How's work been?

Stele wrote:
Stele wrote:

I reached out to an old coworker this week and his new job is going pretty well after 4 months. They have a listing for basically what I'm doing now for 25k more a year. So I think I'm going to try and follow him. Resume and application weekend ahoy.

Thought it wasn't happening after 2 weeks but maybe HR was having a summer holiday. Finally got email to set up a phone interview today. Now to get to the real interview.

So the phone interview went great almost 2 weeks ago. The lady I talked to said there were multiple positions and would get back to me in a few days for the in depth team interview.

The only minor concern was some meetings and talk about wanting everyone within 50 miles to come to the office 2 days a week. But I'm about 100 miles away so would still be remote. And the policy wasn't implemented yet. So maybe if I got hired soon...

Then Friday my friend let me know the had a rough all hands where they dropped a new hybrid work policy and pissed a bunch of people off. So looks like they went ahead and did it and after 2 weeks I'm probably not getting that next interview.

A shame. Good pay and seemed like a better company. Then again if they're that dumb about remote development work, I guess I'll find a better place. Absolutely 0 reason to do my job in an office except for a company that has sunk cost in an office space and wants it to be used. Very disappointing.

A bunch of our clients have the hilarious issue where they demanded all full-time employees have to work in the office going forward, so all the essential staff have been quitting only to be re-hired as remote consultants at a much higher cost.

Our company was saved from a strike, but our terminal in round one of restructure lost 71 people. I made the cut. Round two is apparently Friday, my seniority may not protect me from that one.

Plus lots of employees are blaming Joe Biden. I don't know why. Apparently my company has been trying to kills itself since the Mid 2000s. Even the Department of Defense said we shouldn't get government assistance due to some fishy accounting on my company's part that overcharged them for shipping.

They dissolved my position yesterday. I'd be more upset if I weren't so tickled at what they are going to do about the sixteen years of scope-creep I'd been responsible for. Especially with the dunces they kept. Also, the wave of "I'm sorry" and "What are we going to do without you? Seriously, what?!" messages from the actual people I worked with daily is nice. Guess this is a perfect time to start plying my Paralegal Certification.

Someone created a Jira issue and assigned it to me: "Why is X considered a significant event?"

My answer: I can tell you where this event is being generated, what data goes into it, what applications consume it. Code does not and cannot answer "Why".

That's a business question, isn't it?

Yup, definitely not a question for a code monkey like myself.

I’ve spent weeks preparing a presentation for the CVP of my department. My boss’s boss’s boss. It’s only a small slice of what I need to get done in my job so I’ve been working lots of extra work hours on it. It’s important for my projects and the careers of myself and all the people working on the projects with me that I present our work well at this level. Budgets and all that. I’m pretty good at presenting but only because I extensively prepare. I’m sure I could prepare in less time if I was less of a perfectionist but that’s not how my brain works. It’s time consuming and not enjoyable. It’s a lot of pressure. But my presentations usually go over well and pay off. My part of the presentation was the last of 4 total parts. In previous dry-runs together we always ran long on the total presentation because there was a lot of refinement and discussion mixed in and I had to keep refining my part down to less time. We knew all parts had to be tightened up to fit the time slot we get with the CVP and his leadership team and everyone else was working hard to refine their parts too. During the actual presentation yesterday the previous parts ran long. Last second it was decided to cut my part rather than do a bad job in less than half the time planned for. My section was already very cut down to fit the time slot. I have spent a ton of time and stress without any of the pay off or benefit to my project and team. That’s likely better for the overall message to the CVP than trying to badly rush my part. Knowing that doesn’t make me feel better about the time and stress I’ve already spent.

Problem #1: My employer’s database is getting less reliable and the vendor’s support is getting worse.
Problem #2: Somehow I’ve been assigned as liaison between the entire staff and the database vendor’s tech support.

The CFO’s solution: Sign up for more of their services.
My solution: Interviewing elsewhere.

Update: I gave notice this morning (Aug 15). And I’m going to take some time to recharge in between leaving this job and starting the new one.

My manager listened to a newer hire, who outranks me, who sold him a pipe dream of a modification in our Continuous Integration system which would destroy our workflow and get everyone mad. Both myself and another employee, who together CREATED this system, tried to warn them both repeatedly.

