Operations just turned out proposal for a new customer environment down. The customer wanted, among other things, six self-managed servers to be part of the overall environment. Proprietary OS – and by that I mean customer-coded – and proprietary – also customer-coded – application, so no way we could manage that for the customer. We included Colocation in the offer for those six servers. I’m involved because nobody else wanted to take care of it – the customer is upset with us anyway and

“You can’t run Colocation behind a firewall that we manage,” Dave told me. The networking team leader, standing next to him, nodded in agreement.

So we went back to the drawing board. One of the guys had a brilliant idea. We can also offer managed hardware – that is, we only take care of the hardware – Plug in spare drives, push reset buttons, whatever.

“Rejected. This is HP hardware. We only manage Dell servers. Sell the customer a colo rack.”

Okay… “Up Yours” would have been the correct reply at this point, but we persevered. We changed the offer back to Colocation, write an angry email, and escalate another two levels up. By this point, this whole thing has taken us a week and the customer was quite angry. Final approval takes another two working days and the customer was now fuming. At least he knew who is not to blame.

“Thanks for the very late proposal,” he said. “We’ve really no choice, so we will do it at this price and in your data center. But I have one condition.”

“Sure,” the account manager replied.

“When you set this up, you will let Secretgeek handle it. I don’t want anything else to go wrong.”

The account manager confirmed that I will get to handle the setup. I just wished someone would tell my boss that I am trustworthy.

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