Saturday, 29 October 2005

My wife - the project manager

Norma has appointed herself Project Manager for refurbishment of bathroom. Bath that had been resurfaced started to chip so search initiated for replacement of bath. Scheme One- remove bath altogether and have super-size walk about shower. Contractor initially selected turned out to be rip-off merchant.
Project shelved as too difficult.
Chips became larger.
Search for alternatives identified B & Q who have remodelling teams.
B & Q interested but only do total refits - i.e. everything including bath, loo and handbasin. Declined by Manager as outside scope.
Ch Exec Officer (guess who?) ruled that whole thing was better than chipped bath getting worse.
B & Q supplied brochures etc. Considerable confusion ensued at project site.
Consultant called to advise, reconcile and obtain order. Ordered but everything put on hold until fitter had visited.
Changes in design post-consultant but prior to fitter visit.
Fitter visits. Changes identified. Whole project re-costed - OK within budget. Fitter then advises that some of consultant's ideas were not possible. Further re-evaluation and changes.
B & Q Customer Satisfaction team introduce themselves. Want to deliver bath next day - 5 weeks ahead of start of site works commencing. Declined after much debate.
Satisfaction team announce delivery date - no time specified. Project Manager fairly relaxed.
Satisfaction team advise that delivery would be between 8 and 12 next day. Project Manager assumes 12 is time they will come.
8.10 this morning. Delivery. Project Manager in dressing gown, sans make up or brushed hair. Show delivery man where goods were to be stored in spare bedroom. Driver advises he does not deliver above first floor level. OMG. To be stacked in hallway.
Quite clear that B & Q are keen users of IT. Some items not delivered. Toilet pan that was delivered is cracked. Some wrong items included.
Consultation with Satisfaction team. Serious misnomer. Consultant might deliver/exchange items that were u/s. Might not. No one too sure. Team to initiate email to consultant and advise response. May have information ahead of fitting date.
Installation team due next Tuesday. Current state of play is that there is not enough of any one package for them to do anything other than rip-out what we have. Project Manager somewhat disconcerted. Our planning with crib board and matches surpasses entire efforts of B & Q so far.
This saga will continue.
We have not yet got to stage where fag-smoking, tea-drinking, loud radio-playing, arse-crack displaying workers appear. Lack of materials doubtless intentional to allow the fitters to move to another job and leave us loo-less, bath-less and handbasin-less.
Contingency plan to move with washing implements into B & Q warehouse/showrooms where we will avail ourselves of the display items.
Project manager was intending to move onto kitchen rejuvenation. I doubt that this will figure large in plans given this experience even so far.

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