How Long Will It Take?

I was talking to the CEO one day about his tech environment.

I had recently stepped into a role of running an environment with 1,200 servers.

Things were a hot mess.

Downtime was at an all-time high.

Little to no documentation existed.

Things were pretty bad.

He asked me how long would it take to fix it.

I looked him square in the eye and said — 2 years.

He replied back — That’s not fast enough.

I replied — Unfortunately that’s how long it takes.

He wasn’t happy with the answer.


A little while later I put together a project plan that included all projects that needed to be done in order to bring the environment into alignment.

Based on the current workload and resources the estimated completion time came to about 3 years.

I went in and met with the CEO again to share the plan.

This time he asked a slightly different question.

What can you do to make it go faster?

I said we would need more people and more money.

I got lucky.

He agreed to fund it.


The funny thing is in the end it still took around two years to fix everything.

We had everything in order.

Things were running way better.

And we had the highest uptime record and the company‘s history.

Sometimes a tech environment can take a while to wrangle.

In this “I want it now” world that we live in, it’s hard for people to see something that’s a few years out.

Even when you share with them the journey and milestones along the way.

Not all environments are this complex.

In some cases the time required to fully understand manage monitor and maintain an environment can take way less.

I get that 2 years was a buzzkill.

Still, I don’t want to be that guy that tells you it’s going to get fixed tomorrow.

Because that would be a lie.

Getting your tech right takes a little time.

Sometimes it’ll take 2–3 years.

It takes your commitment as well as mine.

Together we can make a difference.

Are you ready to find out how long your journey will take?