New Year, New Crap

I think I picked a perfect time to go independent and incorporate my own business…

The last couple months at work have been…. interesting…. to say the least. First off, I was volunteered to head up a project integrating all the disparate SharePoint sites my team and our counterparts have been using for the last 5+ years now because someone higher up the food chain decided it would be a good idea to combine all the regional teams into one large enterprise-wide team. There are several problems. First of all, all the teams evolved in radically different directions since their inception, and as such, a lot of the information we have conflict with each other, to say nothing about the fact that we’re spread out across, and have to provide coverage for, six time zones. Oh yes, and it gets better, we’re now required to provide support for agencies that we’ve never dealt with before and have only come in to the fold of support kicking and screaming for the simple fact that they had their own gig, and it worked rather well for them.

Since I’m doing the SharePoint side of things, I tried my best to get a single person from each team within the Matrix to come on board and help since it’d be better to have someone actually within that team already instead of having to use a bloodhound and Ouija Board to hazard a guess at what they were doing, especially since all the SharePoints were locked down tighter than a nun’s habit. This process alone was like herding cats, so instead of just waiting, I decided to seek forgiveness instead of permission and begian working on the site with or without the input of the other teams. It seemed to do the trick, surprisingly enough, and as of about a month ago, I had people come in from the other groups to help. Not that it was necessarily a good thing.

It was more a case of “Hey you, go do this” without any regard to whether they had any actual experience in making even the most basic web pages, let alone a cohesive SharePoint site to be used nationally. I had to do quite a bit of hand holding with some people, since of all the folks that were now on the team, only one other person had any SharePoint experience to speak of. And not helping matters was that a $divisionChief who had a “I need this done yesterday” type attitude, inserted himself into the team as well and had his own ideas on what he wanted to have accomplished.

Thankfully, about 90% of the stuff I had already done, he ended up liking, and he decided to use what I had done as the template for the other teams to do their thing as well. The only problem is, he had his own schedule in mind, and no clue as to how long things would take, the permissions involved, etc. Something even as simple as updating an Excel spreadsheet involved me getting with the SharePoint admins because for some ungodly reason, they never added the website itself to the “Trusted View” section. The list goes on, but you get the idea.

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