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Thursday, 5 July 2012

Urgency over efficiency - A cause of Stress

Human beings, irrespective of their profession have always been affected by trends from various echelons of society. Reading news articles, especially from Scientific sources that are on the lines of "We probably found the Higgs Boson" (ref: CERN press release today)  or "We have evidence of extraterrestrial microbial life" (ref: Mars Mission) has been quite frequent of late. Scientific method demands verification, the possibility of an antithesis and the dismissal of the antithesis based on facts or conjectures that can be repeated.

The new trend is not restricted to scientific articles, but also to Consumer Electronic products, the arena of Embedded Software Systems I work on. The pressure today is to deliver solutions to customers almost at 1/3rd the duration they were being delivered in the prior year.

This is a clear indicator of the aggressive motivation of growth. This "unhealthy" phenomenon is further exacerbated by economics seemingly inclining in favor of asymmetric or asymptotic growth patterns of material value generators in society.

In this world, where the everyday rush is not unlike a gold rush, it has a significantly "unhealthy" effect on both the perception of services provided and products delivered. A new acceptance of the 'incomplete' solution has began to dominate sectors including the automotive sector. Telecom companies have resorted to solutions like Android, where the com.phone.android (the core phone application is bound to restart, and is not as rigorously tested as prior.)

On the one hand we have a lot of momentum on increasing our awareness to the Environment and the Hazards we generate. Yet, the root cause of this lies in the want and the need to deliver ahead of the prior benchmark, oftentimes without sound reason or at times against reason.

Having been a hyper-workaholic, I can easily associate my habits with the work culture that has impinged our society. I have grown to understand that a calmer, consistent, measured and sound approach based on factual reasoning has a higher probability to succeed than a quick hack. This is something that has to be imbibed by entire companies as part of their culture and thereafter entire societies or groups of associated people.

An approach combined with commitment and the ability to reason and resolve the root cause of issues can benefit everyone in the long run and relieve several people in the chain of work from unnecessary stress. This also has to be done with the understanding that we, humans, are not machines, and have our biorhythms that are not always aligned with the day/night or a company's working hour routine. A solution that benefits both can easily be worked out considering that the result will always be a win-win.

I would personally be interested in hearing different thoughts on the same, especially on methods to curb the 'urgency' syndrome in the larger part of our responsibility to society and the environment itself.