Business /blog/business.html This is my (Markus Gattol) weblog. You are currently reading the category "Business" which is one of several categories on my weblog. In particular, this category is about business, finances, shares, management and all sorts of things/troubles I come across doing business. en-us Emacs Muse Globalization, is it Good or Bad? /blog/business.html#Globalization%2C%20is%20it%20Good%20or%20Bad%3F Most people say globalization is a bad thing. Funny thing is, when asked what globalization is, the very same person fails to provide us with an appropriate answer.

Do you know what globalization is? To be honest, I did not. I mean, sure, I thought I did but as it turns out, I really just had a basic idea and my judgment was clouded because of all the terrible things that happened to our economies during the last two years.

Now, at least, I know that globalization is not what I thought it was. Rather, I now think it is something I welcome, and if done right, will improve a lot of things for a lot of people. Go here if you want to read about what globalization is, and if it is all good or bad.

Markus Gattol Sun, 16 May 2010 00:00:00 BST /blog/business.html#Globalization%2C%20is%20it%20Good%20or%20Bad%3F
Offshore Financial Centres /blog/business.html#Offshore%20Financial%20Centres After we had the financial meltdown in 2008 and because we have never recovered since, most people think OFCs are bad. You do know what OFCs are yes? If not, read on...

Many people say/think, anything that goes into and comes out the financial service sector is evil by nature. Me? I think people should educate themselves and comprehend things before talking. If that were to be true, the world would be a quiet place ;-]

I am by no means a seasoned financial expert but at least I am trying understand what makes the wheels turning and even more so, what keeps them turning. One part in this puzzle certainly is to know a bit about OFCs (Offshore Financial Centres).

Markus Gattol Sat, 15 May 2010 00:00:00 BST /blog/business.html#Offshore%20Financial%20Centres
A Projectmanager's Nightmare /blog/business.html#A%20Projectmanager%27s%20Nightmare Being a project manager can either be a great thing or quite the opposite. It is all about how things develop from the very first beginning in a project.

If there is a clear distinction of responsibilities, a decent toolset (e.g. groupware, mailing lists, MUC (Multi User Chat), etc.) and common sense among all participants then this is already an excellent ground to start from. Honestly, I have never had this nor have I heard of any other project manager who has ever had this satisfying working environment.

The paradox thing is that the bigger and the more known a company seems to be, the more chaos is there to deal with... If only there was some sort of magic to guarantee that anyone has the same information at any times!... What am I talking about?

Well, this is how it often works: Up to 3000 or even more people, geographically distributed all over the globe, working in different time zones, work together on some big, long-term project. What kind of communication do they use? Mailing lists? No! The use email and phone.

Ever seen a receiver list 70+ receivers long? Ever dealt with 200+ emails a day? Ever got circulating emails in TOFU (Text Over, Fullquote Under) style that can be scrolled through for a few meters (!) until you see the initial message? Have you ever had to participate in a global conf call with 12+ participants for over 6 hours? All this is insanity as it happens on a daily basis with projects from fortune 500 corporations all over the world.

The other day I did some maths: The figures I came up with are frightening. Only for my department (Vienna, ~180 people) the cost overhead because of not using a simple mailing list is around 38.000 Euros per day! Try this within a normal-sized company e.g. 100 or less employees. Not going to work... plain and simple. As I said, it all boils down to one single fact: We need to ensure that anyone involved — external as well as internal staff — has the same information at any times! Plain and simple. Do it and your company saves tons of money, do not do it and you will not just waste money but even more dramatically, you will lose understanding and sooner or later control for/over the business.

So, being a project manager is mostly a pain in the ass simply because projects do not use the appropriate and state of the art tools (e.g. mailing lists, CMS (Content Management System), etc.).

Ask around, most project managers only stay because of the money. Their job creates a lot of frustration and wastes tons of money and they can mostly do nothing about it — if you are in your twenties and think you can convince a CEO on the other side of the globe of the bad situation, think again...

This person probably not even gets your emails because they are filtered out by some assistant and even if he/she does, there are around 200+ other emails every day he/she has to go through before he/she gets to your email. Unfortunately, this is reality...

Therefore, this goes out to all CEOs: Please please hire some FLOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) wizards or maybe three or so, provide them with the budget/hardware/hosting environment they need and tell them to get to grips with insanity and they will make the heavens open up and angles sing simply by putting some MUC in place and/or setting up some mailing list. ROI (Return On Investment) will arrive after 2 days (!) or even less.

Markus Gattol Tue, 17 Jun 2008 00:00:00 BST /blog/business.html#A%20Projectmanager%27s%20Nightmare