Throwback Thursday: Scope creep

The methodology that dares not speak its name.

This company decides that it needs a better way of managing its software development, reports an IT pilot fish there.

“We went out and reviewed the major methodologies on the market and selected one that was state of the art from one of the large accounting firms,” fish says.

The new methodology is very nice, complete with online components, handbooks and a very active national presence. And it quickly demonstrates its value for software projects.

In fact, fish’s CIO decides that the methodology is so slick it can be used to manage any project.

The CIO begins pushing it to all other areas of the company to use. He pushes hard, praising the system and touting its results.

Very soon, it’s at the point where no managers even want to meet with him — and eventually, the CIO is let go.

The methodology still works fine for software development. But now, fish and his cohorts are forbidden even to mention the name of the methodology.

We worked hard to come up with other names and spent a lot of effort changing our work papers so that they did not even show the name of the product,” says fish.

“Eight years later, it continues to be a useful tool — but we have to act like we thought up the stuff on our own.”

Sharky couldn’t think this stuff up on his own. So send me your true tale of IT life at You can also subscribe to the Daily Shark Newsletter and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.


Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.

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