In the discussion of multi-tasking, there was a natural discussion of resources: Time being a very important resource; People being another.
However, someone made some potent observations, essentially saying that there is no such thing as ‘multi-tasking,’ being that people are at best capable of “serial fast-switching.” I like that.
But that makes humans seem like a machine, in that person’s mind, and the thought was that we must stop equating humans to machines; we even have to stop treating people as “resources.” The stated reasons include:
- Resources are something we use.
- Resources can be interchangeable with like-resources.
- Resources are generally available on-demand.
- Resources are often consumed by the process.
The question was posed: “Are you a human resource?” My answer is, “Yes.”
- We use people. If you prefer, we utilize people and their associated knowledge, skills, and time (availability).
- We generally like people in IT to be, if not perfectly interchangeable, able to provide backup services if a primary person is unavailable. Coverage and continuity is everything in IT/business.
- People are certainly available on-demand; HelpDesk, anyone? How about a phone call from the boss: “Sally, can you come in here for a moment? Thanks…”. We’re polite and respectful for people’s prior obligations, and schedules, but we’re essentially available on-demand.
- People aren’t “consumed” literally (well…). But our time is consumed, and any person’s fulfillment as a resource is based on time/availability: That is a consumption.
So, people are a resource: People, and their associated knowledge, manpower (person-power?), and contributions, are most definitely a collective resource. After all, if you don’t have enough of them, in the right proportions, with the right skills and knowledge, you’re in for a hurtin’.
And, technically speaking, they make a pretty good appearance as a “machine” to the other parts of the overall IT/business machine.