Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

I have some thoughts about the spikes on the death dates.

September: all of the interns go back to school. These people who exist on the fringes of the system manage to get a lot of work done, possibly because they are free of most of the overhead facing real employees. Once they leave, it's up to the FTEs to own whatever was created, and that doesn't always work. I wish I could have kept some of them and swapped them for some of the full-timers.

March/April: Annual bonus time? That's what it used to be, at least, and I say this as someone who quit in May, and that was no accident. Same thing: people leave, and that dooms whatever they left.

September: Googlers return from Burning Man with added appreciation of impermanence and the value of cleansing fire to clear the way for new creation.

The September one is a cute idea, but how many shutdown things immediately had a bunch of interns? For example, with Knol, there weren't any site updates or functionality changes for something at least a year before the final shutdown announcement went out, so how could that have had anything to do with interns? The spike in September is so huge I'm not sure interns explains it.

Maybe people are going on vacations (not necessarily Burning Man) and returning with renewed perspective and distance from things and are more willing to close down things. Not sure how one could test this...

It could also line up with Perf season.

I'm happy to report that I have successfully forgotten exactly when perf happens. There was one supposedly optional perf and one supposedly non-optional perf per year. I'm not sure exactly how that would affect cancellations of projects, though.

One thing I do remember seeing was a LOT of half-baked crap being foisted upon people (especially internal customers) because the end of quarter was approaching. Someone had to make their OKRs, and they didn't care how...

March/April: Annual bonus time?

I'm not sure if it's good or bad that I somehow never managed to work for an employer that offered any kind of bonus, ever. It granted a perspective of "this is what you get, and no more, unless you fight for it," which... again... can be good or bad depending on how you look at it.

I wonder how many 20- and 30-somethings are now or have recently been in a position where bonuses are reasonably common, and how that correlates with the size/type of company they're working for.

Funny, I have the opposite opinion. Without a bonus, it just seems like "this is the work you need to do, and no reason to make any effort to do more". With bonuses that scale with your contribution, I have far more incentive to put in effort above and beyond.

I agree, but it's pretty rare to have individual performance based bonuses unfortunately. It also makes people feel entitled, so they will never go above and beyond without the bonus in the future.

Why should they go above and beyond for free?

Bonuses are the norm in the finance industry. I worked at a financial research company for five years and got a bonus of roughly 10-20% of my salary each year, depending on that year's profits.

At some companies, signing bonuses are starting to become standard.

>September: all of the interns go back to school.

This isn't true. Internships aren't only during the summer for many schools. I'll be starting a four month internship in September as will thousands of my peers.

It's true that Google has interns year-round, but I'm willing to bet a sizable majority of them are over the summer.

Or it is twice a year company wide review and financial planning, not major product decisions driven by temporary employees.

I love how people say Google is awful because it is a corporate hell where engineers have no autonomy, and then claim that most products are launched and run by rogue indivuals.

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact