"Impossible deadline experience?"

When product owners promise delivery dates.

One day, I came back from a two weeks holiday, relaxed. I noticed a teammate missing. "Yes, he took the week off". Sure, why not.

We were working under a bastardized enterprisey version of Scrum (didn't we all at some point?). So we didn't just have a product owner, we had three and an additional "Head of PO". Because enterprises can't live without hierarchies or something. Barely an hour after I came into office, she entered the room and came straight to me. "Your coworker was almost done implementing feature X. You need to finish it immediately. No worries, though, coworker said the rest is a piece of cake".

It wasn't. There was *a lot* left to do, the JIRA task wasn't entirely clear, and the existing code for the feature was so-so (obviously WIP code). I estimated two weeks for the implementation, plus some time to clarify the requirements. When telling "Head of PO" she lost her shit. Screaming things like "this feature is due the end of this week" and "I signed this with my blood!". Well, I didn't, and I made it clear that I hadn't been consulted on this, thus I would not accept any blame in case we missed the deadline.

So I gave my best that week, getting pestered by "Head of PO" all the time. "Is it done yet?", "why does it take so long?" and "your coworker would've been done by now!". Yeah fuck you, too. Not only was I not relaxed any more, I was even more stressed than before my holiday! Thanks, you stupid bitch.

Well, her arbitrary deadline came and the feature wasn't ready. And what happened was... exactly nothing. The following week my coworker returned, who gave me an apologetic smile. "I told her the feature was nowhere finished. And even me, being familiar with the task, couldn't make it in time". We finished the feature together that week, and that was the end of it. So... "Head of PO" either didn't listen or lied to me. She then stressed me to the max right from the day I came back from my holiday. And in the end it didn't even matter.

Again, thanks you stupid bitch, for creating a toxic work environment. Should you ever read this, I'm happy I quit and I hope you miss every single deadline for the rest of your life. Screw you.

  • 3
    This reminds me of a situation I had several years ago. I was on holiday for one week. In the middle of the week, a Customer reported an "important" issue in a product where I am the only developer. Our team leader told my colleagues that this needs to be fixed immediately. My colleagues combined our boss that this can wait until next Monday when I will be back.
    The first thing I did was nothing for a month, and nobody cared.
  • 1
    "I would not accept any blame in case we missed the deadline."

    Well, you are wrong there bro. I know this from experience. She will go around amongst project managers shit talking you. Questioning your skills and motivations. Come the day of your "personal development discussion" and you will be told how difficult and un-co-operative you are.

    No point to argue back, since she has already labeled you as "difficult".

    If it's any consolidation, she's difficult to everyone else too. So everybody knows she's an assohole. You need to be friends with her managers and managers. Shit talk her.

    Office work it's pretty much like Game of Thrones.

    PlanB is to quit and work somewhere else. I did that.
  • 1
    Similar experience with OP, I had one guy who never discuss about spec and always set random deadline date then push you around like cow. Fuck these people.
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    @thatDude true, that wording was very confrontational. I still believe in "Bad planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part".

    Also, they won't learn if their shit never flies back in their face. After all, from a management perspective, if you keep setting tighter and tighter deadlines and your devs keep meeting them, why would you change anything?

    In her case all hope was lost, though: While everyone knew she was the difficult one (you're got it 100% there!), she was untouchable because general management culture was "dog does not eat dog". I did quit later. Fuck office politics and licking boots.
  • 0
    > Come the day of your "personal development discussion" and you will be told how difficult and un-co-operative you are.

    Oddly enough, I got glowing performance reviews. Some managers didn't like me at all and made things difficult for me, but on paper I was one of the best employees ever. I don't get it. Whatever. 🤷‍♂️
  • 0
    We had those yearly development discussions where your co-workers gave feedback on you and so on. My asshole ex-boss gave me bad ratings for my work and my personality. Well, I though ok, I will give back the same shit on her performance review. But guess what? Never happened. She somehow managed to wiggle so that none of us "bad guys" in her "team" was asked for feedback. She hand picked those who got to comment her. Mostly some young ass-lickers who think think that by praising the glorious leader they would also be praised.

    One career booster might also that...we think she was having sex with the manager of the managers. She did kinda career rocket in the company when she joined - without any previous experience. I think the tactic was to sqeeze into new position and try to switch to another one before you needed to take any responsibility.
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    If you missed the "deadline" and noone died, it was not a deadline, kill the PO to resolve the issue.
  • 0
    @ItsNotMyFault A bit off topic but i am inspired by your name to change mine to Itworksonmymachine xD.
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