Purchasing: Translating Salespeople's Promises
Do you find it hard to get to the truth behind the hype in the high-tech marketplace? Charles B. Wang, chairman and founder of $2.1-billion Computer Associates International, knows both business management and the computer industry. In his new book, Techno Vision: The Executive's Survival Guide to Understanding and Managing Information Technology (McGraw-Hill, 1994, $19.95), Wang provides the following lighthearted yet on-the-mark translation service, bridging the gap between what vendors promise and what they really mean.
When they say this: They really mean this:Completely open. There's a 50% chance that it will work with your existing systems.Installed at over 250 sites. Actively used by 25 sites, uninstalled at 25 sites, and 200 sites have filled out bingo card requesting information.Complete interoperability among standard computing platformsWe'll do Windows and UNIX first, and you can hold your breath waiting for the OS/2 and Macintosh versions.Twenty-four-hour hotline support. It'll take us at least 24 hours to get back to you.Announcing a completely new architecture customizable to your specific requirements.Architecture announcements we have out the wazoo; just don't pin us down on delivery. Our customers have the benefit of scalability.Watch as we try to sell you bigger and bigger machines. We deliver support for industry-standard application programming interfaces.We couldn't figure out any other way to make this product operate with any other vendor's product. We operate in a fully heterogeneous environment. If our product doesn't work, we can always blame the other vendors. From Techno Vision , by Charles B. Wang, chairman of Computer Associates International. Reproduced by permission of McGraw-Hill Inc., ©1994.