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It’s not the job that sucks, it’s the people (2012) (meetingboy.com)
61 points by motivic on Feb 17, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 14 comments

I have felt this way in reverse. Before and during college I worked in supermarkets and clothes shops. Those jobs were fine but some places I really hated going to work everyday and some places I felt really good about. Same exact work but how people treat each other matters a great deal. When I learned what it was like to work somewhere and feel pretty good going in, it was huge for me. I'm loyal to my current job at a nonprofit because even though the pay is not the highest, everybody cares about the work and helps each other. That is good for me.

Lovely little write-up about the staring point, growth, and observations. I have a prima face nodding along with a lot of the thoughts put forward.

I mean, it's taken me two plus years to figure it out, but I've finally come to the realization that my former Boss must wake up every day in his bed, reach over to his night-stand, grab a pistol, put it in his mouth, then sigh real deep and decide, "No, not today," before coming into the office. It's what I tell myself to contextualize his never-ending negativity. At least the impatient manipulative behavior of asking two people for the exact same help was only once or twice a month. "Hell is other people" ain't just for introverts.

This piece touches on a few different ideas:

1. Many workers are frustrated with their job, and the common thread is how they treated by other people

2. Investigates whether an organized upheaval of the work status quo is likely in the near future

3. Suggests everybody's job can suck, no matter how nice it appears from the outside (even the CEO)


I'd like to react to point 3. Though I think any job can suck, I think those with disproportionate influence (i.e. CEO) have much more ability to improve the status quo and not make things suck for those below them.

What I see is an irony where those with the MOST responsibility are those with the least influence (the "lowest"). Those who have the most ability to fix things (investors, C-level) are the ones who almost never get fired, just moved to another position or asked to resign with a generous package.

FYI, the post is 5 years old.

true, but the theme is fairly timeless. I've always heard it (and seen this personally as an employee and manager myself) boiled down to "people don't leave companies, they leave managers".[1] and there is a lot of writing / data out there to support it.

[1] http://www.forbes.com/sites/victorlipman/2015/08/04/people-l...

As a manager that line is always in the back of my mind when I'm trying to figure out how to help an employee do better. Turnover is not cheap, and you can be somebody's jerk boss and not even know it if you aren't careful.

I stuck around at my last job for a long time because of my manager. When interviews I was evaluating the role but most of the time It really came down to my new potential manager vs my old manager. I needed to see that they would be able to offer / teach / give me something that my old manager wasnt able to. It's not an easy way to interview but it is really satisfying when you find the right fit.

This is good advice. My current manager has a good mix of high standards, clear feedback, and letting me try my own things.

I feel like I'm constantly trying to evaluate if I'm being too tough or too friendly, and I'm not sure how to recognize the truth. And I think it varies by employee.

Very much. I come from a creative writing and performance background where people are constantly giving each other feedback, and eagerly looking to edit/improve their work. In that world a lot of people feel like what they are doing isn't ever perfect and welcome suggestions. In other industries this is ... Not always how people feel. You can't help everybody, and you won't be the right boss for every person you meet.

and one of the big challenges is getting unadulterated feedback. too often, even if you do your best to set up a culture of trust and openness with your employees, you will get a filter on what they are going to tell you.

having ways to anonymously get regular feedback from your team can help a lot. as well as getting as much second hand data from other teams / managers as possible.

I might expand that to "management", rather than the specific manager. I disagree with decisions made at higher levels in the company (local layoffs, then international outsourcing, when the company's not struggling by any stretch of the imagination). My manager's awesome, though.

The new developers are nice enough, but the culture in the office here was taken out back and shot by management 3 or 4 levels up.

I read it because I thought this said it was written by a five year old... I was disappointed to find it to be informative and spot on despite being five years old. Has inspired me though to find some five year olds to exploit into writing prose on the internet.

Older material is more than welcome on HN. We've added 2012 to the title.

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