The Art of Monthly Reporting

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A tutorial on the interesting and twisted art of compiling monthly reports for management consumption

 “Kid”, he said, “I just reviewed your monthly report,

I was looking for sizzle but it came up well short,

Execs read these closely, yours is dark and stale,

But with some re-wording it tells a whole different tale,

Let me help you to get the hang of this thing,

You share the basics and I’ll make ‘em sing,”

But almost nothing has changed in the past 4 weeks,

“Well you can start with that, but it’ll need a few tweaks,

Tell me about your staff and your #1 goal”,

Ok, Diane said her job is crushing her soul,

She said the office makes for a ‘toxic surrounding’,

And the level of incompetence is astounding,

“Great!  So said differently, your plan is on track,

To boost team morale and build skill where you lack,

Keep going, this is good!  How’s the dev team doing?”

Behind and overworked, there’s a mutiny brewing,

They won’t hit their date, key requirements were missed,

We have a testy technology team in our midst,

“So ‘Exciting new features consume the dev plan,

It’s tight but the team is doing all that they can,

Meanwhile you review the backlog with a pruner,

The goal is to find ways to launch on time, or sooner’,

This is great!  Next the view of the sales projection?”

Like a hockey stick pointed in the wrong direction,

We’ve gone from flat to spiral, strong competition,

“Great!  Clarifying our strengths, our #1 mission,

See how it works?  Look, you are eager and smart,

But monthly reports need less fact and more art,

With these changes, I think your deck is in great shape,”

I left his office confused, my mouth was agape.

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