Ryan Freitas on Collaboration
It's interesting to listen to him talk about his fast-paced working environment and the tools they use to keep track of everyone on the team. Everyone seems to live and breathe their work. Not only do people follow each other's project statuses, but also their reading (news/blog), locations, thoughts (blogs) -- everything. The company encourages this full disclosure of everything you're doing, so you can find others in the organization with whom you can collaborate.
It sounds like it could be really stressful disclosing your every move like this, but I get the feeling that personal and work all blends together here. Their organization seems to recognize the value of all the learning and work inside and outside of official projects. What I usually regard as "screw-off" time would not be questioned in such an environment and may be encouraged or at least accepted.
I don't get the feeling that I'm in an environment like that, and I've completely fallen into the corporate mindset of looking busy and trying not to acquire too much more mundane work, so I'm left with a few moments to look at the more interesting projects, work-related or not. No one wants to know that I've learned all about EJB3 or whatever in the past couple weeks, until the time comes 2 years from now when we may actually want to use that technology. Of course, since I'm not disclosing, on one here would know to ask me about it.