Saturday, November 1, 2008

Six Months In Yahoo!

Today I complete working six months at Yahoo! Time for a quick recap. When I started work here in May '08, Lehman Brothers still existed. So did an independent WaMu. Freddie and Fannie were still chugging along on their own. Dow was well over ten thousand. Randy Pausch was updating his website regularly. Web 2.0 was cool. Seven hundred billion sounded like a lot of money to ever come out of government coffers. Hillary was in the news every day. As was Microsoft's hot pursuit of Yahoo!

So indeed six months is a large period of time. Things have changed, many for the worse. There is one glitter of hope remaining though -- Barack. November 4th. Please O God. Let Obama win.

I have enjoyed my days at Yahoo! It has certainly been a better than expected work environment for me. Yahoo! seem like a very employee friendly company. Despite the turbulent times, people seem to be always focused on work. There is a fair deal of media coverage that could easily distract you -- issues like the Microsoft bid, Google deal fed investigation, Jerry-as-CEO bashing, Valleywag leaks, Techcrunch hot lists of ex-Yahoos, etc. Sometimes I feel like Yahoo! should offer a PR position to the likes of Kara Swisher. Or just buy out VW and rebrand as Yahoo! Truemors or something. You know like in middle school you appoint the naughtiest guy as the 'prefect' of the class. Anyways, like it or not, Yahoo! seems to be a real media darling. Most closely scrutinized than any other company I know.

Jerry and Filo can be seen hanging around the cafes. You can sometimes see them standing in line to buy a sandwich just like anybody else. The all-hands from these guys are timely and always fun. This is a big contrast for me personally, compared to my previous company's CEO. There is never a Larry all-hands that I know of.

Parties. There was the Cinco De Mayo party on the first week of my joining. Then the big Summer Picnic for kids and families. Then the hack day party. Octoberfest. Halloweeen parade. And even a Diwali party. Not to mention the various project kickoff and completion parties and the team outings. And now there are plans for a Vegas themed holiday party. I am loving it.

And then there is devel-random@. Most awesome, but to be discussed some other time.

To round it off with a somber note, there is an impending layoff out there. But coming from seven years at Oracle, this is like an annual ritual for me now. Check back here frequently to see if I survived. Fingers crossed.

Update: Dec 10, 2008: I did survive the Yahoo! layoffs today.

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