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In companies I know, there is no shortage of tools and systems for sharing thoughts at work: email, Slack / chat, etc.
Over nearly 30 years in industry as a coder/developer/consultant/etc., I found I have held back more than occasionally.
Thinking of things you might want to share—e.g.,
* questions / problems
* ideas / suggestions
specifically things you think could add value to others and/or the company itself in some way—
so not things you could express just so you could "watch the world burn"
Do you ever decide not to share some of them?
* How often does this happen?
* What is(are) the reason(s) for stopping yourself?
* Can you give any examples? (Be as specific as you can while still feeling comfortable with sharing here )
I've learned that sharing those items you mentioned, it's very important to choose the right people to share them with.
There are coworkers for technical discussions, though frankly I have in the past found it more fruitful to simply ask a question here.
There are the right kind of managers that will take my idea and promote it. Rarely is it fruitful to do this with coworkers, as they have no influence.
Observations and opinions fall into the b*tch session category, and the squirrel on the picnic bench or the friend who doesn't work at the company is the best person to share those with.
And then there's "talking to myself", particularly when it comes to adding value. I first want to make my life easier, and if I do something useful, I'll share it with others that use the same processes and would appreciate an improvement.
And in the final analysis, whether I share anything at all depends on the gestalt of the entire company -- are the coworkers burnt out and just collecting a paycheck? Are the managers terrified of change or just morons? Are there so many regulatory processes in place that any improvement gets drowned in forms, procedures, approvals, etc.?
Having worked in that kind of environment, and hating it, I share nothing -- I still do things to make my life easier, but nobody knows about it, and when I leave, those improvements are gone forever.
Happily where I work now, ideas, opinions, observations and questions are welcome, though it's still important to voice them to the right people.
As a senior developer you should be sharing nearly everything you can with the juniors, not doing so handicaps their learning. Even the world burning opinions should be aired, let them decide if you are an old idjit.
When you get far enough up the skill/knowledge ladder and become basically bullet proof you really do not need to be delicate about expressing yourself, even or especially to management.
Never underestimate the power of human stupidity -
I'm old. I know stuff - JSOP
We have too many. Internal wikis all over the place, forums, intranet, internal reports, internal chat, dedicated internal web portals, sharepoint (yet another masterpiece of failed software, do not get me started on it). I'd spend at least half of my work time reading everything that is published every day, uncoordinated, unlimited ; sometimes development teams race for their tool to be THE tool used in the company worldwide - the amount of money spent in these is just insane, all of this to be a modern web x.0 (replace x by whatever is the last industry bullshit version) company.
I wish people would rather actually work instead of being talked into "enterprise social media", because that's what we hired them for first place.
You want to share ? No problem, but then please only when you are down with everything else - until then, keep it for you and try to get some work done.
I worked at a company who had an internal message board something from Microsoft.
Can't remember the name, but I think it's now discontinued?
Anyway, people could post whatever, but it wasn't used a lot.
When I first started working there I posted some interesting new tech on there, or some cool code I found.
Stuff like an upcoming Visual Studio, new Windows Server or SQL Server, I even remember posting something about COBOL.NET just for fun.
Unfortunately, I rarely got any replies or I got them from the same people who I also talked to face-to-face.
We had an official person who's job it was to investigate new tech for the company, but all he posted on there where new versions of Oracle.
At one point some people said to me I was doing that guys job more than the guy himself.
Unfortunately, I already let management know I was available for the position as it was worth an extra €500 a month, but they only needed one and the current guy was the boss' cousin or something.
Ultimately, I realized no one really had any interest in tech and the company was just doing what they did for the past 30 years with very few innovations.
I stopped posting and found another job, just like some of my younger coworkers
I think the current average age at that company is well over 40 and maybe even nearing 50 (about 30 employees, mostly programmers)
I play it company by company. Some firms are open to suggestions and advice and have various platforms and methods to receive feedback, but some firms are very closed off to it, believe it or not. If I'm in one of the former companies then I tend to use the available opportunities to leave feedback, if I'm in the latter then I'll speak up if it's something egregious but I'll rarely fight too hard for change, I consider the fact that I spoke up as having fulfilled by duty and if the company want to ignore my advice they're free to do so.
Just like Eddy above, I share everything significant.
What would be the point of keeping important stuff under a blanket?
To look good at the expense of others?? A very short-sighted way of survival.
Revenge on those who didn't share with me? I wouldn't want to work in such a work atmosphere.
Revenge on the company? I wouldn't want to work in such a company.
"If we don't change direction, we'll end up where we're going"
One of the lessons I've learned early on in my career as a software developer is that if I have a suggestion for a feature that people actually want, the response is very often along the lines of "great, when can you demo it?"
I always have more items on my plate than I have time to complete, so when I know a suggestion means an additional work item for myself, when I'm already swamped...I either withhold the idea, even if (IMO) it might turn out to be a great feature, or I discuss it with a coworker and let him bring it up with The Powers That Be (even if it means he gets credited with the idea).
It's often the case that I'm still the one who's going to end up implementing it anyway, but at least they are the ones asking me to do it; it's not me offering to take on the additional work. So that gives me a little room to negotiate some extra time.
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