No interest to work. Is it just me?

F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
Apr 16 326 Comments

I am new to being a SWE and to the corporate world. I feel unenthusiastic and don't want to work at all.

Some context:

At this moment, I have no good guidance/lead at work. And, my team usually WFH and I'm the only one who comes to office daily. This makes it so much harder to have a good relationship with the team members. School was so much better, we as team members used to talk, work together, have lunch, go out. None of that happens at work.

I finish the tasks assigned, but, I don't have any motivation to do them. I also feel large portion of the work which I do is monotonous on legacy systems. I feel like I'm not learning anything.

When I'm stuck at work, I'm stuck, as my lead hardly knows how to guide me. And, everything is tribal knowledge amongst team members. Zero documentation and bare minimum automated testing.

I don't know what I'm doing with my life and at work. I feel I should change companies. But, cannot as I'm waiting for my work visa.

Am I a bad fit for SWE career? Or is it just my team?

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TOP 326 Comments
  • Facebook
    Nevernude

    Facebook

    BIO
    .
    Nevernudemore
    Yeah, welcome to the rat race
    Apr 16 10
    • Amazon gotteeth
      For 1s and 2s: Look at code reviews, incoming tickets, sev2 count, design docs, ask to meet with sdes both 1 and 2, 3s sometimes operate on a different level so might have different opinions.
      Apr 16
    • Uber hpcu24
      @anonts This is Uber specific, but you can get enough data points from the interviewers(team members) during your interview. Don’t forget, interview is a two-way street!
      Apr 16
    • Uber qtnsa
      I have a lot of fun at uber. On my third team, and gets better every time. Just gotta build impactful things with teammates more passionate than you
      Apr 16
    • Google
      felS50

      Google

      PRE
      Facebook
      felS50more
      Apr 16
    • Google
      felS50

      Google

      PRE
      Facebook
      felS50more
      Oh whoops accidentally butt-dialed my green onions 😂
      Apr 16
  • Oath / Mgmt Atinlay2
    I don’t think you’ll be happy anywhere
    Apr 16 60
    • Oath / Mgmt Atinlay2
      @OP I’m not insulted at all.

      @Grab. Yes, I do
      Apr 17
    • Grab 321497
      If you call it feedback i genuinely wish you some joy in your life. The projection indicates that you must be very miserable
      Apr 17
    • Oath / Mgmt Atinlay2
      I’m just fine, thanks
      Apr 17
    • SAP / Eng nolongrsap
      An example of helpful feedback by ^
      Apr 19
    • Grab 321497
      Atinlay2, it’s time you changed the username
      Apr 19
  • Homeaway starbuc
    Its the same everywhere
    Apr 16 7
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      I think the best thing for me to do is find another job then.
      Apr 16
    • Homeaway starbuc
      I meant to say thats its the same in most of the places. In my experience, this is a result of a company being too big/no longer growing. It seems that you want to be challenged/grow - I would recommend you try out a startup.
      Apr 16
    • Apple Hansel2
      BS about it being a problem of company growth. It’s an org problem - get out while you can. Interview at Apple, as I can guarantee you will meet your future team members at interviews
      Apr 16
    • Airbnb / Eng lim
      Not true ;)
      Apr 16
    • Coinbase / Eng YdEg78
      It’s not the same everywhere, but you have to work to get into a company that you like. My first job sucked but it allowed me to get into a company that I liked. You have to fight to find a way to work on things that interest you.
      Apr 16
  • You are mentioning things that don’t gel well with your personality and a lack of a quidance as a new developer and you re thinking that you are not a good software engineer? Why would you put that burden on yourself? 1, don’t expect co workers to be friends but also find co workers u can have lunch with. Find your own fun outside of work 2. Sounds like bad culture at your job 3. Find a job with better team culture and then ask the question again
    Apr 16 7
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Setting up team lunches and board games, that's so nice of you.

      Finding our own crowd makes complete sense.
      Apr 16
    • Amazon anonts
      @Nevernude Question is how to find your crowd? It is hard enough finding friends. Finding a team like you say sounds impossible to me.
      Apr 16
    • Facebook
      Nevernude

      Facebook

      BIO
      .
      Nevernudemore
      It's really hard.

      My best suggestions, which are not great, are to keep an eye out for events and attend/intrude on as many as possible.

