Monday, December 22, 2008

Rolling Off

I recently experienced the joy of rolling off of a project. An experience filled with many emotions. Sorrow for bidding good bye to new friends. Excitement for what lay ahead in the next project. Stress for trying to land the next project. Additional stress for also tieing up all loose ends with the short time left (finishing the object just right; catching up on the documentation; the dreaded knowledge transer to the consultants who remain). Those last 2 weeks just fly by.

There are several housekeeping tasks that I always try to do.

1) Try to get contact information from fellow consultants and the employees. I always like to be able to contact people that I have worked with in the past. They could refresh your memory of an object that you are trying to recall. They may provide leads for new projects (and visa versa). Sometimes it's nice just to say hi.

2) Make a copy of the code, documentation, emails, etc. of the objects you worked on. There are many, many occasions when you are trying to think of the way that you solved a problem in the past. It's nice to be able to look it up.

3) Remember to take all of your personal effects home. There is no going back for your favorite "#1 Programmer" mug. The remaining team will promise to mail it to you, but for some reason it never happens.

4) Remember to return all company property. It may be tempting grab that power strip that you could use, but its not worth it. Your reputation could be damaged over such a small thing (even if by accident).

Once you turn in your badge and your gun, there is no going back. Leave with head held high, smiles, and a firm handshake. With any luck, you just might be invited back down the line for another project.

Glenn Allen
Syracuse NY