Dealing with marketing types...

bruce bedouglas at earthlink.net
Sat Jun 11 19:27:26 CEST 2005


i don't know what the original thread is/was...

but.. if you are part of an initial project.. get in writing what your role
is!!!! if you're as a partner, get it in writing... if you're as a hired
gun.. get it in writing... if you can't get anything in writing.. then make
sure you have your own copies of any/all code that you're created/been a
part of...

in this day/age, you need to protect yourself....

and trust me, if your code is valuable, and you walk away with it because
you feel you've been treated in an unfair manner (assuimng no written
statement of your role), then let the other guy come after you... things get
resolved in a much more equitable manner when the concerned parties are
reasonably equal...

-bruce


-----Original Message-----
From: python-list-bounces+bedouglas=earthlink.net at python.org
[mailto:python-list-bounces+bedouglas=earthlink.net at python.org]On Behalf
Of tom
Sent: Saturday, June 11, 2005 9:51 AM
To: python-list at python.org
Subject: Re: Dealing with marketing types...


On Fri, 10 Jun 2005 21:57:40 -0700, fuzzylollipop wrote:

> I was completely serious, he is _NOT_ going to win this one. He has
> already lost. I have been on both sides of this scenario, the "new guys"
> were brought in and will win since they are the new "experts from out of
> town".

Not only do I take you seriously - I agree!

I also have been on both sides of this scenario although my take on it is
slightly different.  It's not so much the "experts from out of town" as it
is the tendency to dump the guy(s) that brought them to the party.

The sequence goes like this:
1) When there is little or no money to be made, you start out with an
implied status as a partner. This means you work long + extra hours for
little pay on the promise that you will be rewarded when/if success comes.

2) Then the product gets out the door and it's more long hours with little
pay.  Much massaging and tweaking and still little money incoming.

3) Success & money start to roll in. Now your status drops from partner to
hired hand. An overpaid hired hand at that.  Now that the heavy lifting is
done, managment is wondering whether they need to actually reward the
guy(s) who brought them to the party.  The rational parts of their brains
shut down while every fiber of their larcenous beings wants them to
believe they can now dispense with the high priced talent (you!) for some
low bucks commodity labor.  There scads of outsourcing firms tripping over
one another to sell them the latter.

> There may be some other _VALID_ business reason that management has
> already made up their mind to hire these Java people. Probably because
> they want to sell the company or merge with someone or something and
> having a Java product would make them more attractive.

Yes, there is a possible _VALID_ reason. That would be the perception,
probably accurate, that a technology like Java will shelter them from
total dependency on some individual developer (you!).  In other words,
there is a greater likelihood that they can find replacement talent should
they need it.  Thats the optimistic view.  More often it sinks to the
sleazy when they decide to stiff the original guys who did all the extra
work up front.  If they can replace them, there will be no need to "pay
off" on the extra work they did up front.

I have had this happen to me as an employee.  Later, as an outside
consultant, I was frequently disgusted to realize how many manager/owners
were merely seeking to avoid the payoff for the guys who went the extra
mile to give them a profitable product. Tis business in the USA, sad to
say.

> There are 2 things he can do.
>
> 1. Get your resume ready and approach the CEO or whomever and say. Why
> is this happening? Since I can guarantee you they have already decided
> to port this app to Java.

Resume ready is certainly wise and I concur with your gaurantee.

> 2. Be quiet, keep his head down, learn Java fasssstt, start agreeing
> with the new party line and get on the bandwagon if he really wants to
> stay at this company ( I wouldn't )

I disgree here.  The party line is nothing but a cover.  The goal is to
break the dependency on the guru(s) who did the developement or worse,
outright replacement.  The likelihood of staying on is slim and will
become increasingly unpleasant unless the employer is so lacking in
concience as to fire him outright.

Let me add an Item #3 -
If you have some entrepeneurial savvy and can keep your emotions out of
it tou can simply tell them you have decided strike out on your own and
tell them that you will be available. They will be happy to hear you are
leaving and happier still to hear you can be available for backup.
Their goals and fears are addressed at the same time.  AND there is a very
high possibility that they will *need* you at a later date for which you
can charge them dearly.

That last item #3 has actually worked for me with (2) prior employers.
I did have to eat my indignation and keep it friendly but it did pay off
in the end.
Thomas Bartkus


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