Are you a dumb pipe?

Have you read any articles, or heard a conference speaker admonish #network #operators to avoid being dumb pipes?

This is a pretty common warning. But give a thought about what a dumb pipe actually is.

Here are some characteristics of a dumb pipe, and the related Telecoms qualities.

📲Delivers its content from point A to point B. Service Quality
📲Content delivered is the same as the content provided. Robustness
📲Delivery happens quickly. Low latency
📲Delivery occurs every time without intervention. Reliability

Clearly, not everything about a dumb pipe is bad.

Often these same articles or speakers will advocate offering higher value-adding services. “Moving up the value chain” or similar.

But any value-added will be on top of an existing dumb pipe.

The dumb pipe has to come first.

Keep that in mind when you’re warned to avoid Dumb Pipe Syndrome™

Comment with any experience you’ve had being called a Dumb Pipe.

👉 #TelecomTribe: Follow me on LinkedIn, Russell Lundberg, for more updates, insights, tips, tricks, and tactics to love a career in Telecoms.

Was the Project Manager you hired successful?

If you’ve been the de facto Project Manager (PM), and then hired a new PM, it’s you who must change to enable the new PM.

The reason is human nature. Your team already has the habit of discussing the project with you. They give you status; deliver updates; discuss interesting aspects.

That’s their habit. It’s yours, too. They won’t change if you don’t.

Assuming part of the PM’s role was to offload you, what did you do to follow through?

✅Did you introduce the new PM?
✅Did you renounce all your previous PM duties?
✅Did you tell people to work with the new PM and ignore you?
❌Here’s the hard one: when someone tried to give you project info, did you stop them and tell them to talk to the PM?

That’s where many projects fail. The PM is often blamed. But it’s the PM’s manager who failed. It’s your fault.

Hiring the PM is easy. The really hard part is to fight your own urge to know. You must stop people discussing the project with you. Redirect them to the PM.

You must do this to give the PM any chance of succeeding.
If they won’t talk to the PM, he’s finished!

You must change your behavior for others to change theirs.

So, how successful was the Project Manager you hired?

👉 #TelecomTribe: Follow me on LinkedIn, Russell Lundberg, for more updates, insights, tips, tricks, and tactics to love a career in Telecoms.

Here’s a problem 5G won’t solve

These are exciting times in Telecoms. Every day brings more information about new 5G technologies such as MIMO, mmWave, Network Slicing, and URLLC. Exciting use cases are described, such as private networks, Autonomous Cars, Neutral Host Networks, and EdgeComputing.

Although these are the things we read about, what exciting things have you worked on this week?

I didn’t think so.

It’s quite a paradox. The press is filled with the dazzling future just around the next corner, while our workdays are filled with routine maintenance, customer complaints, troubleshooting, budgets, and on and on it goes. Nothing very exciting.

But all necessary.

As Telecoms Engineers, we love to read about and talk about the new. Yet we should focus on things which improve service quality and lower costs. Things which develop our skills.

I like helping my team develop their skills. That’s more valuable to me and to them. I teach a lot about Excel because it can help with so many aspects of building and maintaining the network.

What do you do to develop your Telecoms skills? Leave me a comment with your best suggestions for Telecom Engineers skill development.

👉 If you like this, follow me on LinkedIn, Russell Lundberg, for more updates, insights, tips, tricks, and tactics to love a career in Telecoms.

Many Decry the Demise of Telecoms Network Operators

Many are decrying the demise of the #Telecoms #Network #Operator for failing to innovate or to succumb to Dumb Pipe Syndrome™. The asteroid ending the long reign of network operators has already impacted, apparently.

I don’t think the network operator business model has changed that fundamentally for a long time.

“Heretic” you cry. “Has Russell been smoking something recently decriminalized by California?” you snicker. “Has he not heard of 5G?”

Calm yourself. The sky falls not.

The Telecoms network operator business model has always been about balancing capital and operating expenses with the recurring subscriber revenue of those who use it.

Innovation is mostly lowering the cost structure or temporary first-mover advantages.

Do you see any fundamental change coming?

I’m carefully watching the open standards movement. Opening up interfaces might loosen the grip of vendors and allow smaller, more innovative players into the network.

It could help separate hardware from software, and potentially end the decennial forklift replacement of the network.

👉 If you like this, follow me on LinkedIn, Russell Lundberg, for more updates, insights, tips, tricks, and tactics to love a career in Telecoms.

SpaceX Marketing Soars on Falcon Heavy

I cried this morning when I watched the live video stream of the launch of Falcon Heavy. As an Engineer, I was overwhelmed by the magnitude of all the work and planning and preparation and testing and science and engineering and everything that went into that entire project to make that launch a success.

Love a Career in Telecoms

Beyond the success of the launch itself, the proper separation of the two Falcon 9 side boosters, continued operation of the Main booster, the placement of the capsule into proper orbit, everything just worked so well. When the two side boosters returned and landed back at Cape Canaveral, within less than one second of each other, I just shook my head in amazement and bawled with more joy. Continue reading “SpaceX Marketing Soars on Falcon Heavy”