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jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

TIL about "auticon" which apparently is the company that employs autistic people in IT at significantly below-market salaries in order to then sell their services as extraordinary IT consultants with unique cognitive strengths 🤮
Like, if your employees are so unique, they should be paid above market, not below.
And they market themselves as "helping", sounds more like exploiting the fact that some of these people have nowhere else to go.

job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

Still very bitter about that company (not "auticon", another one where I had interviewed recently).
It was supposed to be my ticket out of the meaningless products made with Node.js swamp. And the team wss great, really diverse, with a lot of people (and even some friends) from fedi, and with men a minorty.
They also were in a desperate need of CTO and were impressed by my CV (probably by 15 years of professional engineering experience and several years as an architect and a team lead) so much that they suggested I could take this role... okay, it's much more demanding and taxing and stressful than just creating stuff in Rust, but I could see myself doing that, for some new experience at least.

So the process dragged on for 1.5 months, but apparently they liked me very much on all the interviews, and they finally made me an offer.
To start as a senior software engineer with a salary 15% lower than a typical base salary for a middle software engineer in Berlin (and this company is based in Berlin). Gradually moving into a CTO role, for a typical middle software engineer base salary in Berlin. (And they don't have any annual bonuses or extended vacation, beyond the bare minimum; most companies have).
I mentioned my current salary on the first interview, told them that I absolutely wouldn't want to get less than that, and then they make me an offer to eventually maybe get 10% less than I'm getting now, for an extremely stressful (as they themselves say) and prone to overtimes role, as opposed to a relaxed software engineer role.
Apparently they are just a poor startup that cannot afford paying anywhere close to the market salaries.

And by that time I already had an offer from another company (another meaningless project in fucking Node.js), with base salary a third higher than what they offered as a start, _and_ annual bonus _and_ extra vacation, but I wanted to work at that diverse team on that interesting project so much that I was even willing to accept that huge pay cut and huge stress, and spent fucking THREE DAYS stalling on that other offer (in addition to the days I stalled on it while the process at the desired company dragged on) and trying to suggest to that company various ways to at least somewhat sweeten their offer.
Like, OK, your salaries are so unbelievably low (not just below market but not even resembling the market at all), I understand that you don't have money, maybe you could offer a four-day week instead? Especially since the other company has an option of moving to four-day week anytime, with 20% cut in salary (which I personally think is very wrong; it's not like people produce less stuff in four days), and even after that 20% cut their salary is still not less than what you're offering me, and that's for a relaxed job, not a stressful one. Their answer: no 🙃 we absolutely need CTO to be available at all time, and even if you only were an engineer (at an even lower salary, because we only offered you that much for the months in a software engineer role expecting you'll become a CTO), we could only consider four-day week in exchange for further 20% cut to already miserable salaries.
Maybe you could offer some more vacations? No 🙃
They didn't even seem to try to think of anything that would make their awful offer even a bit more palatable, didn't seem to have any interest in negotiations. As if the honor of working at their company should already be enough for everybody to take their offer. I cannot imagine how demotivating would it be for me to work there on these conditions, knowing how underpaid I am, knowing that it's not even about money but about the founders and top management not caring at all, and knowing that I chose this myself over other opportunities. Sounds like an express way to burnout (and I wouldn't even be able to search for other jobs while having this one, because it would leave me no time to do that).
So after all these days of unsuccessfully trying to get anything from them, anything at all, I accepted that other offer. Back to the swamp, doing meaningless stuff with Node.js that I hate.
I don't have any idea how they're going to find themselves a CTO they're so desperately looking for. I don't think any other candidate would put so much effort into making this work as I did. Most likely, immediately after hearing these numbers, anybody else would just laugh at them and told them to stop wasting their time.

I guess that there is a silver lining that I got another offer accepted it and won't have to deal with my current comany and hear about cryptocurrencies anymore, but still. It was such a great opportunity, and I was even willing to work for less, just not that much less, and not with such an attitude from them, and urgh.

But also, I have already posted about "auticon" in the previous post, and now I cannot shake the feeling that this company is somewhat similar. That they have disproportionaly large percentage of women and trans people among regular employees (top management and founders are all men) precisely because these groups are disadvantaged and marginalized in wider society, meaning that they can be exploited and underpaid, with senior engineers slaving overtime for what is now an entry-level salary, because many of them have nowhere else to go.
And with the company not offering these employees anything to even somehow make up for their supposed lack of money. You don't need money to move your entire engineering team to a four-day week (and admit that they're still severely underpaid but at least you tried to do _something_ to somehow compensate for that), you just need to have basic decency and acknowledge that your employers might have some self-esteem.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

I wish I could work with friends and nice people from fedi 😭 (also working with rust, and on a nice project that actually makes things a bit better, would definitely be a plus...)

