The highlight of this week happened neither at home nor on the road, rather it happened within my office. For the past couple of months my team has known we were getting kicked out of our office and moved into a different building on the Schenectady campus. It was not so much that we were being kicked out, rather we were being pulled in by a part of the organization we had been thrown together with during GE’s latest corporate restructuring. The solar team has been a part of “Current, powered by GE” for about six months now, along with our Energy Storage and LED Lighting businesses. But I digress. Current’s (powered by GE, as I am legally obligated to say) headquarters is now in Boston, which is interesting because most of the management for Current (powered by GE) is actually located elsewhere; Cleveland for Lighting and Schenectady for Solar and Energy Storage. All this to say, we got forced out of our nice new office building and into the same building as the Energy Storage, which while very new, still lacks some of the… ahem… amenities of our previous residence.
We are on the first floor of our new office building; however, it is telling that everyone else in the office refers to the first floor as “the dungeon.” In an attempt to be very Google-esque we have migrated from a typical cubicle structure that offered some form of privacy (in the sense that the walls came up further than just above your waist) to a significantly more open floor plan. All in all this might not be such a bad thing except for the fact that you now have five guys, one of whom is a Filippo, and the other four who share certain Filippo characteristics, namely that we get really loud when talking on the phone (I mean this in the kindest sense, but there must be a subconscious belief that rests in all of us that believes the more physically distant we are from the person on the other end of the phone the louder we must become in order to make ourselves heard), who now sit in one concentrated area. I swear, it is going to start sounding like the floor of the New York Stock Exchange once we all get engaged in various conference calls.
The walls of our cubicles terminate at about chest height, however, the top two feet of each wall is glass; combine that with the fact that the layout has four of us facing each other (imagine a large square subdivided in to four smaller squares with each person facing the interior corner) makes for what are going to be some very awkward days. How is a person supposed to pick their nose in private if their coworker is staring right at them through their cubicle window? Several people have mentioned to me how quiet and peaceful the current residents of the building 66 dungeon are… well, they are in for a rude awakening, my boss has already made no fewer than three separate references to equipping us with Nerf guns.
It is not all bad though, I figured out how to crack open the glass between the cubicles and lodge pictures and signs in between them. Currently one of my cubicle mates is greeted by the picture above every morning, while the other is forced to stare at a sign that says “In case of emergency, break glass for Project Management response.”
Anyway, all of that to say that we spent Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of this week packing up our stuff, moving it over to the other office, and unpacking all of our stuff. One of the funniest parts about it was when the porters showed up Wednesday morning to start helping us move boxes over. Theoretically we should have spent the past few days slowly boxing up the stuff that we did not immediately need, the porters then showed up and moved all of those boxes over. The two buildings are about 200′ apart (door to door that is), our industrious porters were wheeling dollies of boxes down the elevators and out of the doors of one office where they proceeded to load up two trucks. Then they drove those two trucks the 200’ to the door of the new office where they proceeded to unload the trucks and bring the boxes in… At some point the decision was made that a truck was the most efficient method of transporting boxes across approximately 200’ of asphalt; I’m not saying the decision was made by the guys on the ground, but someone, somewhere made that call.