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Managers- is employees work part of their comp

Managers- is employees work part of their compensation

that is when trying to figure out who does what, do you take into account opportunities to learn, grow in certain areas or is it simply employee A is better at task A1 so he gets to do it?

Do you consider it part of the bargain when an employee agrees to join your company, and you tell him he will be doing certain things i.e. sure youre taking a 150% pay cut but you will be doing so much with oracle that in 2 years you can triple your salary...

Also, who would you prefer to hire: eager beaver ("wow I get to work with SQL server and get paid") or jaded professional ("I've seen it all just let me at the code/design")

Daniel Shchyokin
Monday, April 28, 2003

My only experience was as a team lead once.  My first concern was delivering product and pleasing my bosses and end users.  This involved assigning work in the most efficient manner possible.  Second was giving people the plummer assignments.  Sometimes giving somebody a plum assignment assured my first goal was met more easily.

amp
Monday, April 28, 2003

"150% pay cut"  perhaps first, I would consider their ability to do math... but seriously, yes it is part of their compensation.  However, I do not think of it they way you appear to describe.

I will give above average performers greater opportunity for training, as well as better projects.  Is it part of their compensation, probably not as you mean it here.  It is not, I sent you to training in lieu of a $6000 bonus.  I am aware of some companies that do this and to an extreme. 

I will also provide more training, or equipment assistance to people learning on their own.  I like that it shows initiative. 

As for "eager beaver" versus "jaded professional"?  The question is loaded.  Here is how I rank the generalizations:
  - Experienced professional with desired experience
  - Experienced professional with similar experience
  - Eager beaver [My desire being they become one of the above]
  - Jaded professional with desired experience.

I put jaded at the bottom because the market for them is limited.  They do not build the business they generate revenue. 

Mike Gamerland
Monday, April 28, 2003

Mike:

>>  - Jaded professional with desired experience.
>> I put jaded at the bottom because the market for them is limited.  They do not build the business they generate revenue.

Please explain this statement.  The sense I get is that you consider 'jaded' people to be like disposable appliances and not assets.

For what it's worth, this industry exploits employees a lot more than it exchanges equal value with employees. A few iterations of this, and anyone will become "jaded." And by 'exploit' I mean poor and/or deceitful management that runs people into the ground with pipe dreams and then goes to "what did you do for us last week" mode once the rush is over.

It really sounds like what you're saying is that you look down on highly experienced professionals because they don't have the doe eyed naivete' to jump up and down in orgiastic joy over every minor variation in technology. I could also read implicit age discrimination into this, too.

Your turn.

Bored Bystander
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

To the original poster:

>>  Do you consider it part of the bargain when an employee agrees to join your company, and you tell him he will be doing certain things i.e. sure youre taking a 150% pay cut but you will be doing so much with oracle that in 2 years you can triple your salary...

I think there is always the management tendency to keep down salaries by rationalizing a less than average salary by claiming the beachhead that it will give the employee in some technology.

In other words, the "real" benefit of the experience in terms of bargaining position means much less than what the employee will settle for. So, if you act like you're drooling to "put" XYZ on your resume, the employer may be delighted to take down the salary offer a notch in order to "take advantage" of your desire to learn XYZ.

More experienced people ("the jaded") will see through this in the same way that auto dealers add $300 to a new car sticker to cover "rustproofing" that is actually about $20 worth of spray cans of black stuff.

It's a game.

Bored Bystander
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

These things are self-perpetuating - it's easy to be enthusiastic when you have interesting work, and hard when you have been assigned sh*t.

And if anyone with over 10 years experience isn't jaded, then I want some of whatever they're smoking :)

punter
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Daniel, everyone's future prospects are part of the value they see in a job, and this is naturally one of the factors that affects the market rate for salaries. I might add that this applies to managers themselves.

What you are really talking about is whether any employers use manipulative sales techniques to try to have candidates accept lower salaries. The answer is that most professional people can detect that sort of practice and would steer away from such a place.

.
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Actually .

The reason I ask is that this stuff used to hold a lot of excitement for me, ooh ooh java  or ooh SQL Server, but now I just can't bring myself to care what technology I work with as long as it gets the job done, all 4 gls look the same (.NET even goes so far as to ape a lot of Java's APIs), all flavors of SQL can be solved with a glance through the manual. Linux and Unix are the same thing from at least a users standpoint etc...

If asked which is better for a given task, I simply state my opinion, and go along with the decision. I keep up with the major stuff (I've read some stuff about .NET) but would not take a contract just to work with it.

