common time-management mistake: rack & stack

Brandt, Ralph ralph.brandt at
Fri Feb 17 13:54:18 UTC 2012

I think it was Miagi in Karate Kid that stressed balance.  The CTO who
is NEVER out of his cage is dangerous, likewise the one that is never
available is also.  It is keeping in touch with what is happening at all
levels that makes him valuable.  If there is one thing that American
Management misses, it is that.  The GROWING companies almost always have
management that is active, visible and accessible - top to bottom.  The
ones that are dying are not.  The same goes for union leaders who are
really pseudo-management.  The senior technicians are no different than
management, they need broad focus but they must also be able to take the
magnifying glass and look at the current situation.  A network engineer
who cannot do both is not living up to his job description.

Ralph Brandt
Communications Engineer
HP Enterprise Services
Telephone +1 717.506.0802
FAX +1 717.506.4358
Email Ralph.Brandt at
5095 Ritter Rd
Mechanicsburg PA 17055

-----Original Message-----
From: Jared Mauch [mailto:jared at] 
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2012 8:36 AM
To: Brandon Butterworth
Cc: nanog at
Subject: Re: common time-management mistake: rack & stack

On Feb 17, 2012, at 3:17 AM, Brandon Butterworth wrote:

>> I have noticed that a lot of very well-paid, sometimes
>> well-qualified, networking folks spend some of their time on "rack &
>> stack" tasks, which I feel is a very unwise use of time and talent.
> It's not a waste, it's therapeutic, breaks the monotony of a desk
> job, you get a bit of exercise. Doing something mindless can help
> clear your thoughts, engineering yoga.

	+1 I find this myself, it's useful to do this, as it is to sit
in with the operations team and other groups (even finance) to
understand what other groups need/require.  I've often found that
someone is working around a problem they didn't know you could solve
(easily), or is doing a large amount of manual labor when there is an
API, etc.

	Perspective is good.  I also do other work that certainly isn't
a complete use of my talents that benefits others (e.g.: chaperone a
field-trip at school).  These are not without merits, but I do know I
have my faults in perhaps reading (and responding) to NANOG too much
when I should be engaged in more worthwhile tasks.

>> Imagine if the CFO of a bank spent a big chunk of his time filling up
> That'd be a good idea, it's too easy to become remote from reality.
> obviously you need the right balance - s/big//

	- Jared

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