      In my experience, people who play board games or have some beers are always happy to have more people. A good start to hang out is something like "do you do this regularly? If you need more people, message me / add me to the group"
      Apr 16
    • 1. You might not, let’s just put that out there. You are co workers so that you can get alone, be respectful to each other, and get the job done. The satisfaction you are looking for must come from your own friends and family. You are setting yourself up for disappointment if you don’t. You can find awesome co workers but you might not as well.

      2. Yes

      3. Couldn’t you apply other places that would sponsor you? If not, use the next 6 months to keep studying. It’s hard esp when you are drained from an unpleasant day at work but it’s better to do it now than to start studying in October and realize you’re not passing any interviews. Trust this advice. At some point or another, you will have a job or team that you don’t like and you’re going to have to fight for what you want
      Apr 16
    • Asurion rm -rf /
      @OP - Look, I felt the same way. The coworkers being driven and motivated have the ability to infect motivation into you. I have seen it myself. If you are in a situation where you can’t quit, try finding motivation in a different challenge, like gym, biking, walk miles. Set up goals in your personal life and I can tell you it has helped me.

      In the meanwhile, prepare. Leetcode can motivate too. Gather the ammunition that you will need when you get to October. Read technology books, they are extremely enlightening. Preparation took months for me and I got offers from Google and Amazon.
      Apr 17
  • Indeed / Other
    unikorn

    Indeed Other

    PRE
    Google
    BIO
    Nope
    unikornmore
    Fucking millennial
    Apr 16 2
    • Oath / Mgmt Atinlay2
      ^This
      Apr 16
    • Oracle / IT
      l00tb0x

      Oracle IT

      PRE
      Ericsson, National Instruments
      l00tb0xmore
      Fucking boomer ...
      Apr 17
  • New / Design
    tacosmello

    New Design

    PRE
    Raizlabs, MullenLowe
    tacosmellomore
    Ahhhh that sucks. I’m sorry you’re experiencing this but it’s actually a lesson. You’re pain is real and it’s telling you something. It’s telling what you value and crave out of work.

    The antithesis of the things you’re describing exists. You’ve got to take what you can out of your current situation, and better yourself on the side too. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR CAREER.

    It’s a startling statement, but also empowering and awesome if you act on it.

    You’re not a bad fit for your career choice. You’re at a bad fit for this company and team. Those aren’t the same things at all.

    Congrats on identifying a problem. Now devise a way to fix it and act. You can do this.
    Apr 16 1
    • Apple 143143
      🙏 I needed to hear that too.
      Apr 17
  • DigitalOcean / Eng jetlag
    Literally no one wants to work. We do it for the money so we can fuck off at the end of the day and live our lives. Even at the best jobs, this holds true.
    Apr 16 3
    • New / Sales LadyCloser
      A guy I worked with won the lottery. He kept working 1.5 years then quit when they promoted him. He disappeared somewhere to Mozambique to live the rest of his days on a beach.
      At first he was motivated by money, then achieving, but when that box was checked he behaved like the rest of us and stopped working at all.
      I just don’t understand how he hid it. I’d be spending conspicuously and lavishly lol.
      Apr 16
    • Microsoft
      OIC-u812

      Microsoft

      PRE
      Amazon
      OIC-u812more
      I haven’t had to work for many years, but I do because I enjoy it. I still negotiate my salary and try to get increased scope, but it’s not because I must, it’s because I want to. I’m even taking a new job at a new company now because I want something more challenging.
      Apr 17
    • New / R&D CanEng
      Please don’t speak for all of humanity. Yes, that’s true for the vast majority of people but not all. I absolutely love to work given the right project.
      Apr 17
  • New wGsQ24
    Don't be discouraged by the responses here. Your work place situation is not normal. You should move to a more motivated workplace where people don't work on legacy stuff and don't wfh all the time. It makes a world of a difference early in your career. Later on, it can be more productive to work remotely as one gets more focused time.
    Apr 16 2
    • New wGsQ24
      Especially ignore folks who say this is expected and you are entitled. I think others have settled for what they have, which is their choice. You have a choice to go to a place where people do interesting work. Don't sell yourself short 😉
      Apr 16
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Thank you!!
      Apr 16
  • Capital One ssn123
    I was just gonna post something like this.
    Apr 16 2
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Damn, I'm not alone.
      Apr 16
    • Accolade / Eng JefN
      I already post the same 2 days back, just got 2 comments and one of them was depressing from that guy from the oath.
      Apr 17
  • Facebook mHkk09
    Sounds like you should find a job where the team doesn't WFH
    Apr 16 10
    • Nvidia Ibfdgj
      Yep, plus everything is tribal knowledge, zero documentation.
      Apr 16
    • Facebook mHkk09
      You're not alone, work relationships are really important. It sounds like your team just sucks.

