What Makes A Software Engineer Sad?

Dr Stuart Woolley
CodeX
Published in
8 min readApr 6, 2023

--

Reasons to be upset, one, two, three — in your daily life in the Grand Game.

Photo by cottonbro studio on Pexels

It can be a hard life in the Grand Game of Software Engineering — having to deal with everything from the usual diminishing of pay in accordance with how long you remain at a company to the regressive, frustrating, and frankly obstructive style of pretty much everyone in the hierarchical dog-eat-dog management classes.

If we temporarily cast aside the usual problems of pay and working conditions, there are a number of sub-problems, a number of irritations that can steadily erode our sturdy facades and, eventually, weaken us so much that we frankly lose the will to participate in the game any longer.

Whether it be an explosion with the frustration at attending yet another banal performance review, a gradual withdrawal from participation with coworkers due to growing disinterest in the sheer tediousness of the job, or just a walking away altogether due to the fact that everyone seems to be talking the talk but no-one seems to be walking the walk — sooner or later we run out of patience, motivation, and eventually tact.

Let’s take a look at the straws that gradually accrue on the camel’s back which can make life in the trenches eventually unbearable.

Communication

Workplace¹ communication has always been, supposedly, something that management is supposed to be expert at.

After all, there are so many courses that management both recommend and attend, at no small expense I may add, that we’re continually being proselytized with the many and various ways to be more effective at it.

Oh the PowerPoints², ridiculous clip-art, and ‘brown bag’ sessions we’ve endured where we’re encouraged to “take on board” their recommendations, suggestions, and guidelines but at the end of the day³ they in no way walk the walk.

Management are dreadful at communication, in fact I’d go as far to say that the vast majority of individuals at pretty much every single company I’ve ever encountered in a non-managerial capacity has been a better communicator than your average common or garden management droid.

--

--

Dr Stuart Woolley
CodeX

Worries about the future. Way too involved with software. Likes coffee, maths, and . Would prefer to be in academia. SpaceX, Twitter, and Overwatch fan.