I recall the day when I was called in to the company for an interview late March. It was a not-so-large office on the second floor of a house on the Carpenter Road. My interviewers Luke and Chris greeted me and asked me to take off my shoes at the door, because everyone in the office walk on the carpet with only socks on, which I found that really intriguing. Then I noticed the bookshelf and the couch near the front door, and a full kitchen that followed afterwards. Luke first introduced everyone in the office to me, and then showed me around. Inside of the main working area there is a large TV screen with Xbox, puzzles, Rubiks cubes, some bean bags, more couch, and even exercises balls to sit on. Standing tables and shelves. On the side there are 2 meeting rooms and another side room for relax and personal matters. As someone who only had experience with conventional office(aka.cubical), and occasionally open tables, these gadgets for gaming, exercising and relaxing in the office really amazed me. Before I even got my interview result back, I already enjoyed the office setting a lot.
Indeed, ever since the first day in the office, I never felt anxious at work. I think it’s because the atmosphere at work is laid back, to some extent. We can sit wherever we want to do work, on the floor if you wish. People can grab food and snacks from the fridge all the time, and play games during lunch like most programmers in the office do. Our big boss Bobby is very open to different ideas. He walks around from time to time to check in with employees, tells jokes and sits at the same table during lunch(catered 4 days a week) with everyone, I can call everyone in the office by name, ask any questions(work related or otherwise) and even offer feedbacks(when appropriate) to those who has been been in the office for years. I’m able to speak my mind during meetings and always well respected by others. As an intern, I don’t feel like I’m subordinate to anyone, but more like an equal part of a team which I belong. Such open atmosphere makes feel at ease, and as a result I’m more than willing to put 100% efforts into work for the well-being of my company. While the atmosphere is chill, there’s still clear structure at work, in terms of what and how to do to keep things going. I used to feel lost before Moreover, I appreciate the fact that we are flexible about our schedule so that if I have other things going on I can take off early or coming in late when I need to, as long as I tell my supervisor in advance. In the past 3 weeks there was never a day where I need to work overtime and I’m completely free from work once I leave the office. The separation of work and life allow me to be super focused at work while still keep hobbies of my own after work(despite the fact I’m usually very tired when I got home) , which I discovered to be quite important for my wellbeing. Meanwhile I have heard so many of my friends intern in investment bank, fortune 500 corporate that basically had no life outside of work and stayed up till 1 or 2 in the morning on a weekly basis. I’m so glad that I dodge the bullet by not applying to those companies in the first place, because I know I would become malfunction and strained under that kind of high pressure. Overall, I considered myself pretty lucky that I can find a place that I’m happy to work for.
P.S Played Mario Kart 8 on Nintendo Switch yesterday at lunch in the office:) They seemed to have turned the office into a tiny Nerf Gun battle field during the July 4th weekend! All the darts on the ground!