      The tribal knowledge and lack of documentation is true in most places though
      Apr 16
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      I agree. I feel like a nomad at work too. No sense of direction and helplessness.

      Really wish I had a good mentor/lead or a few team members whom I could talk to.
      Apr 16
    • New / Eng
      TechLeed

      New Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      TechLeedmore
      Take advantage of the free time and learn.
      Apr 16
    • Affirm wn8
      That’s a huge about of WFH, lots of teams aren’t like that. Mine for example... people WFH maybe only once every month.
      Apr 16
  • Snapchat pVIM70
    This is the most relatable post I’ve ever read here
    Apr 16 2
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Sorry Snap that you've to go through this too. I know how bad it can get.

      Almost everyone here suggested to move on and find another team/company. I'm guessing with Snap on your resume it should open some doors for you. Hopefully you'll find a better place! Good luck.
      Apr 16
    • Oracle dgIL42
      Agree, I can relate as well... problem is I am the tribal guy, but am tired and fed up...I feel locked with my skill set 😢
      Apr 16
  • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
    OP
    As I can't reply to every single comment: Thank you to every single one who commented. Every single viewpoint and tip is very helpful.

    Talking about this definitely helps. I feel better knowing that the root cause is not me and I can change this situation.

    I think more people should just get their suppressed feelings out. Blind has been such a great community and I wish I had such coworkers.
    Apr 16 0
  • Uber MSVe80
    Work is less structured than school. Don’t expect everything to be handed to you on a plate.

    At this stage in your career, you should be doing a lot of job-related learning by yourself btw.
    Apr 16 9
    • Uber MSVe80
      Also you could say something like “X seems very busy, could you suggest someone else”, or ask for a project where you’ll be collaborating closely with another teammate (not the lead).
      Apr 16
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Good idea, Uber! The project which I'm on, the only person who "knows" this legacy codebase is my lead.

      I think I can try to find a newer project and work with another teammate.
      Apr 16
    • A good manager at any stage of your career can make your job a joy or a nightmare.

      Outline what you want to do both in current job and career wise. Plan a 1:1 with your manager. Agree on outcomes that deem your contribution a success. Ask how your role contributes to your manager's success.

      If your manager won't engage, keep looking for a new role. A good manager appreciates initiative and will be happy to talk current role and career path.

      Good luck.
      Apr 16
    • SAP quo vad
      OP, been there, can fully relate. Look for a new project/ team. It can be extremely draining to have no one to help you out when you are totally stuck & wasting HOURS on something that could be resolved in only a few minutes, had someone who knew the topic & was not averse to help, was around. It is critical for managers to build well-functioning teams, else, the best members can end up being just that: members who feel like individual contributors, on the fringe & not engaged/ unable to contribute fully, due to unhealthy team dynamics
      Apr 16
    • Verizon XbVH67
      What you experienced in school was just that, an environment designed for you to learn. Work is different, now it's up to you to manage your path. Another thought here :if you can get to know all the various members on the project, you might be able to gain further knowledge without relying on your less than helpful lead. I agree with many of the manager comments. Your manager is responsible, ultimately, for the team and usually how the team performs is a direct reflection on his /her guidance. There are managers out there that do not engage and it's up to you to ensure you continue to move forward. That does involve imitative on your part, but you'll quickly become the knowledgeable 'go-to' person on the team. Having that in your pocket is always a good thing. Unfortunately, there seems to be quite a few companies out there that don't seem to put as much emphasis on documentation. It's up to you to document what helps you, and will be helpful for your future projects. You might discuss with your manager their thoughts about some specific internal training they would recommend.
      Apr 16
  • Intel dObv43
    I have experienced this and how I got over with it.
    - I offer to help out other team in my spare time
    -this helped me build my skills and get more visibility
    - interesting projects started to come my way
    - now I have good visibility and fun projects
    - the key is to do more that what's asked out of you
    - have lunch with a random person in the cafeteria
    - you need to talk to ppl at work to feel alive
    Apr 16 3
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      For doing more than what is asked out of me:
      I'm still learning and very early in my career. So it makes it a bit harder for me to contribute to outside projects. But, I totally see how this can help!

