Friday, July 25, 2008

Five People You Meet In IT

At first I thought I should write my own version of Five People You Meet in Heaven. But I am 99.95% certain that I am not going to heaven. Then I thought I should change it to Five People You Meet in Hell. But I don't want to meet any of my friends and family in Hell. And I most definitely do not want to meet certain other people down there (I am not saying that I don't want them to be in Hell. I just want them to be in a separate section, far away from me). Plus why waste breath writing about people who bug you.So, I am writing about IT. Although the people I have met can be found in any other industry too.

The Whiner
Nothing is good enough for him. If he is in support project, then he wants to be in development. But if he is put into a development project, then he will crib about the long hours. Everyone is out to get him, his team-mates, his project leader, his manager. I agree that everyone cribs at some point or the other, but if someone has nothing else to do but crib, then there is something seriously wrong. One year in IT is enough to know that most of the times the work is menial. Copy-pasting code, preparing umpteen documents, sending status reports(this is somewhat tricky coz you need to find stuff to show for the time you were in the canteen or checking your stock's performance on sharekhan or moneycontrol) does not require a very high IQ.The project leader/manager is a b*****d (they have to, otherwise its hard to get things done from unmotivated, unhappy people).So, either you should quit IT or shut-up and adapt.

The Midnight-Oil Burner
These people take great pride in staying in office till the last cab is ready to go. And they make sure that they can let other people know about this at the slightest chance. Maybe you have heard this (If not you will have to imagine the tone: Long sigh + pride + condescension)
'Oh I missed dinner.'
'I was in office till 12.'
'It's been a long time since I have seen the sunset.'
'I can never leave at 6.'
'I was in office on the weekend'
Sadly, lots of people do get impressed by this. But what they do not understand, that only very few people have to stay back because of the work load. Free internet, photocopying, scanning, dinner in the canteen or just doing tp with friends in office may be some of the reasons for people to stay back. More often than not, it's because the person isn't strong technology wise, or his analytical skills aren't too good.

The WonderBoy/WonderGirl
Assign them a task and it's like they take put on their cape and underwear and transform into superheroes. And the reason that you don't see the cape or the underwear is becoz it's invisible. And it is visible only to others like them. Their superpowers? Excellent communication skills, sound technical skills, team player, proactive, strong domain knowledge, management skills etc etc (Just copied that from one superhero's last appraisal)

The Idiot In The Next Cubicle
This is the guy who is in IT by fluke. He didn't have any good job offers in college and accepted a job in IT as a stop-gap solution. He will probably goof around in office till he gets through CAT or GRE. Then there are others who belong to this breed ;whose ultimate aim is not MBA or MS; but who just don't believe in working. Ever had to stay back in office because someone else goofed up and didn't finish their task? That's the idiot I am talking about (Though probably everyone is an idiot at some point or the other).

The Boss From Hell
There is nothing worse than being stuck with a team-lead/project manager who doesn't appreciate you. Even worse is the boss who pretends to be listening to you and then retracts whatever he has promised you. This is the guy who keeps a tab on how long your coffee breaks are, catches you in the restroom/canteen and asks about the status of your pending tasks, nods disapprovingly when he sees you talking on the phone, whose face bobs up and down from his monitor every time you get up to take a leak.

I know it's quite wrong to categorize people like this. But there is no malice intended behind it. I have met some good people too. And I am sure that you have too. Remember the team-lead who faced the music when you screwed up the code in UAT/Production. The colleague who stayed back for moral support when you were rushing to meet the deadlines. The client/manager who sends in an appreciation mail once in a while to boost your morale (it's a different issue that you were expecting a promotion or onsite opportunity rather than just nice words).


ConfusedIAm said...

Awesome.. yaar. nice article..

So if you dont mind.. tell me which category I am in and also at least one of each category that I know..

Rambler said...

You should know better which category you fall in :-)..I think we go through each of the phases at least once..i don't want to get into trouble by naming people :-)

Anonymous said...

Your first para on Heaven and Hell was impressive. And good way to categorize the IT folks. There is also one category that talks too much and does less work.

Iyer Education said...

nice post... good read after a very long time... also very precise set of grouping i say :)

Innocent Warrior said...

He he :) I am just found most of the characters in my company.

Very nice post!!!

Rambler said...

"talks too much and does less work", hmm, you must be talking about managers :-).Ya, I know I have left out few other people. But then the count would not have matched my title :-)

@Iyer Education

@Innocent Warrior
Are you sure you are not working in the same IT company as mine? :-)

Jeeves said...

where do the following fit in!?

(a) the perennial module leader who joined the company donkey's years ago and is only there because of the number of stocks he has.

(b) the accent putting dude who is just waiting for his visa and a reason to hop onto the next flight abroad

(c) the management who ... {fill up with your own imagination}

Innocent Warrior said...

You never know :)

Rambler said...

Am not sure about (a).But (b) can be put in The Idiot In The Next Cubicle. And (c) as The Boss From Hell.The list is certainly not absolute, there are so many people out there who can be put in different categories!!

@Innocent Warrior

Rukmani Ram said...

Grouping was excellent!

Thank god I did not end up in IT.. I'd have been the "idiot in the next cubicle"!

Rambler said...

@Rukmani Ram
Lots of people out there must be thanking God that they are not in IT. Idiots are not exclusive to IT. You can find them in any industry :-)

maverick said...

well this is really funny ,i guess i m very much in group (a),honestly i tried to quit by applying to ftii,srftii but both times they werent convinced that a 2-3 yrs software guy can fit into film world,
also,i am yet to c a "realistic" movie depicting india's IT sector ,hopefully i ll make that movie soon and use ur defintions in my script too ,hope u wont mind :)

Rambler said...

Thanks..So you are a type A. Then quit as soon as possible!!!Sure I don't mind if you use my post in your long as you don't mind paying me royalties :-)

Pushpinder Singh Bagga said...

good article


mAnIaC! said...

Startd with 2... moved to 1... then to 4... and now to 3...

Final destination: No. 5

"Boss from hell" got me here to your blog!

The best book I read (of which you will not get a free e-book) - "THE DILBERT PRINCIPLE", and you'll meet a new breed - WALLY! Currently, that's me!

Rambler said...

@Pushpinder Singh Bagga

What you have mentioned is the natural progression for most. Oh, so you have a Boss from hell, gud na. Observe the way he works, all of us in IT are going to have to end up that way :-)

rajnish said...

Enjoyed it thoroughly.It was the first time that the reality did not bite but brought a smile on.

Prabodh said...

That was funny...but true i guess ...good post

Rambler said...

Thanks :-)

mAnIaC! said...

Was just revisiting your old posts... The categories of ITians are strikingly similar, to ones mentioned in the book "THE DILBERT PRINCIPLE"!!!

Another book, that you should give a try! I read it every December (before my evaluation) :P

Rambler said...

Hmm, dilbert principle..haven't read it, but have heard abt it.. This post was inspired by the people that I have met so far in office, seems like IT guys are the same everywhere :-)

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