How to ruin Christmas Eve

Christmas at last. Every year at the same time, 12 whole months to prepare for the next attempt and reflect on the last one, yet the same things happen each year. Let’s look at it from a different perspective today. Let’s approach it from an IT professional‘s point of view….

In the best case, it all starts with the clarification of the remit: Criminally neglected at Christmas: Why do we do all this anyway? Christianity? Maybe. A time for reflection? Works too. Family and quality time together? Yes, that’s what it should be about, I imagine. Blood is thicker than water, but the snag is, you can’t choose your family. Maybe that’s part of the problem. Let’s look for another family, maybe your partner’s is more suitable to celebrate Christmas? But bringing whole families together is not necessarily a good idea. That can only go wrong.

Once the actual remit has been clarified, it’s time for stakeholder management. Let’s go through it. Who is the host? What’s for dinner? Are our beloved siblings coming? It’s okay to ask why the topic of partners and their “expiry date” is not taken more seriously; instead the same faces keep turning up. Nah, that’s too difficult for me. Plan all this beforehand? With all of them? Our company is currently going agile too. So here we go with the rough vision of nothing less than a perfect Christmas. This of course includes snow (damn, climate change) and pretty lights (damn, energy crisis) and small talk (bloody hell, refugee crisis and war and …). If the duck is a flop too, the whole business is deflated by the main course. Agile methods won’t help there. “Revise approach for dessert” is not likely to be much help to the host. But maybe it will cheer people up a little? After all, we still have something to eat. “Actually, do you have anything vegetarian? I forgot, little Johnny doesn’t eat meat any more.”

It’s good when the meal is over as well as the minefields of profound conversations that you somehow only manage to have at Christmas. That’s when you discover completely new sides – perhaps it would be advisable to have 1 or 2 feedback sessions during the year and see how things are going with the others’ annual planning. Always prepare everything, once again we have fallen into the un-agile trap. I’ll try again: we’ll just have a retro after the meal. And we have to involve the quieter ones. Oh, they don’t want to say anything? They could speak up for a change. Otherwise next year will be another disaster. Oh, is it 10 o’clock already? There used to be Christmas carols in the marketplace. I can’t sing, but let’s see who’s still hanging around the mulled wine stall. So, headlong flight on to the next party! Let’s talk about next year in good time, because it can’t go on like this every year.

Original text: MHA
English translation: BCO

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