I am just wondering if this is the onset of professionalism (the ability to ignore hype) or apathy, and how it looks to the kind of people who may eventaully have to judge my worth

Daniel Shchyokin
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Daniel,

You have attained Zen:-)

Prakash S
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Daniel,

I hope you don't think you will get a balanced response by posting this type of question to only one online forum.

JOS seems to be a primary hangout for software developers. If you really want nothing but responses from project managers then I suggest you post this question to forums where PMs hangout.

"...that is when trying to figure out who does what, do you take into account opportunities to learn, grow in certain areas or is it simply employee A is better at task A1 so he gets to do it?"

Managers tend to give task assignments based on things like prior work experience and reputation. Many managers won't assign a critical application (or a smaller piece of work) to a newbie unless the project is considered to be low priority or they feel the person is up to challenge. Now having said this, I have worked on plenty of small software projects where the project manager is nowhere to be found. That is, the PM is preoccupied with other matters and leaves all the day-to-day work responsibilities up to the developer(s) to figure out on their own.

"Do you consider it part of the bargain when an employee agrees to join your company, and you tell him he will be doing certain things i.e. sure youre taking a 150% pay cut but you will be doing so much with oracle that in 2 years you can triple your salary..."

I have heard this type of sales pitch several times before. If someone is trying to sell you (the job candidate) on joining their company based on the software products and technologies you will be using once you have accepted a job offer from them -- then my suggestion is that you get this person to put their promises in writing. 

"Also, who would you prefer to hire: eager beaver ("wow I get to work with SQL server and get paid") or jaded professional ("I've seen it all just let me at the code/design")"

Many non IT companies (insurance, retail, manufacturing, finance, etc.) seem to take the "eager beaver" factor into account during the hiring process. Then again, many of these type of employers have a reputation for NOT hiring the most talented programmer available.

One Programmers Opinion
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Daniel, it sounds like you've become an Experienced Developer.

.
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Board Bystander ---

My comment was based on the original poster's definition of a jaded professional -- "I've seen it all just let me at the code/design" and that I run a consulting company (not a contracting company).

Any individual who comes in with the attitude that "I am experienced but just looking to design/code" is of limited value(to my business).  They may not like it, but what value other than "X" lines of code per hour are they bringing?  I want someone who has ideas, who can recognize a good idea from a bad,  can recover from bad ones and is capable of articulating all to the understanding of the target audience. 

Contrary to the age discrimination comment, the people I tend to hire are experienced professionals.  The ones who are not jaded.  They tend to be older (35+), more experienced (10+ years, multiple operating systems and multiple languages) and have shown an ability to do the job without oversight.  They are not "jaded" because it impacts their bottom line and they know it.

If this, or any business makes someone jaded, get out or change the rules.  Why spend the rest of  life doing something that, according to the definition provided, makes them unhappy?  If people do not believe there are great companies and organizations to work for, they are mistaken.  Getting to them involves risk,  discomfort, and the desire to prove themselves, yet again.  Why should they have to?  Because THEY want something better.  That they choose not to undertake the journey is not their employer making them jaded, but them choosing to be.

In the end, even if they stay with their current employer, they need to get over being jaded.  They need to set the parameters by which they will live their lives.  It is when we put that responsibility in the hands of others that we can be exploited.

-Cheers.

Mike Gamerland
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

I have a feeling "Jaded" really means "I understand business and the profit value of the service I provide, therefore you will not be able to f*** me over".

Unfortunately, there are too many "eager beavers", which is a code word for "I spend all my free time debating templates in comp.lang.c++... I don't know how to read a financial statement, and I don't understand my position in the business context, so there's no way I can justify a higher salary or more authority."

big bob
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Mike,

Thanks for the clarification. I wasn't seeking to evangelize but you did provide clarification of what was an initially ambiguous answer.

Actually, I agree with every single point you make.  I think you and I had differing views of the definition of "jaded". I would term your view of "jaded" as actually "burnt out" and I would urge you to adopt that term instead for the sort of one dimensionality you describe. Burnt out is what "jaded" becomes when the person has failed or been sidetracked too many times but stays in the industry anyway.

My view of "jaded" is more along the lines of "big bob's" response, that the "jaded" are qualified by a deep understanding that IT work is subject to market factors and is not just a big career sandbox to play in.

Bored Bystander
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

In the long term, the resume enhancement benefit can be more valuable than the cash flow benefit.

doobius
Tuesday, April 29, 2003

Heh.  You want jaded professional?  I'll give you jaded professional:

http://discuss.fogcreek.com/joelonsoftware/default.asp?cmd=show&ixPost=3790&ixReplies=41

;)

Norrick
Wednesday, April 30, 2003

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