Aug 22, 2006

It's a War... but the Generals Go Home Early

Today at work I was told that for the next four weeks my company (the company I work for -- I don't OWN it) will be going whole hog on a project for the next four weeks. The plan includes two weeks of 10 hour days and two weeks of 12 hours days. There's a weekend of work in there too.

Is this like my old place of employment all over again? No. It's not. This is one month with a launch date at the end -- a light at the end of the tunnel. Likewise, this will be the first weekend I'll have to work this year. A quick look at the scoreboard has one weekend so far in 2006 while I worked 35 weekends in 2005. And, in my position at my former employer, I was not 'entitled' to any kind of extra cash for that extra work. I didn't even get an extra vacation day for that.

Not only do we have a target launch date but the best part has to be that this will be a full office effort. This will be everyone pitching in. This won't be a scenario where management status precludes long hours. Everyone's pitching in.

There's really nothing quite so disheartening as your fearless leader cutting out as soon as the five o'clock whistle blows while you're just settling in to work into the wee hours. (And you KNOW that they're out for the night -- they're not going to be doing anything for the rest of the night except spend time with their family, mistress, or significant other). It's like, "Next time I see you, the work better be done! 'Night!" And, zoom, they're off...!

Yeah, I'm a bit unrealisitic. If management stuck around at my former company every time someone worked late... they'd just about never leave. Here's a quote for an email I got last week:

"[Blank] and I have both put in all-nighters over the past week [...] I have not been out of the office until after 9pm for the past 2 weeks." If only that were the exception. Alas, it's the rule. It's funny. I blanked out the names of the poor suffering employees. That's the only way to know who they are as their stories are so typical. They won't be recognized for going above and beyond. If anything, they'll be chastized for not giving their "all" on another project. You're only as good as your last promotion.


Mayhem said...

I have worked several late nights in the office at ePrize over the last few months, and I have to tell you, my director was there buying us dinner, asking what he could do to help, everytime.

I am not a cheerleader, like our friend Josh, and I feel there is plenty of room for improvement, but I also want you to know, things have changed since you "left" ePrize. Your angry rants are based on old information, and frankly I don't understand why you care so much, it's actually kind of creepy.

NoLimits said...

Creepy is my middle name. It's just tough to "get over" things when the knife wound in my back is still so fresh.

exPrizer said...

I knew and still know people who work late every single night. It is NOT normal to stay at work over 12 hours every day.

Of course all IT jobs will require some long nights, weekend work, etc., but that's normal. I'm talking about consistent late nights that are expected and even required. When you're scheduled up to your eyeballs there is no room for error, no time for any unexpected work, no breathing room.

What's outrageous is the fact that the "leaders" see this, smile and go home to their families. The hard workers (the #3's from my previous post) are expected to finish everything, regardless of any family or personal plans they might have had. Of course no compensation is ever offered. It used to be, but Rob blew a bunch of cash on hookers and Josh needed a new BMW.

What I'm saying is that long hours can be expected in this job field, but what ePrize is doing is nothing short of a sweatshop. 95% of the people I know work IT; important jobs, billion-dollar companies, definitely "careers". And you know what? They all get to go home on time.

yearofthechump said...

mayhem, I'm not even sure its at the director level that some people get annoyed. Look any further beyond their level and you might not find anyone. I don't consider that 'change' entirely. So also I'm curious, lets put some date's behind the change, lets say... what kind of stuff have you current eprize folk noticed thats different since the beginning of this year? I swear to god if one of you says we're hiring a bunch of people, well you'll look like an idiot to those of us who were there before.

ePrizer said...

"It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worthy course; who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly; so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat."

Teddy Roosevelt
(Paris Sorbonne, 1910)

dizgruntled said...

ePrizer - we may need to restrict how many times one person can use the same quote.

Just a thought IMHO.

NoLimits said...

I don't think that that TR quote would fit on a sign. Here's an appropriate one that basically says, "Get off your duff."

"A good solution applied with vigor now is better than a perfect solution applied ten minutes later." - George S. Patton

dizrespected said...

It's funny how eprizer sees fit to quote Teddy and me (both twice) but what has he said that has added value to the discussion?

eprizer, if you insist on posting comments - which you really don't have to feel obligated to - kindly add more substance than a few quotes from Bartlett's Familiar Quotations.

Take care and God's speed.

NotImportant said...

Let's say, hypothetically, that *some* of the people fired from Eprize may have raised questions about ethics one too many times? Those quotes, glibly pasted all over the walls, are simply insulting in that context. The cynicism displayed is a direct result of the hypocricy suffered.