The performance of the production process trumps the performance of the product it produces.
If you don't read and heed this concept, you are going to find yourself perpetually frustrated. What I mean by this is, that we (performance weenies) are focused on the speeds and feeds of the bits and bytes associated with the technology being produced, whereas most companies these days are forced by Wall Street to be more focused on the performance and cost of their internal management processes.
I said the same thing on page XX of the Preface to my 1998 book, The Practical Performance Analysts:
"Management no longer focuses on the speed of the product as much as the speed of producing the product. Nowadays, production performance matters more than product performance."
I believe this is truer today than it was 10 years ago. Here are some reasons why:
- Many hi-tech companies have offshored their engineering while keeping middle and upper management local. Latest example: Google goes to Poland
- There are substantial tax incentives for USA companies to go offshore, and then ask Congress for more H-1B visas
- There is a financial incentive to charge the customer (possibly you) for performance upgrades
- The Dilbertization of the IT workplace
Is it any wonder then, that you don't get a warm reception from upper management? The odds are stacked against you, and the stack goes all the way back to Wall St. Don't even think about fighting that war. The only battles worth fighting, in my view, are the ones that employ guerrilla-style tactics.
Ironically, as I explain in my classes, this is where performance analysis really started, viz., with Frederic Winslow Taylor, the original performance analyst (anal-ist?) who introduced "time and motion" studies on human production in assembly lines and office environments of the early 1920s.
Oh, in case you're wondering about the title, it's an Aussie-ism. There is no good or smooth end of a pineapple.