What would you consign to Rm101?

David Taylor

inside track

Welcome to the darkest column of them all. Welcome to IT room 101 - a sinister celebration of my 101st...

David Taylor

inside track

Welcome to the darkest column of them all. Welcome to IT room 101 - a sinister celebration of my 101st column. What would you consign to the fires of hell? And remember, I said what, not who!

We have only a few moments, and 500 words, to destroy forever our biggest obstacles, challenges, and hassles, so let's get burning. Here's a suggested top 10.

10. All those useless manuals from the training courses you never did anything with. I know they stand as a testament to your policy of lifetime learning, but be honest, have they also led to lifetime action? Your shelves were beginning to buckle under the weight of all that paper anyway.

9. All those posters hanging around the office telling us all to be motivated, and to take a pride in our work. True motivation comes from within, not from an A3 cartoon character. If you can't burn them, hang them upside down.

8. Clocking-in machines are a testament to a past that has thankfully passed. There is not one single reason for keeping them, beautiful to look at, though they may be.

7. Dispense with drinks machines that pretend to be so sophisticated they can store 500 different varieties, when we know that whatever we press we always get the same muck!

6. Invitations to tender are a sadistic means of getting back at suppliers. No one reads the forms when they're filled out anyway, let alone bases any decisions on them! (Supplier Contracts just survive, as we need something to take home for our children to draw on).

5. All TLAs (three-letter acronyms), in particular BPR, but also anything beginning with ISO, it's all good, combustible stuff.

4. Competency assessment forms should be replaced with a dartboard. Actually, on second thoughts, file them - in a year you will cry with laughter at the way we used to measure talent, skill and human potential by a multiple choice, emotional quiz.

3. Do away with your office. Be visible: it is not only the way of future leaders, it is also the fastest route to that magic thing called charisma. The invisible man lacked a certain, shall we say, presence. So strip it down and do it today - we need the wood to keep the flames alive.

2. Out also should go Service Level Agreements. No one really cares how you perform, it is how they think you are performing that counts. The days of boring, percentage-based IT performance are dead, forever.

1. And finally annual budgets. Anyone still doing them is living in the last century. We simply cannot plan more than three months ahead, if we are to be fast, flexible and fit enough to survive in this new business age.

That should clear out a lot of paper, unnecessary work and frustration. And by the way, before you write in, while I say burn, I mean, of course, recycle. After all, over the past few years, our companies have perfected it - to the art of genius.

David Taylor's Inside Track, a provocative insight into the world of IT in business, is out now. The book is the latest in the Computer Weekly Professional Series, published by ButterworthHeinemann: 01865-888180

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