[consulting] Returning to a solution
domenic at workhabit.com
Mon Aug 10 18:41:51 UTC 2009
Bill Fitzgerald wrote:
>> You're talking from the perspective of yourself here, as a
> Only partially. I would much rather work with a developer/shop who is
> actively developing useful code, rather than one who is actively
> talking about how they are sooo good at developing useful code.
> We serve our clients more effectively by pointing out the difference.
I would abstract this concept even further -- "useful" code (for a
client) is that code which solves their business needs. So in this
sense, I do agree with you: I'd prefer to hire a consultant/shop that
has a history of solving problems and driving business value (aka,
actively develops useful code). A certification by itself doesn't speak
to this important point, and is one of the very real problems in the
market -- it's pretty easy to find a skilled programmer, but *much* more
difficult to find one that can contextualize the work that he/she does
in terms of business value. The more I consider your point the more I agree.
>> A skill that we as consultants must develop (whether we agree about
>> certification or not) is the ability to empathize with our client
>> base and predict their needs. If the *market* (our clients)
>> demonstrates this need, it will have to be filled.
> Or, we can articulate why this is an artificial and contrived measure
> that only demonstrates proficiency at passing tests, as opposed to
> solving real-world problems.
Or, we can mitigate the "study to pass a test" problem by taking control
of and developing a certification program of our own from the beginning
to create a test of value (see: Cisco certs)
> The notion that the "market" is an abstract thing working of its own
> volition is a myth that needs to be punctured. People make up markets,
> and people shape them. We can also help shape the terms within which
> we work.
Sure, this is a concept that's been around for a good half-century if
not longer. Ultimately it's self-interest that drives the market (and
the aggregate population that composes it). If it's in the clients' best
interest to reject the concept of a cert, then they will reject it (I
think your argument at the top, Bill, is a good reason a client might
choose to reject it for example).
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