Why I do what I now do at the office…

or “One way my life changed in  2002”  – Some names have been changed to protect the innocent (and all those that are not me….). That probably wasn’t necesary, but there’s no need for competitors to Google the comany name and find company mission statements… 🙂 So, for those who know the name, I am not working with Petra’s former lead singer Greg X. Volz – any resemblance of names be they fictional or real is purely intentional yet inconsequential.

Company Mission Announcement

Today [as founder, president, co-owner, and name sake of the company], I’d like to announce the creation of a new group within [our company] which is being charged to lead a very important mission. Specifically, the “[Software] SWAT Team” is being reorganized and re-chartered to focus on [Windows product] system installations – their quality and efficiency. I believe improvement in this last area is vital to our company’s future and want to take time in this email to give the entire staff an understanding as to why.
[..]
Our mission as a company is to reduce what it costs to install and support [our Windows POS system]. We’ve done similar things in the past with other products and it is now essential to make this happen with [our Windows product]. Here are some specific points to my vision for the mission:

  • Specifically, I’m calling on our company to cut the amount of time it takes us to install a [site] to ¼ of what it is today. And this needs to be done without reducing the quality we deliver to the customer. If anything, I expect such efforts to increase quality and customer satisfaction.
    We want to make our installations “plug and play” in the field. This means that we are 100% set up before we ship and all of our time at the site is spent training. Installation is done here, not at the site. If we go to the site it should be for training.
  • I envision us establishing proven/standardized ways to set up and install systems. This likely includes documented best practices and tools (like a “wizard”) to automate such setups. Our install team needs better tools and processes.
  • This project will take time and no doubt will be refined for years to come. That said, it is vital that we get about it. I expect us to have made demonstrable improvement by the end of this calendar year.

Making it Happen

This mission is for the entire company. Indeed I expect it to affect every aspect of our organization. But to lead this effort, we’re reorganizing and re-chartering our “[Software] SWAT team”. Brian Layman and [Greg X. Volz] will constitute this team and will take charge of the mission for achieving our objectives. Together they will answer to [Steve Taylor] as part of the deployment group. Here is some background on these key players in our mission to improve:

  • Brian Layman has been a programmer with our product development team since he joined us in 1998. For the past six months, Brian has helped in the [company’s] telephone support department. This mixed background gives Brian a unique perspective on the challenges and solutions in improving our installation and support techniques for [our software].
  • [Greg X. Volz] started with [us] in 1996. He first served as part of our [DOS product] installation and support team and later was promoted to coordinate our original [Windows Software] beta support team. Since the merger of [Windows Software] support with the main telephone support group, [he] has served with [Steve Taylor] as part of the [Software] SWAT team working as an interface between support and deployment.

Again, this team will have the chief responsibility of delivering this mission — but they will need the help and cooperation from many departments to be successful. This includes QA, Telephone Support, Marketing, and R&D. Our existing installation team in particular has already played a big role in taming the new beast of [Windows Software] installation. [Others] have already made important strides to get us to the level we are at today. I expect these folks will play a major part in our future improvements.

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