(of my professional life)

Team spirit and common sin


Enjoy the life and try to do the best of your days.

I was thinking longer time about writing this kind of document. I was not sure if I shall post it on my page as it is not directly related to any IT application.

Any way some time ago I was browsing on internet and I have seen really interesting webpage. With plenty of interesting documents and I do remember that the most interesting thing on this webpage was document like this. I have seen that owner of this web page was thinking in same way as I do (and he was loving Open Source). After that I have seen his webpage I was thinking that it is great idea to post at this please as well something more as just technical information. According to this I have decided to write this document.

Maslow's hierarchy of needs

At beginning of my document I would like to say some words about peoples.

Most probably all at managers, human oriented sciences and economical universities are learning about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The reason is that it’s the simplest way how to describe how each person can be most productive or prevent some kinds of health issues.

It is divided in to 5 levels:
1.) Physiological needs – of breathing, food, water, sex, sleep, excretion, …
2.) Safety needs – of body, employment, resources, mortality, family, health, …
3.) Love and belonging – need of friendship, family, sexual intimacy, …
4.) Esteem – needs of self-esteem, confidence, respect by others, …
5.) Self-actualization – needs of morality, creativity, problem solving, …

It's possible to see that needs of each person have been ordered in simple way from the most critical physiological to the most abstract self-actualization needs.

According to the mentioned points it is clear that only person that has satisficed all his need is happy, healthy and able to bring added value in to his daily tasks in private as well in professional life.


IT is nice, can be simply but it is not any time too easy.

I’m working at IT since long time. I have started my own company at the time when I was at school and later I have started to work for the largest IT Outsourcing Company on the world (at that time). As well I have enjoinedthe possibility to working for smaller companies.

My main scope are IT infrastructure tools with main focus on IT Monitoring. At my web page I would like to document for me, as well for anyone who is interested, some Open source projects that can make the life of each IT person easier.

Open source

IT can be cheap and provide enterprise futures.

In general it is possible to say that IT do not need to be expensive. In the case that you are looking for application providing you this or that functionality you can check if it is possible to use Open Source.

Most of the Open Source projects are maintained at professional IT peoples that are spending they spare time at this projects, as it is possibility to be creative (do you remember it belong in to 5th level at list of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs) and create useful application.

Some peoples may argument against of using open source products with many arguments. In most cases the arguments are not really technical, as technical arguments is possible to verify.

CMDB and Processes

Keep clean your environment but excel documents on SharePoint are not the right way.

Most of the peoples like to keep they home and environment where they do leave clean with clear rules to enjoy the life (and to prevent health issues).

With IT it’s similar. It do not really meter if we do have smaller or larger IT infrastructure, we shall keep it clean and use rules. The simplest way how to achieve it, is to use CMDB (Configuration Management Data Base).

In the case that you are looking for a CMDB please think about this points:
- Is it possible to use this one CMDB to store information of all my devices and infrastructure?
- Is it possible to modify the structure and extend it?
- Is it possible to integrate it with another tools and what is the interface?
- Is it possible to store all relevant information and documents at this CMDB?
- Is it possible to create processes and assign it to objects?
- Is it possible to use it for multi-tenant environments?
- …

The choose of CMDB is most important decision at any IT company (even it do not look so). Please take time and think about the CMDB and test each CMDB until you will decide which one you will use for your infrastructure.

Operation and Projects tasks are not the same

If it is broken fix it, if it need to be deployed think about it.

It is important to know what tasks need to be handled as operation tasks and what are project tasks.

Operation tasks

In general it is possible to say that each task that is related to maintain of already installed environment and it is not changing the functionality of the already installed environment is an operation task.

For this kind of tasks it is required to have clear process describing how to handle this task.

In the case that same task is needed to be done more as once, the right question at this point would be: Is it possible to do it automatically?

To prevent reactive handling of issues it is any time better to periodically checking trends related to your infrastructure. In this way it is possible to take proactive (instead of reactive) steps to prevent issues.

Project task

In general it is possible to say that most tasks at IT that are not operation tasks are project tasks. In this case it is important to understand the IT environment to use already existing tools and resources.

According to this it is really important to take some time to think about the project in relation to already existing environment.
- What tools is possible to use for my project?
- What infrastructure will be used?
- How it is possible to do the integration with rest of the infrastructure?
- What will happen when it will be broken?
- Do we have failover?
- How to reduce operation tasks with better integration?
- What processes need to be setup?
- …

IT Delivery model

Focused on your scope and be the best one (but with critical thinking about yourself).

In the case that the organization is providing some kind of IT service it’s needed to divide the service based on the team scope.

Many companies are looking for one IT person with larger knowledge of tools, applications and technologies. Probably they can find someone with large list of skills but not with really deep knowledge.

According to this in the case that you are starting your IT business it would be great to start to thinking about the structure of the teams that you will have when you will be large IT company. In this way you can search for peoples with larger scope of skills and help then to become expert with really deep knowledge at same area as you'll need.

