TL;DR: One of my coworkers is a genius engineer and doesn't get as much recognition as he deserves, whereas another extremely mediocre engineer on the team gets praised for his crappy applications.

We have one engineer on our team (let's call him Hank) who started with me at the company when we were interns, and man is he a freaking genius. I swear, you could give this guy any language/library/framework, and he'll be fluent in it in less than a week. He's singlehandedly written two of our most complex applications by himself, and has a great sense of UX as well. All of his apps look fantastic.

The problem is, I feel like he doesn't get anywhere near as much recognition as he should. I try to talk him up to our manager, and our manager knows that Hank is smart, but he also overlooks him for promotions and praise because he's a little spacey (he's got quite the case of ADD) and doesn't speak up very often. He's got trouble focusing sometimes, but when he's in the zone, he can write an exponentially better and more complex application in 2 days than some of our other engineers can do in 4 months.

For example, we have another engineer on our team (let's call him Phil,) and the entire team has their heads so far up Phil's butt that I'm surprised they haven't suffocated yet. Don't get me wrong, he's a smart guy. He's great with the more basic aspects of our job, but when it comes to writing an application, he has no idea what he's doing, and he takes months to write something that should have taken him days. Then when he finally releases it, it's riddled with bugs. But everybody praises and bows down to him for it. "Oh Phil, this app is amazing. You're a genius, you deserve to be a Lead." Then we have Hank sitting quietly at his desk, banging out his 3rd big application of the month, and people say "Eh, nobody's going to use those apps anyway. He's wasting time." And I'm standing there thinking, "You asshats, we already have a solution for the app that Phil wrote, and the entire company is already using it. It's exponentially better, why did you let him waste time writing this when there's already an existing solution?!"

Oh well, I hope Hank gets some recognition soon. He certainly deserves it.

  • 61
    Here's to Hank. 🍻
  • 27
    ++ for hank, he doesn't get the recognition he deserves
  • 12
  • 12
    You tell him now, he loved by people in here.
  • 6
    @filo I tell my manager good stuff about him all the time. He knows he's smart, but he's so out-of-touch with what we actually do that he doesn't understand who's truly a good engineer and who just has the surface appearance of being a good engineer (like Phil)
  • 7
    Communication is key
  • 10
  • 6
    Maybe it's time to change job? IMO if he implements great things and your company doesn't appreciate it, so maybe they doesn't need that great things anyway
  • 6
    Send Hank to a self-promo training of some kind. He needs to learn how to hack office politics in addition to code. #teamHank
  • 4
    Now i want a #teamhank-mug ^^"
  • 1
    @YouAreAPIRate that wouldn't be the first time that we've put his face on a piece of merchandise 😂
  • 7
    ADD is a burden and a gift.

    With ADD you can see things from a different angle and come to conclusions and associations that non ADD people wouldn't see.

    Which is great but if your're an introvert and a day dreamer it is incompatible with society.
  • 8
    Sadly, it's a huge problem in our business (and many others) that those who possess natural confidence, charisma and great social skills just do better career-wise than those who are the most technically skilled.
  • 5
    @pleuph I wouldn't even say that Phil possesses any special level or confidence/charisma/social skills. He's a relatively quiet person. And don't get me wrong, it's not like he's asking for all this attention from people. Just for some reason, it seems like he could pop a squat on his desk and take a big ole' dump and people would bow down to him and high-five him for his "amazing work"
  • 2
    @ElbowDeepInElmo Wow. That is weird.
  • 4
    Should put your elbow deep in Phil 😂
  • 0
    Good communication skills are essential, plus self-esteem. If Hank gets better at that he might get a raise or even move to a better position in a better company.
  • 0
    Check out my newest rant for an update on this 😉
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