Please help me curb the growing resentment I have towards my workplace. (very long!)
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
My employer is pretty great, from a work-environment point of view. Pretty relaxed, decent pay for the work, not too stressful, friendly people. I work in software development. But I am overqualified for my position, and software development is not the field I want to work in. I took this job because it has enough overlap with the field that I do want to work in, I wanted some non-academic work experience, and they offered me the job. (So this is pretty much my first "real" job).
However, pretty much as soon as I started, I became aware that our product is, essentially, bad. Poorly developed, incredibly buggy, and has a reputation amongst our clients as being bad (internally there's a lot of uptalk, but I have spoken with clients at seminars/conferences and they have told me that our software is known for being unreliable and untrusted - it was totally humiliating). Additionally, the pace of development is incredibly slow, and people spend huge amounts of time in totally (to my mind) useless documentation processes. It would be different if the documentation was useful, well-written and organized, but it's a mess, and my experience so far is that it is a major hindrance to actually accomplishing anything.
I was hired to develop a new chunk of the program, and I recently finished that. It was a major headache to work within the existing architecture, but I had little choice. Now we, as a team, are in a test & debug phase for the program as a whole. So instead of working on my own section, I am working on the program fundamentals and trying to resolve known bugs. I find myself trying to fix small little errors, only to realize that my options are either to majorly gut and re-design fundamental aspects of the program, or continue the patchwork workarounds that make our software so bad and so difficult to maintain in the first place (no can do!). Many of those who begun and perpetuated this patchwork-workaround-minefield are still with the company and developing. Now it feels like my job is to try to fix my coworkers mistakes. And I resent it. That is very much not a good thing for me, and I am pretty bad at hiding my feelings so it is also bad for my work environment as a whole.
So, what to do? My opinion is that if the others were not capable of detecting the problems I have found, then I definitely can't trust them to fix them, so I kind of *have* to do it (my name is attached to this software now!). And I feel like if I move on from the company later (or sooner, preferably), then I will have little to show for it, since all my changes resulted in only tiny improvements from the user's perspective (and helped more with improving the speed at which new features can be added in the future). More resentment feelings, more bitterness.
Positive aspects here are that the main person responsible for the mess is aware of the situation, is somewhat embarrassed, and offering some support (as opposed to being combative, which I was a little worried about). I don't think that person can really do much to help fix it, but it's good to know he's not working against me and not taking it personally. Also, other more competent people in my team are very happy that I have figured some things out and that I have somewhat of a plan. But it still feels like an uphill battle, and it is a very demotivating situation.
I am searching for other work, but I am not too optimistic that I will get anything for a while and I may have to consider moving to another city. What can I do, until then, to keep myself motivated, and how can I view the situation without just becoming resentful of my coworkers? Thank you for your help!