We were hired several years ago by a client because management was very uncomfortable that people were wasting money on personal computers. The executive had frozen expenditures on personal computers until we completed the study. Our initial assessment concluded several things. First the reason people were spending so much on their own systems was the central organization would not help them and the central organization systems organization was complaining to their vice-president that things were out of control. We found no dialog existed between the user management and the systems group.
We recommended that we form a review group of second level managers and the head of systems to review all personal computer projects. We worked with the group initially to get the ball rolling and improve the dialog. The results were amazing and the relationship improved immediately. Things started to improve and many projects moved forward quickly. We were very pleased.
However within three months the head of systems took time off for bypass surgery. When he came back and unknown to me he had reverted to his old behavior. He wanted to control everything and used the excuse that we needed a Strategic Systems Plan to stop people from new projects. I was really surprised and proposed to help.
That was when we were blind sided by a consultant fed into the systems head’s agenda. That is the example I will detail in example #2.