DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION… and The Parable of the Motor Mechanic!


and The Parable of the Motor Mechanic!

By : David Leyland, Guest Contributor

I have been a motorsport enthusiast pretty much all of my life.  My interest began as a small boy with Scalextric, moving through Motorcross, and at the very pinnacle of my “addiction” I was destroying a small country’s GDP worth in tyres when the rallying bug bit me!

It was around this time that I met a chap who became a long-term friend, and in turn, my Best Man.  As often in life, I currently don’t see as much of him as I would like, however, a few weekends ago I went to visit him at his workshop, and what I saw left a lasting memory.

So first a small confession: at the start of my career I trained as a mechanical engineer with a fork truck company in my local town.  My first introduction to computers was this strange thing called a PDP 11, which was used to control “wire-guided” vehicles (driverless forklift trucks).  Whilst it seems almost impossible now, at the time I was the “Nipper”, or youngest person in the group.

When I met my friend that morning, he had a racing car elevated on a ramp and he was working underneath the car, changing the clutch, with an apprentice that he was mentoring.  I was greeted with a “Hi Dave” as I walked in, and we started chatting without a break in his stride.  As we talked, the spanners spun, the components were elegantly removed and the apprentice intuitively brought different size tools.  As the nuts and bolts were gathered and inspected, special hydraulic devices were wheeled in and out in a silent, co-ordinated “ballet” of activity that can only take place with familiarity.  All the while, our talking continued: news on friends and family, the price of fuel, the weather.

When the gearbox had been removed, along with the old clutch, there was a momentary break for a cup of tea.  Then the process was reversed.  The new clutch and all its component parts came out of its packaging – right part first time, unsurprisingly – and in next to no time the whole car was returned to one piece.  With a “clunk” of the large red control button, the car returned to the ground, the engine started and the apprentice reversed the car off the ramp.  All in all, it was a mesmerising display of expertise based on experience.

Now, I could have done exactly the same job.  However, it would have involved ten times the number of visits for tools as I sought out the correct sizes, together with accompanying groans, bleeding knuckles and an inevitable pause in proceedings whilst I ordered replacement components, all this whilst turning the surrounding air “blue”!

So you may be asking, “What relevance does this story have to digital transformation?”  Well, it is this – in order to reduce time and therefore cost, and to reduce project risk, it may be wise to call upon some experienced folks who do transformation every working day; who are experts in their field, and have the right tools in AccSL® to hand.  If you feel you want to avoid bleeding knuckles and all that bad language, why not call upon Accordant Solutions.

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David Fardoe

Author David Fardoe

With over 30 years’ experience, both as a customer and supplier of IT services, Dave has a passionate belief in empowering the business through efficient and effective use of IT services, in the office, and on the move.

About Accordant Solutions

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