Friday, August 26, 2011

"But" is an IT Cop-out

"I'd love IT to be a driver of corporate growth, but we don't have enough resources to even maintain what we have."

Have you ever heard something like this coming from your IT team? How about yourself? I'd bet most of us have.

I bring this up because I said this very thing this past week during 2012 budget planning. I'm pretty annoyed with myself, because I know better. At the same time, I am a recovering "but"-er, and I'm getting better all the time. It's become an inside joke between my wife and I. "But". One of us will use the word, and then catch ourselves. It seems harmless enough. "I'd love to , but I ".

How different are these two statements?

"I'd love to play catch with you Billy, but I'm exhausted from a long day at work"

"I wish you could use that iPad here, but we can't support them"

They may seem completely different, but the reality is that they mean the same thing to the listener: the second thing is more important or more true than the first. And they are both embarrassing cop-outs.