Out of Overload

A Guide for Technical Managers

Chapter 2
Quick Start Guide

1. Project bound.
2. Information overload.

3. Growth issues.

4. Career issues are surfacing.
5. You design software.

6. Feel yourself getting agitated.
7. Youíre just busy.

Everyoneís situation is unique. Work pressures are seldom the same, and sources of overload can be quite different. The following Quick Start Guide allows you focus on your individual situation immediately.

After you examine the sections related to your dilemma, you should read through two other topics: Core Principles and Working Cycles. They address the details that make the system easier to use. For example, how to accelerate learning by leverage different times of the days. They also describe tricks for maintaining during those super-overloaded days.

Skim the following list of situations. The category that fits your overload condition should jump out at you. The location of each area is noted after the selection listings.

Quick Start Guide

Select the category that most accurately reflects your situation:

1. Project bound.

You are juggling far too many projects. It always feels like youíre on the edge with the possibility of everything falling apart. Start with the sections on: - Core principles. Chapter 3
- Multiple Missions. Chapter 4
- Working Cycles. Chapter 6

2. Information overload.

The amount of information and technology you have to assimilate is overwhelming. Start with the sections on: - Core principles. Chapter 3
- Modeling. Chapter 7
- Accelerated learning. Chapter 8

3. Business growth.

Your business is at a point where something has to change if you are to continue your success. Opportunity is there -- itís a matter of untangling the options, the market changes, and technical complexity to move in the right direction. Start with the sections on: - Core principles. Chapter 3
- Decision making. Chapter 10
- Opportunity management. Chapter 11

4. Career issues are surfacing.

Your options seem to be in opposition to each other. Itís either: low pay or high risk, old technology or retraining, management or pure technology. And with the rate of technology change, you feel you should act on these decisions soon. Start with the sections on: - Core principles. Chapter 3
- Modeling. Chapter 7
- Opportunity management. Chapter 11

5. You design software.

This one's a bit indirect, but here goes. If you are involved with software design, chances are that you're contributing to the overload levels in the high tech industries. It has to do with user levels and how it's easy to miss a particular user's practices. Check out the design suggestions in: - Software Design. Chapter 9

6. You feel yourself getting agitated.

Just considering all the things you have to do stops you in your tracks. It's overwhelming. Every once in a while you can feel panic stirring. Youíve been getting agitated more frequently and have less and less patience for othersí mistakes. Go to the section: - Stress guide. (Appendix A. - Not available in the on-line edition.)

7. Youíre busy.

Youíve got 20 minutes to look at these techniques, and itís unlikely youíre going to spend any more than that. Itís tempting to crack a joke about this response, but most technical managers know the feeling only too well. Go to the section on: - Core principles. Chapter 3

If thereís a problem with the Quick Start Guide, itís that life doesn't organize itself into neat categories. Technical managers often experience difficulty in several of these sections. If you find yourself with a variety of dilemmas, feel free to mix and match the principles. Donít limit your learning by forcing yourself into one profile and a single solution. Experiment with them all.


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