As multi-tasking expands, the associated inefficiencies become more burdensome. Time accounting when working on multiple projects becomes an increasing burden as does reporting progress to multiple managers and the associated meetings overhead. Finally, managing the computers adds to the burden: when a computer demands 20 minutes to install a critical software update or shutdown, productivity suffers.
All the new ways to communicate (Skype, Fbook, Twitter, Chat..oh and email) have afforded us new ways to talk to anyone, anytime and create new virtual communities, but they have also created a time sink.
When I first got on Facebook a colleague said "Welcome and say goodbye to anoither 45 minutes a day!"
I think attending client calls (unless you are in a core company like IBM Research, Microsoft Research, Google etc) is what gobbles up most of the time of engineers. I've heard such junior engineers spending their time playing games on the office PlayStation, and they couldn't go home because the client calls would have come at any time. So they were made to sit all through the day.
"The claim is real -- engineers are busier than ever, but it's management's job to set the priorities and fight for more resources," Foster stressed."
Managing work hours is crucial if you want your engineers to stay focused and competitive. Most engineers fail to do this, and thus it is the managers job to force them into a fixed regime that includes adequate rest and excercise.
how many really tough problems do you solve when you are not staring at them but instead you are doing something completely separate, like walking, reading a book, even sleeping?
We've all come up with ideas when we're not staring at our work, but how much of our time is spent on "busy" work, the kind that has to be done but is monotonous, requiring no thought? We often need to longer hours just to do that.
There are just people out there that shouldn't be managers. Actually, let me rephrase. There are managers out that that us as engineers shouldn't take crap from and bother working for. I've learned enough that life's too short to be involved in bad work.
Scenario #1 - you're employed and have been looking elsewhere. The manager interested in having an interview should never call the person out of the blue if that person has an email address in the resume. If the manager is asking for basic things that are already in the resume, he has not taken the time to review it. This is a job you should not waste time persuing because that would be an idiot you'll need to deal with - unless you're out of work and need the money
Scenario #2 - Manager should be looking out for his/her team members. If you're in a meeting with other teams where the other team is reporting a problem with the project, don't start immediately putting blame at your own guys in front of other people without fully understanding the situation.
Scenario #3 - There are managers that solely care about numbers and bookings. They're pure sales weasels, not there to manage. Well, I guess 'manage' would be the appropriate term, since they're not there to 'lead'. In any case, they are ones that are so disconnected with technology, people that work for them, completely disregards effots that their team puts in, show no remorse when people from his team leaves. They're so high up in the food chain that they're most interested is how much commission they get from bookings.