Friday, May 04, 2007

Synergy and CMM Compliance

I just noticed today a discrepancy in my thinking.

Synergy ( ) for those who don't know, is a religious concept. At least it was until quite recently - the later half of the 20th century. Synergy has to do with cooperation between God and Man. It is tied to the protestant conflict between works and grace. That is to say, Synergy is the Orthodox Theological concept that has been around since the 400s but was elaborated upon by Orthodox Theologians in the 15th century, that solves the problem that protestants and others have with balancing works with Grace.

Well in modern times it is used to discuss business dynamics. But never mind that. Forget about that for a while.

I've discovered today a discrepancy in my thinking.

My job is to milk the requirements out of project management, and then ensure that they live up to them. It is very scientific. X + Y is supposed to end up equalling Z. If it doesn't equal Z, then I press for resolution or redefinition. If management wants to end up making X + Y equal R instead, that's fine. But the situation has to be resolved.

So much to point out: my job is very scientific in nature, and leaves little to mysticism. However, I'm really good at my job because of my mystical nature. That is to say: if there is any possible way that X + Y can be perceived to not equal Z, I will find it. That's what I'm good at.

Well, for years I have been saying a prayer for my business as I enter the business each morning. I actually secretly bless the place with the sign of the cross before I enter (at least I do when nobody is standing around watching - which is most of the time.)

I happen to know that most of my coworkers, including the founder of our company are Christians. I know that many of them probably also pray for the success of our company.

Well, recently at Church I heard a story that made me shudder. There was a guy, an Orthodox Christian who had a business partner who was writing software and couldn't quite get the darn software to work. He finally gave up hope at getting the software to work, and stood before his icon and said a prayer that the software would work, and went back to it and it suddenly worked just fine.

Well, I cringed when I heard that story. I don't believe in it.

I can envision in my mind's eye someone praying that their code will work, and then all of a sudden the Holy Spirit enables them to make sense of things, and they find what is wrong, and fix it. But I can't envision God stretching forth his hand upon that computer and re-writing the code for this poor developer, and having it suddenly work.

So, then today I asked myself: WHY?

When I look at life's circumstances, I am often amazed at how succesful my company is for all the shortcuts it takes. Well, it is actually "miraculous" that everything doesn't break down, and the company fall off a cliff into the abyss of tech companies that "didn't make it."

So, well, actually, maybe it IS a miracle!

Somehow, even though I say a prayer for my business every morning, it has never entered my wildest dreams before that God might be helping us out. Somehow, that thought doesn't seem "fair" to me. And yet, why is it that I'm always praying for this place anyway?

It all breaks down to synergy. I have to do my part, and God will do His part. I really think that I have to do everything I can, everything I'm supposed to do, to make sure that our company's software works correctly (from start to finish.) But, in spite of my persistence in being the QA Guru that can break anything that can possibly be broken, I need to remember that God actually does perform miracles, and extends His grace to all who ask.

That's a little bit difficult to live with. If I lower my expectations at all (and trust that God will make it all work out) I'm afraid I will fail in performance of my duties. And yet at the same time, where is faith?

In the end I think I have to keep on going the same path that I've always gone. Yet, deep down inside now, I think I will be a little bit more thankful to God for his sustenance. For keeping us from dropping off that cliff.


P.S. Now, back to Disneyland and Communism...