Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men

Two things happened this month that remind me of Robert Burns quote that the "best laid plans of mice and men often go astray". First of all, we have been planning to revamp our Online Registration Settings setup for a long time now. So this month we decided to split that plan into two phases. The first phase was to take out the awful little text boxes that you had to put a bunch of commas, equal signs, brackets etc to construct your dropdowns, menu items etc. The idea was to create a structured document that would allow you to see the entire registration specifications in a single view inside a text editor. Lots of improvements there, not the least of which was the ability for us to publish sample online registration setups as "quick starts". Phase two was to be a Graphical User interface which would build this structured document for you in an automated way.

So Phase One was completed in a single week of programming. We decided to go ahead and release it and made a big deal in promoting this "new" feature. We just knew that the folks who had had to struggle through the weird and convoluted way we had before would be thrilled. Au contraire, it was not received too well. Basically, I think we suffered from the "Who moved my cheese" phenomenon. We had to re-learn the lesson: "change is resisted until change becomes irresistable." So, while we thought that Phase two of this project would come after a month or so, it came in just 24 hours after Phase One was released. I went on a programming marathon for a couple of days and got the new Graphical User Interface programmed for the Online Registration Settings. We managed to make the change irresistable and now we all sorts of churches who have never done online registrations before, are ready to get started!

The second thing that happened this month was the plan to move to rackspace.com. It’s funny how one moment you can be thinking, all is well and I don’t have to worry about that one until the end of the year perhaps. Then all of a sudden when a disaster strikes, it becomes top priority. Bottom line, we got the move done in five hours, all 55 churches. Of course, we have already told that story that one ended well too.

Thank you Lord, work is hard and can be frustrating but it can be satisfying too.

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