After 13 years and change, I’ve moved jobs. Same sector and domain, same city, but slightly different sub-domain. Today is when I start.
I’m not sure how to feel about it. On one hand, I’m losing my relationships, credibility and all the credit I have banked in with my previous firm. I knew the culture and how to work within it. On the other hand, the new job means starting off with a clean slate and a nice steep learning curve for the first year or two. New technologies, architectures and different ways of doing things.
My old friends expected I’d feel trepidation, but if anything, I’m a little numb. As if it hasn’t sunk in. Ingrained habits remain, work dreams have the same participants. I guess it’ll sink in once I’ve spent a week here.
While I’m going through my little shift, the broader industry is going through a seismic shift. Companies are having to decide whether they will continue WFH as the norm or shift back to the office or move to a hybrid model. People are rethinking their commitments to firms based on how their roles, personal situations, and goals mesh with company policies. Undercurrents of dissent are being heard from the most high-profile tech firms such as Google and Apple, but this is a story that will be repeated across every firm.
Personally, I feel this isn’t as cut and dried as people on either side make it out to be, nor is it final. I expect some reversion to the norm, followed by a much longer period of slowly increasing flexibility and experimentation before firms find new equilibriums. Covid-19 has changed the world, and I don’t expect any service or knowledge-based firm to go back to the days of yore fully. There are significant advantages to having a degree of flexibility and choice (even discounting cost savings), just as there is a significant need for teams to work out optimal ways for people to work together and learn organically. My teams have always had an apprenticeship culture, and I don’t see that working as well without having some degree of in-office work.
Here in Bangalore, the city is slowly coming out of the second wave, and I hear of firms looking to start having employees coming in from September or October on a trial basis. I’m looking forward to that, after a year and a half of WFH.
Image Courtesy Danielle MacInnes on Unsplash