Instead, we got "stop resisting and get with the program - if you see flaws in the new system, be constructive and fix them instead".

The first serious run of the new system was apocalyptic, and the 1 person on our team assigned to be "on call" for that period, got elevated blood pressure.

On Thursday of that week, I devised a frankly, ingenious system, which is meant to rescue the Stupid New Vision and make it work, saving the next on-call person from a heart attack. Everyone on our team liked it except the "newer hire who created Stupid New Vision" and "manager he sold it to". I wrote a detailed proposal doc quickly, and started working on MVP.

By Friday my manager got hit by all the people who got mad after Stupid New Vision malfunctioned the whole week (the outcome against which I warned both of them). He ordered the newer hire to switch back to the Old System That Worked.

Meanwhile, I worked on my rescue project from Friday through Sunday, and by Monday a key part of it was functional.

On Monday, we had a talk, and manager asked why didn't I come to warn him about the upcoming disaster.

On Tuesday, during the stand-up, he ordered me to, by Friday, shut down my system which was made to RESCUE the Stupid New Vision.

TO SUM UP, I objected to the disaster, warned about the disaster, was told to Get With The Program, DID THAT, and then was told that I'm basically wasting resources with my new system which was meant to fix their malfunctioning one.

I've worked here for 5 years and the management is eating it from the inside. I know people who left because they weren't allowed to do their thing, which actually used to be part of our company values. They are getting restrained and micro-managed. New pointless upgrade projects are being spun up by Project Managers who need to justify their existence. Several high-profile figures are leaving the company now.

... and I just moved to be within 10 minute drive to work.

Welp. Yeah. Time to fire up the resume press.

I started a new job two months ago. The CEO was new and hired me to build the company's first-ever data and research analytics department. I have encountered a good bit of pushback from the uncomfortable-ness of organizational change, but I had the new CEO on my side.

Well, after 6 months on the job he resigned due to "family health concerns."

Am I SOL?

UpToIsomorphism wrote:

I started a new job two months ago. The CEO was new and hired me to build the company's first-ever data and research analytics department. I have encountered a good bit of pushback from the uncomfortable-ness of organizational change, but I had the new CEO on my side.

Well, after 6 months on the job he resigned due to "family health concerns."

Am I SOL?

TLDR: Reduce your risk exposure and look.

As someone who thrives with good air cover (and struggles when it doesn't exist), being the head change agent is already difficult enough and without a senior leader to back you up, the blame for change will inevitably shift to be pointed at you.

It's not a YOU problem, this is just how humans handle change.

I am speaking from direct, difficult, personal experience. Others may feel differently.

shihonage wrote:

Meanwhile, I worked on my rescue project from Friday through Sunday, and by Monday a key part of it was functional.

Sometimes (more than you will probably be comfortable with), you just need to let things fail. Otherwise you are just perpetuating the underlying problem.

Or try The subtle art of not giving a f*ck.

Top_Shelf is exactly right. Ensure someone else has your back and the sponsorship of the project, or prepare to head for the emergency ejection pod.

Nimcosi wrote:

Or try The subtle art of not giving a f*ck.

Added to reading list.

After my company folded, class action suits were brought because of the WARN laws and not being notified of the company closing 60 days before (I thought it was 30 days?) and the company sent termination letters saying WARN is not applicable. I was advised that it is definitely applicable by somebody involved in state labor laws. I'll have to wait for severance pay, 3 weeks of unused vacation and 6 days of sick/personal days, which considering the company's standing may take awhile, but at least it's something. Now to get one of these other trucking companies to bite.

Hope it goes well Max. Am sure you'll get picked up fast.

My firm did ~10% RIF today and several of my friends impacted. Reaching out to my network!

Tscott wrote:

Just clocked out of my job of 8 years for the last time.

We were bought out by another company at the start of the year. We did printing and publishing, the new company just mainly focuses on printing and ships the publishing side of things overseas because it's cheaper. We were strung along for a few months with promises of "we want to keep everyone" and "we're seeing how we can incorporate your workflow into our processes".. then we were told that our department was going to be shipped overseas after a transition period. But they still want to keep everyone they can so apply for any jobs they have open.

I applied for something in the company I thought was interesting and I was qualified for. Never heard a word from HR. I applied for something outside the company- I got a call for an interview, and was offered the job two days after meeting with them. It's a bump in pay, and seems like a great opportunity with room to grow and develop. I'm excited to start something new next week.

