The funny little feedback loops in life

It’s been a while since I last blogged, some of you know that I’m now in sunny Lafayette.

A couple of weeks back I went to my new Boss and said:

“How about we do once a week off and everyone can work on anything they want provided they present it to the whole team afterwards?” – You know, a la Atlassian, Google, (Apple just jumped on the bandwagon), and all the other folks out there.

He looks at me and says: “I think that’s a great idea, let me see what we can do”.

I say: “I see a few guys on the team that are very frustrated.” – A while back they were about to make him build something in Access, and I burst out laughing when I heard that. I don’t think it was as funny for him as it was for me.

Funnily enough, on an unrelated note the following weekend, some girl was talking about Yoga and all sorts of magical stuff in life and I decided to send her a youtube link, the classic RSA Animate with the author of Drive an interesting book about the psychology of what motivates us. She puts it on her wall, and I think to myself:

“Damn, I should’ve done that, would’ve gotten me some extra Karma points”.

So, let’s fast forward a couple of weeks.

Today, I walked in the office, and I saw the Director of Research(yes, you heard right. I’m now working for a University) watching the video I sent a week ago.

The video itself is about 2 years old, but apparently Lafayette didn’t get the message, which is not really surprising, since rsa is like the british version of Ted, and the only reason I knew about RSA was because in one of the older startups I worked at the Founder watched all sorts of crazy podcasts(Hi Rene).

He asks me if I’ve seen it before, apparently the second new Boss told him about it and I say yes, long time ago.

Anyway, couple of hours later my new Boss runs down the floor and gathers all the engineers, and he says:

“Guys, I just had this Idea…” We nod. “Wouldn’t it be nice” he goes on, “If we did like a mini CajunCodeFest every quarter? A mini hackathon, and you guys can work on anything you want, and we have Pizza and Booze at the end?”.

And he goes on: “I was just thinking how we could keep people happing working here, apart from money”

My coworker jumps in and says: “I wouldn’t mind working on some non Microsoft stuff every now and then”.

“Reza what do you think?” he asks, “I think it’s a good idea.”

Feel free to now imagine me with my broadest Alice in Wonderland cat grin and nodding, not saying anything.

So that’s it, two seemingly unrelated events, I get what I want, and management getting new ideas. What I found most amazing though, is that noone knows or remembers where the spark came from, well except the coworkers that I told it. But it’s ok they’ll forget in time.

Ps. if you tell me one more time, that the great Edison invented the lightbulb, I’ll setup your firewall to rickroll you on random intervals so you’ll never find out it’s not a virus.

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