw up from time to time . . . I don’t want to hear from someone who is working from a place of fear, I want people who have the confidence that they can see a way out of the problem . . . fear has its place, I suppose.
Well, I hope things work out. While giving the vendor time to get their story straight, I have also lined up some alternatives.