Sunday, October 16, 2005

What's a Good Company? (Part 2)

Felt like adding on to the previous post after reading some recent posts on a blog run by a bunch of ex-colleagues.

Somehow, in this place that I worked for five years, we all managed to develop genuine deep friendships that carried on even after we left. The first thing that I noticed is that everyone laments how they never find that kind of friendship in all the places that they've worked for (with the exception of one or two :) ).

The second thing I noticed was how most people said that their career actually went backwards after they left. This made me wonder - what happened to all the great IT companies in Malaysia? Aren't there any? I know writing software is a difficult and risky business, but surely someone somewhere would have made it, especially with Microsoft based development tools?

Ultimately, in this business, its the people that make up the place that really matters, and no company that I currently know of is savvy enough to realize that. They may SAY they do, but they probably don't MEAN it.

Back To UK Again

I was just informed by my boss that I'll heading back to the UK again for a few weeks from end of October onwards, so it looks like I'll miss out on the long Raya holidays.

Not really looking forward to the trip this time as the weather is colder and the sun sets earlier. This time around I try to be more prepared - bought sleeping pills, eye mask and head cushion so that I'll wake up refreshed when I get to London, and a warm jacket.

What's a Good Company?

Since I was made manager some years back, I try my best to make things better for my staff, encouraging them to grow, trying to give them constructive feedback and generally treating them the way I thought they would like to be treated. At times, what I do seem to contradict what the company and the HR department have on mind, and there's resentment from both myself and the staff.

In my new job, no one really reports to me, and the work is about 70% technical, so these issues sort of dropped out of my mind, until a recent article in BusinessWeek brought me to Mini Microsoft, a blog by an anonymous Microsoft employee who has become a celebrity of sorts for his rants about how things are being run at Microsoft. It is interesting that such a successful company as Microsoft also faces the issues that I used to agonize over in my previous job.

Spam, Spam Everywhere and Nowhere to Hide

Spam seems to be everywhere nowadays. I log into my office email, and there are viagra offers and stock tips. I check my Yahoo email, and another 3 dozen (mostly x-rated) offers awaits me. And when I check my blog, the comments from spammers crowd out my friends' messages.

During the day, various telemarketeers try to interest me in insurance schemes, personal loans, time share schemes and what not.

And when I get home, I find a bunch of flyers and junk mail in the mail box!

If half of all these efforts were put into charity, I'm sure Africa would be a rich nation by now...

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