– Not bad for a small company that started in Cincinnati.

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My father, Milt Bryce, founded our company on April 1, 1971, in Cincinnati, Ohio, making today our 50th anniversary. He was always fond of saying that April 1st would be remembered as our joke on the computer industry. In reality, we had a great impact on the way people designed information systems and managed projects. Our main product was “PRIDE,” an acronym for “PRofitable Information by DEsign – through phased planning and control.” It was the first commercial methodology of its kind on the market, and helped foster a whole segment within the computer industry. Although it was a manual methodology at first, we added software which did some rather amazing things. By the way, in 1985 we moved the company to Tampa Bay, Florida.

Our first customer was the Marion Power Shovel Company in Marion, Ohio, closely followed by some rather large corporate accounts such as Tenneco, Babcock & Wilcox, and General Electric. From there, we spread oversees to places like Canada, Japan, Australia, Brazil, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, and throughout Europe. This afforded us the ability to travel and see quite a bit of the world. It has been quite a ride.

As for myself, I served the company in a variety of capacities, including marketing, customer service, product development, training, and consulting. This required considerable writing, including manuals, sales brochures, articles, technical papers, training scripts, and much more. From there I started to branch out to other subjects, such as politics, morality, and our changing world.

I learned several things about people through all of this; for example:

1. In the Information Technology (I.T.) world, the problems are all fundamentally the same regardless what country you visit. People still do not know how to define information requirements, design systems, or manage projects. Documentation is considered a waste of time, as they believe the real work resides in programming. Users are unhappy as they rightly believe nobody considers their point-of-view and developers claim the users don’t know what they want. The list can actually go on and on. Interestingly, everyone thinks their problems are unique. They aren’t.

2. People do not want to know the truth, and base their behavior on perceptions, not facts. I also found this to be so throughout the country when it comes to interpreting the news.

3. There is no sense of history in the I.T. industry, probably because schools teach nothing more than coding. Consequently, there is a tendency to reinvent the wheel year after year. This too, I see in other walks in life throughout the country, which explains why Americans do not understand our past. What a pitty.

4. Common sense is not common. People seem to prefer facade over substance. In the I.T. field, if you want to make money, just change the jargon and use cryptic concepts. People like to be mesmerized in this manner. I simply cannot believe the amount of snake oil sold in the I.T. industry, then again, this is probably true elsewhere.

5. People in I.T. are content doing small things, such as an “app.” The idea of designing and installing a massive system is beyond their comprehension, probably because they don’t know how to. This is why systems projects consistently come in late and over budget. As my father was fond of saying, “If we built bridges the same way we build systems in this country, this would be a nation run by ferryboats.”

6. Americans accept shoddy workmanship. I am always amazed when software companies ask their customers to “beta test” their products. To me, this is an admission they do not know how to test their products. Remarkably, people have been conned into believing this is an acceptable form of behavior and accept buggy programs.

7. In most I.T. departments I’ve been in, I have found either the management wants to do things right, and the troops rebel, or; the troops want to do things right, but management refuses to support them. I chuckle when I hear people say, “We do not have time to do things right.” Translation: “We have plenty of time to do things wrong.”

As I said, I have found these axioms to be universal.

Now, 50 years later, “PRIDE” is as relevant today as it was in 1971. Why? Three reasons:

1. We treated systems development as a science as opposed to an art form. We carefully defined our terminology, our concepts, and our techniques in plain English, without the usual gobbledygook of jargon.

2. It is derived from common-sense engineering/manufacturing concepts. It is based on the simple premise, “A system is a product that can be engineered and manufactured like any other product.” This is why we use such concepts as Blueprinting, Bill-of-Materials, Assembly Lines, Production Control, Inventory Control, and more.

3. It works! It has been used in just about every industry imaginable.

Fifty years is a long time, and I want to thank everyone who believed in us.

If you would like to know about the “PRIDE” Methodologies for Information Resource Management (IRM), you can find our book on Amazon (click HERE).

Or visit our web site at:

Happy golden anniversary everyone! Who-da-thunk-it!

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at [email protected]

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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