06 October 2006

Latest AT&L article

The Nov/Dec 06 issue of Defense AT&L is now available online (subscribers will get their copies in the mail in a few weeks).

As usual, Quaid and I have a politically incorrect article, specifically designed to push people's buttons, rattle cages and shine lights into dark places. The title is "It's All In The Talent,"and it features (among other things), a criticism of Jean Claude VanDamme, a drawing of a lady holding a monkey (shown here), and a transcript of an actual telephone call between Quaid and a talent scout from a leading New York City modeling agency (he called her, if you're wondering).

Here's a short excerpt for your reading pleasure:

The DoD’s Business Management Modernization Program and various similar efforts have had little measurable effect, perhaps because of their focus on revamping the system rather than reforming the people. Similarly, some leaders in Congress, out of an admirably generous desire to help make things better, are moving to assert more control over the defense acquisition system, an endeavor that even its supporters admit is likely to have mixed results.

In the same altruistic spirit of helpfulness, Norman R. Augustine, former chief executive of Lockheed Martin and a former Army under secretary, said, in the same New York Times article, that “what is needed most is to make it extremely difficult to start a new program,” which should not be until “the need is clear, the technology is there, and there is money to do the job.”

We think cutting off a person’s fingers is a strange way to get him or her to do better work. It’s not clear how additional controls will address the underlying problem. For that matter, we (and others) aren’t sure those particular actions will even address the symptoms.


Dick Field said...

Once again, Dan, you and Quaid have nailed it. So much of the stuff you guys write in DAT&L really resonates for those of us slogging through the process boonies, squinting for signs of someone who "gets it". I don't know if the DoD "gets it", but you guys are a rare and valuable asset to them. May your efforts in DAT&L go "too far" each and every time (and may your facilitating editor never leave).

Dick Field
DoD Civilian . . . and Talent
(for on camera and voice over, just contact my agent at http://www.donnabaldwin.com/)

Dan said...

Thanks, Dick! Our editor is really amazing, and the cool news is that she just changed hats, from contractor to govie, so I think her position is a bit more permant now (and she's got a bit more authority).

And we're working on a Risk Management article now, basically explaining that Risk Management is all about courage and judgement, not checklists and CYA.

We'll keep ya posted!

Gabe said...

It looks like the women is saying, "Yeah Rogue Project Leader. Here's my monkey."

Why don't you add a random caption generator for what she's saying. That would be funny.

"Hey everyone, here's my boyfriend Pap Louie. Whoops?! Sorry about that Louie."

"She was a dancing queen, young and mean with a monkey King, yeah yeah! You can dance, you can fly......."