The Deflector



  • Based upon my posts of the past few years, you may have noticed that I worked for BigWTF Inc. Due to short sighted corporate stupidity and greed, they went belly up, and got scavenged by the vultures at MuchBiggerWTF Inc. They kept almost all the folks from both our team and our counterpart team, including both managers, in one big team.

    Now our new (counterpart) boss is the kind of person who deflects blame. When we see a problem coming, instead of letting us fix it, he will call a meeting with the appropriate other teams to get someone to sign off on any changes we need to make. This way if something goes wrong, it's someone elses fault for letting us to do it. On numerous occasions, he has let our production systems come crashing down rather than take responsibility for letting us make the necessary changes. His mission seems to be to make sure that he never makes a decision, and someone else always takes full responsibility for any and everything that happens. He's very good at deflecting responsibility and blame.

    Ultimately, they realized that our product did more than our counterpart teams' product, so it was decided that our system would replace theirs. Naturally, this lead to lots of infighting as our counterparts and their boss wanted their own system. Then the layoffs started. Always from our side of the combined team. Every few weeks. Until about 50% of our side of the team was gone. Then our old boss got hit.

    But this left our new boss with a quandary: his system was being phased out and none of his people knew our system. That sort of made those of us who remained somewhat less dispensable. Until...

    The powers that be decided that in the new combined organization, it made no sense for our team or product to exist because it made more sense (money, manpower and time) to do the work in an upstream system (all true). To that end, our system was to be phased out. Uh oh. Our new boss has now lost his old system, and his only hope of survival is to depend upon our decimated team to integrate our system into the new infrastructure before the upstream team can do it; even though we should not be doing this. If we can pull this off, upper management might just leave the work in our teams' hands instead of phasing us out. But...

    Nobody has any incentive to do the work as we're all convinced that we'll all be history by the end of the year anyway, so why kill ourselves to help the guy that's shafting us? Since we are all frazzled from the set-your-clock-by-the-periodic-layoffs that only seem to hit our side of the team, we are all spending most of our time looking for other jobs. The boss suspects were looking. Does he try to talk to any of us? Maybe work something out to make staying and doing the work more palatable? No. He just lets us do our thing.

    I am the first to find something new and resign. The boss acts all surprised. But his team has no knowledge of our application or db. The permanent folks on our team have been mostly laid off. Most of the system knowledge is gone. His system is already dead. The one guy from his side of the team who is supposed to take over for me wants to wait until the afternoon on my last day to go over my stuff. Hmmm...

    This guy is going to abandon both teams, blame everything on everyone but himself, and get reassigned to another project.

    I am outta here!



  • @snoofle said:

    I am the first to find something new and resign.
    Congratulations.



  • I hope you understand that it is your duty to get another WTF job so that you can continue to entertain us for the rest of your life. <3



  • @lamoix said:

    I hope you understand that it is your duty to get another WTF job so that you can continue to entertain us for the rest of your life. <3

    Don't worry, here's what he didn't mention: His new job is at BiggestWTF Inc.



  • @random.next said:

    @lamoix said:

    I hope you understand that it is your duty to get another WTF job so that you can continue to entertain us for the rest of your life. <3

    Don't worry, here's what he didn't mention: His new job is at BiggestWTF Inc.
     

    He got a government job?



  • Not to worry - I took a very long term fully funded consulting gig to clean up and rewrite a major piece of financial software.

    While it's laudible that junior, mid and senior management want to clean stuff up and are willing to fund it, I'd bet my kids lives that I'll find plenty to entertain everyone once I get into it.



  • @snoofle said:

    so it was decided that our system would replace theirs... Then the layoffs started. Always from our side of the combined team. Every few weeks. Until about 50% of our side of the team was gone. Then our old boss got hit.
     

    This is common from companies which are not good at acquisitions.  Here's what they think:  They bought your company for the product, so of course they are going to use it.  However, their company is bigger, so the employees must be superior since they are the "winner."  They often fail to realize that the better product is probably caused by better programmers.



  • @snoofle said:

    Now our new (counterpart) boss is the kind of person who deflects blame.
     

     Wow, I didn't know that the project manager on MY project had another job!

    @snoofle said:

    I am the first to find something new and resign.

     Congrats, I did the same thing last year and it is a liberating experience.  Good luck in your new position.



  • As an add-on WTF, here's my parting shot from this place....

    I just found out from HR during my exit interview that after numerous acquisitions, senior management has decided to reduce the number of consulting companies they need to deal with down to a short list of a few approved vendors. As such, all of the existing consultants from companies not on the list will be let go and an equal number of consultants will be hired from the approved companies.

    Because replacing person A with person B automatically means person B has all the knowledge and experience of person A on a particular system.

    When senior management was informed of their misstep, they decided that they would hire the new consultants about 3 months before the old ones are let go in order to have overlap to transfer knowledge.

    Given that this place has several thousand consultants, are all the new  ones going to sit on the laps of the old ones for 3 months? What about fire occupancy codes? Lines for the coffee maker? The bathroom?



  • @snoofle said:

    Given that this place has several thousand consultants, are all the new  ones going to sit on the laps of the old ones for 3 months?
    Yes.  I hope you all have squishy legs.@snoofle said:
    What about fire occupancy codes?
    Who to the what now?@snoofle said:
    Lines for the coffee maker?
    As an aside, we can no longer afford to provide consultants with company coffee.  This will be strictly enforced by a new compliance officer placed in the break room.@snoofle said:
    The bathroom?
    Now that you're not drinking so much coffee, consultants won't need to use the bathroom as much, will they?



  • @snoofle said:

    The bathroom?
    @snoofle said:
    What about fire occupancy codes?

    Board Member: "Gentlemen, we've just killed two birds with one stone.  We deserve a raise.  All in favor?"

    Entire Board (in unison): "Aye."



  • @bstorer said:

    @snoofle said:

    The bathroom?
    @snoofle said:
    What about fire occupancy codes?

    Board Member: "Gentlemen, we've just killed two birds with one stone.  We deserve a raise.  All in favor?"

    Entire Board (in unison): "Aye."

    This is New York we're talking about, so I'm guessing your solution was to send the extra consultants out onto the sidewalk where they will be somebody else's fire hazard and their public urination will go unnoticed?



  • Got a similar one: BigCo bought our TinyCo to get IndustryLeadingApp. They kept our engineering team together, at least, but they replaced our QA with QA from a project that was similar only in that we were all working in the same industry.

    I used to have a tally on my whiteboard for the number of times one of the QA people asked me the *same damn question*. Seriously, how hard is it to grok that (simplifying immensely) if you diff a file that was rendered with aliasing against a file that was rendered without aliasing, there *will be diffs*? Lots of them! But all of them very very small! Which is what the report he was testing was designed to show: lots of tiny diffs == good, the occasional whopping huge diff == bad. Are there any whopping huge diffs? No? Then the *file is good*, the code is working, and here - for the Nth time - is why there are any diffs at all!

    Complaints went nowhere, because the management one level above our team came from the same project that the QA people did and was trying to protect what was left of "their people".


Log in to reply
 

Looks like your connection to What the Daily WTF? was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.