THE invitation last week for the public to purchase horses imported for the DSH races may have been tempting for some, and perhaps not for others, judging by social media posts and views of some public commentators. Even though we may want to bet on the winning horse, do we want to purchase the horse? As someone whose middle name literally means ‘lover of horses’ I also pondered what horse ownership might mean to an average person, notwithstanding the invitation by the director of the Royal Saint Lucia Turf Club to purchase racehorses on sale and participate in the planned events.
If you are a cautious person, then you probably think twice before making a comment, or taking action. Not much fun if you are a figure prone to ridicule, a bumbling person, or even someone renowned for being serious or responsible. Recall Alan Greenspan’s famous words “…you think you understand what you thought I meant,” which were not interpreted quite the way he intended, causing him to warn that what was heard was not what he meant!
When planning changes, especially large scale system changes that may substantially alter the face of existing processes, prudent project management involves the careful appraisal of available options, including the option of not proceeding; the so called ‘do nothing’ option, to provide at least some justification for moving forward with the intended actions.
If you are surrounded by those who dismiss every opportunity to justify why the change is needed, and ride roughshod over opposing viewpoints, then an opportunity is missed to win over some of these opposing voices. For example, if computerising a system that is heavily based on paper to achieve a paper-free environment, one must consider power failures, cybersecurity issues, staff training, and a host of other supporting requirements. Even before reviewing new ways of achieving the same transaction, but with the help of computers. Sometimes, the do nothing option is a powerful one, either to ignore, or to accept.
It may be uncomfortable to admit, especially as an agent of change, that detractors, non-conformists, and the plain unwilling are sometimes right, even needed in planning for the future. Remember that even stopped clocks are correct on two occasions every day!
Editor’s note: Dr Lyndell Phillip St Ville is an ICT Consultant with a background in environmental science. His expertise includes systems analysis, planning, and capacity building. To share your views on this article, contact the author at: www.datashore.net or via The VOICE.