You can take this simple table as an example. Here are listed teams that you will probably have at large IT company. (In smaller company the same team can take role of several teams mentioned at this table):

Network Unix/Linux-OS Unix/Linux-Application Windows-OS Windows-Application
ED&N/Call Handling
Local DC support
1st Line
2nd Line
3th Line
Change management
Delivery Lead / Account Delivery lead

- ED&N/Call Handling – Contact for your customers, that will work as interface between your customer and your team
- Local DC support – In the case that you have several Data Centers (DC) it is enough to have only the peoples responsible for hardware located at the DC.
- 1st, 2nd, 3th Level – This are standard support teams with defined scope. This teams are responsible for Operation tasks like Service calls and Incidents.
- Implementation/Integration – This teams are responsible for Project tasks.
- Infrastructure – This teams are delivering the infrastructure and tools that are used at rest of the teams (like Monitoring, Reporting, Interconnection with Customer’s infrastructure, User Authentication, …)
- Delivery Lead / Account Delivery lead – At this level are peoples that are negotiating the service contract, enhancement requests, … with customer.


Stability is beneficial for each of us.

I have already mentioned at beginning of this document the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The stability for each of as is the most important point. It is related to first 3 levels and particular to level 4.

For most companies it is important to have productive peoples. Based on my experiences the most productive person is the one that do feel safe and comfortable at his life and work. This person is able to achieve the 5th level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

On another hand I have seen managers that do have personal need to provide to his team members the feeling that it depend only on his decision if the person need to come in to office as well at tomorrow. This kind of manager is not really beneficial for anyone as he is assailing the 2nd level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs at particular team member. This team member can never become higher level at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and provide his full potential that can be beneficial for the company.

Try to understand what you are doing

Only day when you didn’t learned something new, was a lost day,

Especially in IT it’s important to understand how thinks are working. Until someone will only use an application and not really understand what it is doing and how it is working we can call this person an user.

At the point when the user will start to ask how the application is working and what it’s doing we can start to call this person an IT engineer.

Another Ideas are beneficial

Be open for different ideas

One of my professor at school used to say “More heads together are providing more sauerkraut” (at us we use to say that cabbage has an head)

It’s important to listen to another ideas related to same topic as it is possible to learn from them. On another hand be ready to justify your statement. In this way it is possible to learn from another ideas and make sure that you are taking over all the best points in to your idea.

Document anything that can help someone

It’s important to know how the application is working, not to know all of the related commands and parameters from top of your head.

During writing of the documentation it is possible to make sure that you understand the topic. As well in most cases it is really pointless to remember all commands until you understand how the application is working and what and where to search for.

According to mentioned points it is really handy to start your teams' wiki web site where each of the team member will be able to search for solutions or post an new solution.


Keep it simple stupid and small.

When you are going in to the shop to bay a bread, you are not baying only small peas of each product that the shop is selling. Instead of this you are taking nice piece of bread.

It’s already years ago when I have seen this acronym. During the time when I was working as professional IT engineer I have realized that it is really the best description of most powerful tools.

Most of the enterprise applications/tools are providing large list of functionality. Based on my experiences in most cases you will use just several of them but you have too paly for all of them.

According to this please try to think about this points:
- What functionality I’m looking for
- What is the user interface
- What is the interface that I can use for integration with another applications
- How I can update or replace this or that part of the infrastructure with smallest impact on the service.
- How can I provide load balancing and failover of the particular application/tool
- ….

In the case that you are building some infrastructure it is better to think about the task and split it to smaller pieces until you’ll be able to implement your infrastructure only with the applications that you’ll really need. It is probably time consuming but on another hand it’s most effective way to plan your infrastructure.


Anything that can go wrong will go once wrong.

When you are planning your infrastructure please ask any time yourself: What will happen in the cause that the part of the infrastructure that you are implementing will be broken.

In most causes it is really required to provide service without any interruption. According to this please check any time if the infrastructure that you are building is providing failover.


In some cases it is enough to implement cluster solution running one more physical servers. In this way you can prevent that your service will be affected at HW related issues. On another hand at this setup you have still only one instance of the application. According to this in the case of failure of application your service will be affected.

State less Failover

In some cases it is enough to run multiple instances of the application with same configuration. In case of failure you will just switch over to the backup instance of the application.

State full Failover

The best failover implementation is on application level. This failover implementation require that the application is able to share the current status with all instances participating on failover. In this way it is possible to switch the service between the instances without service interruption.

Be Fair and Honest

This is most important point.

I can remember that once I was on interview I was asked: “What I do expect from my manager?”
My answer was: “That I expect that he will be a fair person”.
I have seen that the person from HR was not sure, as well he asked me back: “That is all?”
I have answered to him: “I personally think that is more as enough and not so easy.”
I need to say that my manager at this position was really an fair person and he has my personal respect, even the company was the wariest one where I have been ever working.

This point is more about personality of a person as about something that he can learn.
For me personally it mean:
- To be Distinguished.
- To be open for constructive criticism
- To treat anyone in the same way as I would like to be treated.
- To keep your mind, but to accept another way of thinking as you can learn from them.
- Up some point is more important professional and personal grow as higher salary. (I’m back at Maslow's hierarchy of needs)
- …

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