2 years of working in the IT industry has taught me a lot of things, besides writing really confusing emails, even more confusing self-appraisals (which I like to call self-aapu), where to keep my mouth shut (yes, I do that sometimes) and some stuff like that. But more than all these, I have learnt to observe people – you do not have much choice when you are on bench for almost a year before you get your first ever project. But hey, I am not complaining. I, in fact, liked the observing part so much so that I wish I was on bench and there was no recession ;-)
There are different types of people in the IT world. There are a few similarities – they all have the dog band (company ID card) around their necks, they all wear formal clothes (although a lot of them look funny in them), they all are good at staring at their computer screens (work or no work) and they all are in the process of losing their sense of humor (if you didn’t at least smile to yourself until this point of the post, I bet you are a part of the great Indian IT field).
And yet, there are so many different kinds of IT professionals.
The “Visionaries”: These are the ones that always think, feel and breathe their projects. You can usually find them sitting at their desk with their heads so close to the computer screen that you think he/she has a romantic affair with the monitor. At the cafeteria, they tend to sit alone, have lunch (while replying to business emails through their blackberries/laptops) and leave - all without attracting much attention from anyone nearby. Chances are these people were toppers in their colleges. Chances are they are already/soon-to-become project managers, who expect/would expect their subordinates to be like them too. They are well on their ways to become “Hari Sadu”s (for people who don’t know Hari Sadu, you are already becoming one. So please watch more TV and catch the naukri.com advertisement or at least google ‘Hari Sadu ad’)
The “Friends”: These are the people who like to spend time with their friends so much so that that is probably the only reason they come to office. They do complete their work on time and efficiently so (although they seem to hardly do any work from the outside), but would rather hang out with friends after work hours than romance their computer screens like the Hari Sadu’s. They are very good team players and make friends with everyone around them very easily. At the cafeteria, these people make the largest group, taking a lunch break of over 2 hours and a tea break of 45mins (twice a day). Chances are these people were the most popular guys/girls in their college. And there are lesser chances of them becoming project managers; although they could consider taking up a job at the Human Resources.
The “Snails”: These are the kind of people who are extremely hard-working and sincere in their efforts. In fact, they work as if the company’s profit depends on just what they do, but are not fast/ efficient enough in their work. They also, like the Visionaries spend very little time at the cafeteria and slog for long hours and still end up working during the weekends. They were probably not very bright students in their colleges either. Neither do they make good team players as their speed slows down the team. Tough luck, people!
The “Kids”: The freshers. They are just out of college; they think their managers are “cool” people (oh puhleeeze); they think their company is the best (oh puhleeeze, again); they are hyper-active and enthusiastic; they are generally found lunching/taking a break with their college-mates (who are still in the same location) and sending Good Morning, Good Afternoon and Good Evening and other equally dumb forward mails and make complete use of the internal email portal. They are forever online on the internal communicator and have at least 3-4 chat windows open – in short, they are still kids and think IT life is actually like how they show it in the movies. They have a long way to go before their eyes open up to face reality.
The “Players”: These are the ones who are eternally on the bench. Your truly was a part of this group until April 2008. But then, I had to start working (big sigh…) Anyways, the only things that interest this group are blogging, surfing the net pointlessly and downloading small flash games (remember Copter, Bow and Arrow, Beat Him, Sudoku and the rest). I can hear a lot of you saying that this is exactly what I still do at work, but hey I am in a project now and there are no complaints on me (really, ask my PM)…
I am sure there is the whole “Others” category – people who don’t fit into any of these or are a part of more than one category. But this has been a long post already and I should probably save my words for a next one.