Craftmanship over heroics

I read a

good blog post the other day (http://softwarecraftsmanship.oreilly.com/news/2008/8/8/uncle-bob-on-craftsmanship-at-agile-2008)

It was a

comment on a statment by Uncle Bob: "Craftmanship over crap", but in

the above mentioned blog post Dave Hoover modified the statement to

"Craftmanship over heroics".

I have

really taken this statement in, since it speaks to me.

So let me

explain to you what it means to me:

Imagine

having a carpenter work on your roof, while he works for you, you think it

takes a lot of time. And furthermore repairing the roof is rather expensive.

So you talk

to the carpenter and tell him that its taking too much time and its too

expensive.

He says:

"OK, I'll help your out, I'll cut 2 days off and some materiel costs as well"

Great your

are satisfied, you have a good skilled carpenter (a craftman you think) who suggest he will get finished earlier and

at a lower price. He is a real hero in

your eyes!

So he

finishes, you pay and everyone is happy.

Now a few

years later there's a big storm and its raining.

Suddenly

water is dripping down in your livingroom and kitchen.

So you call

the carpenter and ask him what is wrong.

He

replies: "Oh!, don't you remember we cut off two days? Well I didn't put

on any
roofing underlay, since it would take me two

days, and the material costs as well, don't you remember we agreed on

that?".

Naturally at this

stage your are stunned, you thought you were working with a professional (A craftman), and then he chooses to do something

like that !(trying to be a hero, but now

he's not!)

Well this is a very

strong analogy to the business of IT, there are lots of things (actually most

of the things we do) that our customers don't understand, and hence they try to

push us and make us cut the price.

So the question is

are we going to not put in the roofing under lay, nobody will know - well at

least not right now.

But when you cut

corners here you are going to end up with being in big trouble.

So choose craftmanship over heroics.