An interesting experience during my initial ITIL V3 trainings – which I missed to write about:

As a trainer, there are many situations where we have to stand-up and justify ITIL definitions and interpretations – all the more while justifying the correct answer of some of the tricky questions. This one was related to one of those situations.

There used to be (not sure if it is still there) a question in the sample question papers in the lines of (dont remember the exact question): “Which of the following most closely defines a good practice?”

One of the options said some thing like : “Some thing that help in driving organization forward“, while the correct answer was the option: “An industry-wide practice“. Many students used to select the earlier option as the correct one and I had to do a lot of justification and point to the courseware to say the correct answer was : “”An industry-wide practice

Now, in that particular batch there were a couple of richly experienced senior managers, who went on unconvinced, whatever justifications I gave. Finally one of them gave me a statement, which almost threw me out of balance (almost literally :-)).

He said:

“In some countries (he in fact took the name of a particular country – but not quoting it here, since it is not important), all the factories are dumping their waste into nearby rivers. It is an ‘industry-wide practice’. But I won’t agree that it is a good practice!”

I somehow managed the situation – but am quite sure that the embarrassment was not  very easy to hide!

ITIL documentation does not seem to say that as the definition of good practice. There is only (quite fair) usages like ‘using good practices in wide industry use’. Probably while preparing the question, the incorrect interpretation happened!

As i mentioned, not sure if the question is still continuing in the database of APMG.

  • If it is not, good – probably some feedback has helped in taking corrective actions.
  • If is still there, probably it will be a good idea for the APMG team to re-look into that.