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RE: Is this Needed? Dragging OT

From: Freeman, Donald <>
Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 14:19:51 -0400
Message-ID: <>

We have a number of consulting firms in the building and some are better than others. There isn't anything magical about being a consultant or an FTE. I consulted for 10 years. Responsibility goes with authority. I won't accept responsibility unless I have the authority to take the actions that will bring about the proper result. I wouldn't ask anyone else to either.

Our present on-site consulting firm (very large) is doing an excellent job on my project although on other projects for my state government I have heard rumours of problems. I am just as likely to blame the government for problems as I am the consultant.

The DBA consultant who's methods I am questioning is also very impressive. He has demonstrated repeated good judgement, excellent planning and execution. But nobody knows everything. Only on one other occasion when he recommended we add memory to a sluggish server did my alarm bells go off. He might have done it just to get them off his back for awhile. We added about 5G of memory to a Windows server for a total of 7G and, you guessed it, it didn't help. And it never did get configured properly to begin with. I was pretty openly vocal and got to explain my theory to the director since this application was almost unusable.

I made a lot of people look bad over that including my full-time newbie co-worker who was assigned to work with this guy, the dba manager who signed off on it (sql server guy), all of the consulting management staff who backed their guy. After that I think they actively tried to hide what they were working on from me<g>. I think I was still on probation then and my consultant had about 15 years of DBA experience. I didn't get anybody coming around my desk saying, "Good call!" I got a whole lot of cold shoulder. Within a couple of days they cleaned up some application code and the problem was resolved.

Don Freeman
Database Administrator 1
Bureau of Information Technology
Pennsylvania Department of Health
717-783-8095 Ext 337

-----Original Message-----
[]On Behalf Of Johnson, George Sent: Friday, October 28, 2005 12:12 PM
Subject: Is this Needed? Dragging OT

        Not wishing to drag this way off topic....

        In all seriousness is this the general perception of contractors across the globe? That we are a tolerated resource but ideally the world might be a better place without us. As a contractor in the UK, maybe I've been lucky but I haven't run into that many fly-by-night cowboys, obviously one or two that think they know all and shout louder to cover their obvious lack of knowledge. Personally I feel it's a requirement for me, as a contractor, to always document everything, always do the best you can and always listen to what is required, offering my opinion, not what I consider to be a "fact". At the end of the day, if the employer is not happy, I am out on the street at the end of the month looking for new work, if don't pull my weight.

        Just idle curiosity on a Friday afternoon...

-----Original Message-----
From: Norman Dunbar [] Sent: 27 Oct 2005 7:55
Subject: RE: Is this Needed?

Morning Chris,


>> ..can you say "responsibility" and "consultant" in the same
sentence? ;o)

I'm a contractor, I take full responsibility for all my actions.

How's that ?


Norman Dunbar.
Contract Oracle DBA.
Rivers House, Leeds.

Internal : 7 28 2051
External : 0113 231 2051

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Received on Fri Oct 28 2005 - 13:23:03 CDT

Original text of this message