Tag Archives: office culture

Tales From Inside the New Megacompany

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big-office-phisix-coAs we mentioned before, Phisix.co has been bought out by a major tech company. The purchase happened over a year ago now, but I’m still getting settled into the ‘working for a mega-tech company’ role I’m supposed to play. I thought I’d use my old website to do some venting. I think this will be helpful for all those aspiring entrepreneurs out there whose primary goal is to be bought out by a big company like Google or Apple. There are upsides, but there are also downsides to the whole process.

The money is, of course, spectacular. If the tech company expects you to come work at their headquarters and fill in an office. If you’ve never worked in an office environment before, this can be a challenge. How do you motivate your employees? What happens when there’s communication problems (99% of all office problems). These might be things you have to deal with down the line. I didn’t, and I took courses on office management in my spare time to get better at it. And I am better. I mean I’m not great, but I’m definitely better than I used to be.

Learn to Master Coffee.

It’s a staple of every office. After all, everyone is sitting down for 8 hours and need to be alert (ideally) the whole time. Keurig machines don’t cut it: the coffee is terrible and it’s not befitting of a tech company. We suggest getting some quality coffee beans and getting your own grinder. The smell of fresh coffee is sometimes enough to motivate a whole office. I suggest doing some research on coffee grinders that are quiet and not messy (resource: http://www.konacoffeebeans.org/best-coffee-grinders?).

Get a good coffee maker too. This is your lifeblood you’re brewing! Something like the Technivorm Moccamaster. Seriously, it’s a ‘I’m not messing around’ type of coffee maker that’ll make your office life much more palatable.

Learn to Master People.

This one I’m still working on. I have a few people working under me, and we have a vague description of what our mission within the company is. Really, we’re probably all working on a 20 minute presentation to the higher-ups that will end up being rejected and I’ll end up with a sweet payout. Kind of like Bighead on Silicon Valley (highly recommended).

But seriously, I have a tendency to offend them when I give them feedback. I’ve learned that I need to give harsh feedback, but I need to introduce it with a complement. Seriously, it changes the whole game. “You’ve really helped me appreciate the link between AI and driving, and I’ll always appreciate that. But this tech isn’t ready for the road because of various moral quandaries that AI can’t begin to solve.”

I just made that up. Please don’t think that’s a clue for where I work.

Appreciate your Parking Spot.

The parking spot was, for some reason, a big part of my negotiations. I am really grateful now, because it is a sweet spot. It makes all the difference in the world. But the spot next to me? It belonged to another guy like me: sold his company two years ago, got a spot, and it was recently ‘rescinded’ by the company. Now he parks with everyone else. I’m appreciating the sweet parking spot I have right now, because eventually the tech company that giveth will soon taketh away.

And, well, that’s it. I don’t have any big life-changing epiphanies to share with you. Other than life goes on after you successfully achieve all your dreams. You’re still breathing the same air, talking with the same voice, going to the bathroom…all that. So appreciate what you have now, because the big tech buyout won’t solve all of that for you.
Peace.