Monday, May 9, 2011

We, the (Software) People


What is it that alienates the software industry people to the natives or rest of the universe? Do they have horns or garish tails? (Please do not confuse the ties as tails.Garish.Yes.Tail.No) Do they speak any human unknown language? Or do they live in Utopian work conditions?

Well, let me add an emphatic “NO” to all the above.Oh yes, We are oh-a-little-sauve-desi-sahibs-and-madams,Oh yes a little preposterous,Oh yes dreams American dreams and yes we would love to work a little less too. This doesn’t make us weird. Do they?

I have been working in IT industry for sometime now; giving me the right to defend any allegation against the industry. I agree we are not doing any ground breaking stuff here in office; well most of us are not. Most of us do some technical or managerial stuff, bitch about HR policies in between coffees and cigarettes and indulge in a keep-it-cool attitude towards work in general. You cannot complain, after all we are engineers. Preparation equates to last minute rushes for us.

Having said that, please note that there are many of us who slog most part of the day just to get the websites up and running (We do more than that. You might not understand even if I start to explain. What the heck,sometimes even we don’t.). You ask any software personnel if they have worked for 24 hours without a break. They would blink.
I prefer to call it the “The blink of incredulity.” “How dare you ask me if I have done night outs? Ask me how many times!” So much for Utopian work environment. Yes we have the best tea/coffee vending machines, the best infrastructures and the cleanest of restrooms. We probably don’t deserve all that but we are thankful we have a job. A salary good enough to pay our bills and save for a bike, may be a car. The industry after all gave the middle class Indian the hope to dream beyond the borders. The dream of seeing snow topped Alps are no longer in vain. May be someday, even if I have-not seen Himalayas I might see the Alps.

And as a woman, IT industry has given me the power of identity. Anywhere I go I can work. There will be an IT company wherever I go. I can work. I don’t have to stop working because I got married or was on a maternity break. Most companies provide 3 months paid leave, 3 months unpaid leave, flexible working conditions and a team willing to back you up during your pregnancy and post delivery. Maternity is a privilege and responsibility, and IT industry whole heartedly understands this. (We’ll even do baby showers if you let us!)

And somewhere in between I hear people are blacklisting IT as a career for their prospective brides. Ouch! Ouch! That hurt. So it means that if you are unmarried girl working in IT sector you are bound to be selfish, self centered, unable to make adjustments, incorrigible and money minded. I didn’t say this. And I have demanded a personal audience with “the somebody” who had the nerve to tell this to my in laws.
(As usual my slap-a-nasty-retort section of the brain was also dumbfounded and was unable to respond even when my first language is “Sarcasm (fluent)”.It created smog in my brain which obscured rest of the conversation.)
We are not perfect, but we do know life does not end with marriage.Period.If you think we are anything more than being pragmatic, please do the much needed reality check.

People have hyped up the behavioral irregularities in IT industry. Every time I walk into a bank I don’t expect myself to be treated as a princess. There are times when you are not treated well, there are times you meet doctors who are annoying. Then we know, all bankers and all doctors are not rude. Then why do this to IT industry? Calling us money minded, rude, self-centered and what not? (I’ve mentioned this before in the blog. So What? People have told this to me more than that. Sue me!) .I’ve said this before, some of us might be, but definitely all of us are not.

I’m not trying to establish that IT folks are the best in the world. I am just trying to clarify the fact that we are also normal people. We live in a virtual world. Now days in the “cloud” (Sorry that was an IT joke.).We love the chai and samosa like you do. In between those American dreams are yearnings for a simple curd rice and prawn pickles. We are nothing but a group of people who wanted our dreams to come true. Do not sledge us. We are just living our dream.


  1. Ahh she is the "IT" girl ; good to know more about you. And whoever thinks IT professionals are self-centered, money-minded and rude(??) is a sod meant to be ignored!

  2. That was such an angry/anguished post. Loved both the emotions. Go girl! You have every right to dream and achieve as much as any man. And just ignore those who try to think or say otherwise.

  3. Although am still in the process of becoming an "IT" girl (still studying) I understand exactly what you mean! A very true post!

  4. Loved this one. Though your post may sound like an angry post, I enjoyed the subtle humor, like this one, 'We’ll even do baby showers if you let us!'

    being a IT man myself, I'm aware of what other think about us. Your post is a good answer.

  5. Can see the emotions pouring out in this one - and for good reason too. But you know what? The typecasting os rampant in all fields... take mine for instance .. "She is a HOTELIER?" .. is an aghast comment I have heard a zillion times (as though Hotels were some dirty, foul word to even speak out) .... needless to say, the implications are many.

    And I have realized that 90 percent of elderly population (read that as in-law material) and a whopping 60 percent of youth (read that as the male marriage material) prefer 'safe' jobs for women - teachers, lecturers, or even better - govt. banks!! (how do I know the stats? .... I don't.. its just safe judgement)... Lovely, compelling post!

  6. @Purba:Yes like Superman,"IT GIRL"..Sometimes it feels better to vent out.What better option than blog..
    @Zephyr:Thanks for the support.The problem is I have to react to such non sense and ask people not to generalize.
    @psychopnuema:Ha,a fresher.It's a wonderful world where Google is God..

  7. @Joshi:Thank you for the comment on humour..My dad would be proud of me..:D..It's saddening but yes this is true..There are loads of people out there blacklisting brides in the industry.I had to do this for them.
    @Meena:Chill out."Kuch to log kahenge".Vent it out.Snap at the people who dare sledge your work and then give them your most innocent smile.

  8. i dont knw wot let u write this post bt most of my friends do complain abt IT jobs,less pay hikes being the most common 1,nywaz its gud to see that u r happy beaing 1 n hope u achieve wotevr u dream to achieve over dere..ATB

  9. @Vineet:It's not about pay,hikes or job satisfaction.If you look at that,I'm sure even Obama hates his job.I couldn't stand the fact that people outside the industry are generalizing the IT folks.
    Thanks for the wishes Vineet,someday my dreams will come true..Till then it's rant on...

  10. One gets used to the stereotyping. All I do is smirk: they are so way off base, we use their ridiculous misconceptions as joke fodder during coffee breaks. :)

    For eg: the fact, as felt by taxi and auto wallahs in the county, that we are rich! Ha, whatay hilarity, yit yis!

  11. @Rindo:Hahaha.hoohoohoo.I know,the way they charge us.sometime its my whole months savings..
    Hey,Having a good trip right..Kinda envy you for it..

  12. You have painted a nice story - yours, mine and several million out there :)

  13. @Rindo:Totally Agree.Sometimes they dared ask me my months savings as the charge...Phew..
    @Vyankatesh:Thank you..

  14. Just Superb !

    Being from IT industry myself, it was nice to read this post. And what I liked more is you have brought different perspective of IT altogether in front. Nice read :)

  15. @Prasad: Thank you.Someone has to talk for us. :-)