Books written by Ray Sullivan

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Project: Evil – The Project Close Out Meeting part 2

Project: Evil – The Project Close Out Meeting part 2

 ‘OK, it’s your train set,’ huffed Brian, scratching a new matrix on the opposite wall, wondering how he was going to manage to bring the part completed project review matrix with him when they escaped.  ‘Right, let’s start with project definition.  What would success look like?’ he asked a meeting numbed to silence.
‘How about not being in gaol?’ suggested someone, eventually.
‘Great,’ said Brian, scratching it on the matrix.  ‘So, ideas for escape?’ he added.
‘I prefer a tunnel,’ said one of the henchmen.
‘I’m frightened of enclosed spaces,’ complained a voice from down the corridor.
‘And I’m frightened of heights,’ suggested another voice.
‘How come that’s a problem?’ asked Brian, trying to keep up with the ideas.
‘We’re on the fourth floor,’ answered the voice.  Brian had to concede there were issues.
‘OK, we probably need to set up a working group to determine an escape strategy. What about resources?’  Again there was silence before a lone voice advised that, hello, they were in gaol. Brian flicked through the manual for guidance. ‘Right, for starters, we’ve all got skills we can add to the project.’
‘Like what?’ asked O’Feld.  Daw was on this.
‘Thieves, liars, killers, thugs,’ he suggested.  Brian started to get excited as he scratched the list into the wall.
‘So we’ve got the makings of a Governance Team,’ he reported.  ‘Any other skills?’
‘We’ve got Froshdu,’ suggested the Facilities Lead. ‘He could probably eat us out of here.’  That sounded feasible.  Brian realised he’d jumped the gun in listing the resources, so he back-tracked a few pages.
‘What about finance?  There’s no point starting a project we can’t afford,’ he said.
‘We usually do,’ observed O’Feld, trying to catch the Finance Lead’s eye through the bars of their respective cells.  ‘How much do we have?’ he shouted across the corridor.  The Finance Lead shrugged his orange jumpsuit off and pulled his underpants out, rummaging inside for a few seconds before pulling out a handful of cigarettes.
‘About thirty snouts and a packet of aspirin, all negotiable currency inside these places,’ he announced with some pride: he’d arranged this collection personally.
‘What about the thirty five thousand pounds we smuggled in?’ asked O’Feld.
‘That’s what I used to get the snouts.  I traded the dynamite we found stuck in the folds of Froshdu’s body for the drugs,’ he crowed.  Froshdu howled as he remembered the snack he’d been saving being taken from him.  O’Feld seemed satisfied, but Brian was a little unsure.
‘I get the drugs thing – it’s suitably despicable for O’Feld Megalomaniac Industries – but cigarettes?  That’s a little edgy even for us, isn’t it?’
‘Put it on the risk register as a moral hazard,’ suggested Daw, throwing a spare nail across to Brian as his own was wearing down.  Brian looked around his cell for a spare wall to start the risk register on.
‘OK, so we’ve got funding, we’re going to form an escape strategy working group, governance is sorted and we now have a risk register,’ he said, realising that already the project was exceeding most public sector efforts in terms of compliance.  ‘I think we’ve made a good start here,’ he said, pulling a loose brick out of his cell wall, revealing a bright, sunny day outside the prison.  O’Feld looked at the gap where the brick had been and then at Brian as he sat down on his cot.
‘What the hell are you doing, Brian?’ he asked.  Brian put the nail down carefully before answering; it amazed him that this organisation had managed to build an empire with such little formal understanding of project administration.
‘I’m writing up the minutes,’ he said, adding, ‘I’ll pop the brick round later once I’ve finished writing the first draft.’  Then he looked at the hole in the wall before continuing, ‘I’d like the loose bricks in my wall fixing if we’re going to stay here for a while,’ he said, scratching away at the minutes.  ‘I’ll put it down as an action for the Facilities Lead,’ he said.
Inside Brian was excited: he was leading another project, and this one looked like it could run for years.  He popped his head to his bars.  ‘Unless anyone has something for AOB, can I suggest we reconvene next Friday?’ he asked, to general agreement.

The End


The characters, companies and places referred to in Project: Evil are fictitious and any resemblance to people, companies, businesses or places is entirely coincidental.

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