      Lunch and talking to people:
      I think you are spot on here. I feel dead at work. Just lonely and doing my work. Talking to people is such a key thing, one of the biggest thing which I miss. At school, we always had folks during lunch/coffee.

      Being on the introvert side it's hard for me to have lunch with a random person but I'll try to talk to random people more. Hopefully, I might make new friends.
      Apr 16
    • Intel ♥️⭕
      I think most new grads go through this, others just pretend like they are doing okay. It takes time and it's a process. If your are in the same state after 6 more months, switch!!
      Apr 16
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Thanks, Intel. I'll definitely do that. It's been a few months in this state but there have been some helpful insights in this post. I'll try them out before I call it done with my team.
      Apr 16
  • New wkn5x8w
    "Work hard to get what you like, else you'll have to like what you get"
    Apr 16 2
    • New / Design
      tacosmello

      New Design

      PRE
      Raizlabs, MullenLowe
      tacosmellomore
      Damn that’s good
      Apr 16
    • Accolade / Eng JefN
      It's deep
      Apr 17
  • New / Eng
    Xrbg57

    New Eng

    PRE
    Boeing, 500 Startups
    Xrbg57more
    Try to find a project you can work on that is fun for you and still shows some positive impact to your company.

    Go to work with a positive attitude. Try to talk to your coworkers with a smile.

    Happiness is contagious.

    Be the light at the end of the tunnel.

    I know. I sound like a silly self help book. But hey maybe go buy one of those and read.

    Just find something positive or at least something you can improve because fixating on immutable structures will surely bring you dread.
    Apr 16 2
    • Goldman Sachs Abarith
      Love it
      Apr 16
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      You're right about everything what you said. I think I can do this at a new job but not at my current workplace.

      Here's why:
      1. I'm extremely exhausted trying to be positive with my team/work
      2. I feel like my legacy projects aren't as interesting as FB/G/AMZN/Uber who are directly adding value to customers
      3. My co workers hardly come to work as they WFH, have no one to talk to with a smile

      I really appreciate your advice, but, I generally feel low and doing the above things are extremely hard.
      Apr 16
  • Google / Eng
    odd prime

    Google Eng

    PRE
    LinkedIn
    odd primemore
    Makes me miss LinkedIn. The engineering practices were god-awful but I had a couple coworkers that I liked and actually looked forward to spending the day with. Here it’s just eating lunch alone and being a passive observer to conversations in Chinese.
    Apr 16 3
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      I thought G always had a very good culture. It doesn't?

      Or is it just your team/org?
      Apr 16
    • Google engg1
      @odd prime - Which org and location?
      Apr 16
    • SAP quo vad
      Sorry to hear, odd prime. And that is why having an inclusive and collaborative (vs. competitive) team/ work culture is so critical. It can make all the difference between a high performing employee & one who leaves the company, in spite of said company being superlative in all other ways (as your scenario unfortunately shows).
      Apr 16
  • Amazon / Eng
    elatedowl

    Amazon Eng

    PRE
    Amazon
    elatedowlmore
    Do leet code and get out when you can. Sitting around and sulking won't do you any good my friend.
    Apr 16 1
    • F5 Networks / Eng moveon?
      OP
      Yeah. Looks like this is my only option.
      Apr 16
  • Amazon LlFO08
    Dude! Is not the team is you! Reach me and I can share some Goodreads. I was going through something similar in the past.
    Apr 16 7
    • SAP quo vad
      'Is not the team'. How did you come to that conclusion?
      Apr 16
    • Amazon LlFO08
      Apr 16
    • Apple EdenFruit
      I agree, with the assessment that it's not the team. If OP believes it's the team, then the solution is easy.
      Apr 16
    • Amazon LlFO08
      Basically you are looking for purpose! Maybe is not the right place for you, blaming them won’t get you where want to be.
      Apr 16
    • SAP quo vad
      Sure, blaming them won't get him where he wants to be, but that doesn't mean they are blame-free. In this case, applying the word 'team' to OP's group seems like a misnomer, as the individuals don't behave like one. That is what I was alluding to, in my comment above
      Apr 16
  • Amazon never.more
    You are responsible for your happiness, not other people. If you don't enjoy the situation, either work to change it and allow time for the change to happen, or find a new situation.
    Apr 16 0