Update. The company that bought out my former employer and was shipping my job overseas but keeping the printing side of things just announced that they were closing my former workplace for good. All the printing jobs, etc. going away.

Very glad I didn't stick around and try to find something within. Of course in the article I read about it, the company was still advising all employees to keep trying to apply for other positions in their company. Of course, now that would mean relocating halfway across the country...

Basically they bought out their competition, kept everyone around while they transitioned all our clients into their workload and kicked everyone to the curb.

In other news, my new job is going well so far. So glad I found this new gig.

I love it when a bullet gets dodged.

Anybody travel a lot for work? If yes, what do you use for a backpack for flights these days?

I just used this back for traveling to a cruise in the Caribbean and it was f*cking amazing.

Tzowla Travel Laptop Backpack Water Resistant Anti-Theft Bag with USB Charging Port and Lock 15.6 Inch Computer Business Backpacks for Women Men Work College Gift,Casual Daypack https://a.co/d/9R5X8Wt

Back when I was flying a lot for work I just used my Osprey backpack and then had a messenger bag for my laptop. I can look up the specific model if you want but it is nice because it is shrinks down well or expands enough to pack for a week if needed. I still use it for family vacations and other trips.

I have a work trip later this month and plan on using my LTT backpack. I used it on a personal trip a few months ago and it worked great.

I have used my Reebow Gear Tactical Backpack since 2018 (available on Amazon). It's performed flawlessly. Double stitched, large enough for a decent work laptop and an iPad Pro, lots of other internal space and zip pockets. Comfy straps including a waist strap. Usefully water resistant, and has room for a hydration bladder if that's your use. MOLLE system compatible so you can all kinds of stuff to it. Only $40 and better than the fancier brands I've had. I used to pack for 2 and 3 day work trips with just that bag, carry it on, and it had room for everything I needed.

I started using Swiss Army (specifically the Wenger manufactured ones) laptop backpacks when I was in University decades ago and they are still great backpacks I use for work and other stuff today.

Over the years I've picked up different brand backpacks but I still prefer the Swiss Army ones. Mine are now kinda old but I like them so much I'd likely look for a newer Swiss Army one if I was looking today. For all I know they don't make them anymore or the new ones suck.

I can only find 3 of my backpacks now (not sure what I did with the others) and I still use all 3 of them for various things. One for work travel (with 1 or 2 laptops), one for personal travel (with a laptop and Steam Deck), and one for camping (no computers, just turns out the backpack is good for camping trips too).

For shorter trips where I just need a laptop and a couple small things my favorite bag is one I bought from Booq over a decade ago when I was doing more short work day trips. It's very functional but slim and light which makes it easy to travel with compared to a large backpack. Doesn't look like they offer the same model anymore. I think it was called a Power Sleeve 15 or something like that. It has a shoulder strap and handle and so on. It's not just a sleeve.

My second favorite pack was a Wenger Swiss Army. But the rectangular shape of the Reebow gives me more space than the curved top of the Wenger, and the overall build quality is at least as good.

Robear wrote:

I have used my Reebow Gear Tactical Backpack since 2018 (available on Amazon). It's performed flawlessly. Double stitched, large enough for a decent work laptop and an iPad Pro, lots of other internal space and zip pockets. Comfy straps including a waist strap. Usefully water resistant, and has room for a hydration bladder if that's your use. MOLLE system compatible so you can all kinds of stuff to it. Only $40 and better than the fancier brands I've had. I used to pack for 2 and 3 day work trips with just that bag, carry it on, and it had room for everything I needed.

Done.

Thanks all for the great suggestions. GWJ FTW!

Time to test out the Peter Principle once again. I’ve been promoted. Have I now risen to my level of incompetence?

When our little startup was acquired a couple years ago by one of the biggest tech corporations in the world the worry was the employees wouldn’t thrive but that’s proven false. I’m continually surprised at how good of a fit it is and how successful we’ve been after such a major change and multiple reorgs. Getting promoted tells me the big corp agrees. Many others who joined with me have been promoted into more significant roles as well.

I’m old enough that some would refer to me as “late in career” yet right now it feels like I’m just starting and learning the possibilities ahead of me.

Congrats!

Is your old job available?