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Monday, June 21, 2010

It depends on what the meaning of "deadline" is
Posted by Jill | 5:14 AM
One of the first things I have to do when I get a new project is to come up with a timeline. The timeline is built by going backwards from a pre-set "live" date decided by people way above my pay grade. We have to deliver by that date or else it comes out in OUR reviews the following year. Yes, there are many other people who have to provide information, feedback, and approvals, but people who do what I do are the ones who have to answer if a deadline is missed.

I deliver data entry screens for clinical trials data. The development process is more complicated than it sounds, and there's a lot of people involved. I take my deadlines seriously; that's one reason for the 80-hour weeks and such.

Rahm Emanuel doesn't think a deadline is a deadline, just a "guideline" for more talk when it comes to withdrawal from Afghanistan:
TAPPER: So what exactly does the July 2011 deadline mean? Is it going to be a whole lot of people moving out, definitely, as Vice President Biden says? Or could it be more nuanced, as General Petraeus says, maybe just a couple of people leaving one province?

EMANUEL: Well, no, everybody knows there's a firm date. And that firm date is a date -- deals with the troops that are part of the surge, the additional 30,000. What will be determined at that date or going into that date will be the scale and scope of that reduction.

But there will be no doubt that that's going to happen. And I know actually -- I look at both of those, and they're not inconsistent. But remember where we were on Afghanistan policy, that war had waxed and waned. And there really hadn't been a focus on how to bring that war to -- and the effort (INAUDIBLE), even with al Qaeda and Taliban, to a point given what was going on in Iraq.

The president raised the troop level and civilian participation to 30,000. This was creating a window of opportunity for Afghanistan. We are now at that point in Afghanistan, and in fact for the first time in eight years, nine years, they're actually meeting their police recruitment requirements as well as their army recruitment requirements. So they themselves can take more and more responsibility for the security of that country.

Second is we're also -- about a half of al Qaeda has been eliminated in this last 18 months. So we're taking the pressure to al Qaeda, taking the pressure to the Taliban. And we're making progress as it relates to, as you know, after the president's meeting with President Karzai, went back to Afghanistan, held a peace jurga.

There is also progress being made on that side. All of this has been predictable in the sense that we knew once we created this window of opportunity, we were going to focus on what are the resources that are necessary, where are we going to be making progress. But the July '11 date, as stated by the president, that's not moving. That's not changing. Everybody agreed on that date. General Petraeus did. Secretary Gates did. As also Admiral Mullen agreed.

And the goal is to take this opportunity, focus on what needs to get done, and then on July 2011, is to begin the reduction of...


TAPPER: But it could be any...

EMANUEL: ... troops.

TAPPER: But it could be any number of people.
EMANUEL: That's what you'll evaluate based on the conditions on the ground. That is -- but what had to happen prior to that was having a date that gave everybody, the NATO, international forces, as well as Afghanistan, that sense of urgency to move.

I wonder what would happen if next time I miss my deadline, I said to my boss that I don't regard deadlines as deadlines; just a "eense of urgency to move."

Perhaps this is why Rahmzilla is rumored to be leaving soon.

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Blogger PurpleGirl said...
I'd say that you would be hearing about their displeasure in a conference regarding your performance much earlier than your yearly evaluation.