Last Day in Building XY

(Given that someone once got terminated for posting a picture of the building that receives the mail, I’ll go the safe route and NOT mention a building by number.) Longish and Ramblingish post to follow.

I spent the last week finishing up my work in Office.

Okay, maybe I should start a little earlier.

Some unspecified period of time ago (about a month or so), I interviewed with three different teams outside of the Office organization. I had very specific reasons for wanting to leave Office, but the only one I’ll blog about is the fact that in four years in Office, I have yet to have a feature go all the way from design through to completion. I have a great deal of technical knowledge on a wide range of topics, but I wanted to be able to have something actually SHIP. All the groups I interviewed with are completing features on a much shorter time frame than Office will usually consider — two of the teams are using Agile development methodologies, with iterations scheduled for approximately 5 week cycles; the other team is shipping on a three to six month schedule per feature. Yay for being nearly guaranteed features!

My interview results were very mixed — my technical skills were frequently complimented, but two of the three teams didn’t offer me a position based on my lack of seeing features through to completion. See the definition of irony.

The third team did offer; I’ve worked with them before, and enjoyed the people I worked with. The team was just at somewhat cross-purposes to my team, so that collaboration didn’t go as well as it could have. However, I liked the team, they liked me, and they ship in a year, so if I’m miserible…

That was three weeks ago. I then had to finish up what I was doing, and close everything down before leaving the organization. I completed my work — no slacking — and then had some documentation to finish up.

This week wasn’t fun.

I tried to go with my team to lunch every day; I wrote two “brain dump” documents (the one was designed to somewhat mimic the thematic elements of Dante’s Divine Comedy; the other opened with Mandrina’s idea: “Dear Developers: Good luck with that. Sincerely, Me.” The rest of the page was blank.). I said good-bye to the people I could; I know there are a lot of people I missed. Today, however, was especially bad.

I had finished all of my work-work yesterday. I finished the brain dump document, and stayed late to do some packing. I didn’t even watch TV!

Today, then, all I had to do was pack.

It was lonely, and depressing work. Garbage here and there, copy this file, pack this box full of books, that one full of knick-knacks. Stickers on every box, and handwriting to identify priorities for me. By the end of the day, my career was in a set of six boxes, and one desktop computer.

By the time I left, everyone else had cut out early. I didn’t really get a chance to say goodbye to anyone. Art,┬áDavid, and Jonathan — the former two are on my team, the latter was just in my hall — made a point to stop by before leaving, so thanks to them. No one else said goodbye.

I’ll see them all again — I’m going to be attending the ship party, post-mortems, visting, etc. I just wish I had had a chance to say goodbye.

I wore my Office 12 baseball cap out tonight, and told people (who know I never wear hats) I was depressed. No one believed me. I don’t know if that’s a comment on me, or on them.

For saying goodbye to where I spent the better part of the last three years of my life, it was pretty much a non-event. I could have done with a bit more… something.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

  1. Andrew says:

    So, I screwed up.

    I also had Dan and Paul, a tester on my team and my manager, come by to say goodbye. My bad.