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

People who work there: "this company is so trans friendly, the founders will only ever refer to you by your actual name, even though the employment contract and other paperwork has to be in your legal name because that's Germany". (as I understand, like half of their employees are trans)

Me, having had three rental contracts and two employment contracts (including payrolls) concluded in my actual name in Germany, with the last employer not even knowing my legal name (turns out you can just black out the dead name from your visa/eAT/ID and nobody will say a word as long as you also attach a dgti card), even though none of the five companies promotes itself as trans-friendly, and for both employers it was probably their first time dealing with a trans person: :blobcatthinking:

Pity that such an awesome team is at such a meh company with such a meh cofounders, and yet they think that something not quite reaching the basic decent minimum (and founders apparently not even caring enough to put any effort into learning whether they can reach that minimum even though half their employees are affected) is some especial friendliness, to balance company's shitty approach towards wages and worktime.
Or maybe it's just that I was extremely lucky. So far the only German companies refusing to use my actual name were government agencies, my bank and my health insurance company (oh, and doctors, because they're mostly assholes)

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde Here there's a thing that provides work for disabled people, and it basically seems to be the least valued kind of work that exists.
Because everyone must work to "earn a living".

re: jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@owl but in this specific case, the extra irony is that this company sells its services to customers as something much better than other companies do, because of these unique strengths, it's their main selling point.
So the company gets paid more for "unique strengths", and actual people who brought these "unique strengths" to the company get paid less 🤷‍♀️

re: jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde @owl it's pretty much the same grift perpetuated by every smooth-talking middleman from grain millers to Amazon...

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde that's how many disabled folks are being exploited under the guise of charity ☹

Sometimes I'm kinda glad that my disability is not really officially recognized…

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@lexi @IngaLovinde while not needing to do work for living would be optimal, until that we seriously need some disabled-led co-ops that employ disabled people.

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@Stoori @IngaLovinde unfortunately such things usually need quite an unpfront investment, and most disabled people are poor for the aforementioned reason…

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@lexi @IngaLovinde that's true. of course society could help with investments, as they are probably also currently putting some money in employing disabled people anyway, but the important point here would be disabled-led, that is, actually empowering the people and not just exploiting them.

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@lexi @Stoori @IngaLovinde

nearest we had here was Remploy (not really a co-op but part subsidised by government and more geared towards manufacturing industries), disabled workers made road signs, furniture and parts for vehicles but it got privatised in a rush towards "free markets" and lots of the factories were closed..

re: jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@Stoori @lexi (I googled for employee-owned IT companies in germany several days ago. Apparently there is one (1) of them in the entire country)

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

~ @IngaLovinde ðe 'con' is about right... .

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde oh, interesting. I applied for them about 2 years ago, but because of COVID and Kurzarbeit they didn't employ new people. I thought that they would pay a fair salary (like what's normal in the market)

re: jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@autinerd I also thought that, but according to the reviews their salaries are really bad

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde < i þink i've heard about þis and i þought it sounds neat but not if ,, þey're paid less ?? þan average?? like what?? it's really fucked up ⭐

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde i mean, there's "con" in their name

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde

yeah they actively admit that we get paid to do more for less.

jobs in neurotypical society, wtf 

@IngaLovinde ah, a new facet of capitalism and ablism to be sickened by.

job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde In my experience, that's just the average startup shittiness. It's pretty rare finding something different.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@jens I have worked at average startups both in Russia and in Germany, and had interviews at a lot of average startups in Germany.
Some of them had a bit below-market salaries.
None of them paid typical entry-level salaries to senior engineers, or lower than typical middle-level salaries (once you factor everything in) to CTOs. (The latter is my extrapolation from the fact that all of them offered typical senior-level salaries or maybe a bit below (maybe compensated by extended vacations somewhat) to senior engineers.)

job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde Mm, I suppose there wasn't really much other option- being on a low salary is fine if the locality is cheap, or it's a dream role in some way, but high stress and feeling set upon financially.. that's not a good combination at all.

Still - at least there's an income, and, no more jobhunting (beyond potentially keeping an eye out for something better sometime). Gods know, jobhunting is the worst possible full time occupation.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@porsupah It was a dream job in some way (although I clearly overestimated the company, so it was only a dream in terms of a team and of a project), so I was willing to settle on a lower salary, but not on ridiculously low without any attempt from the management to meet me halfway or anywhere at all in any aspect...

But yes, at least I don't have to do jobhunting anymore. Just really bitter that I didn't get to leave the swamp because the management at that company did not even attempt to sweeten that awful offer with anything, despite them being in an urgent need of finding someone to take this role.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde Mmm, that's definitely very disappointing. You gave them multiple options, and they remained steadfast with a distinctly mediocre offer. sigh

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@porsupah I wouldn't even say "mediocre" (I would have probably accepted it if it was only "mediocre", which shows how much I wanted to work there).
It was worse than mediocre. And then when I learned how "much" are their regular employees getting, I was just shocked.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde Gods. How do they continue? Do you know if employee churn is as high as would seem expected?

I suppose some outfits do enjoy trying to undercut salaries. I recall interviewing with one place that was offering what I'd call poor for a newcomer, let alone someone experienced. Still, I gave them a try, thinking we could maybe revisit money later on, once I'd demonstrated my value to them.

Interview went well, and got rejected for too high salary demand - they didn't even try offering the sub-par amount advertised.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@porsupah I'm not sure about churn 🤔

And at least this place you were interviewing with was honest upfront, and they didn't waste your time any further once they learned of your expectations.

job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde Sounds like you dodged a bullet with the other job, tbh, even if it was more the kind of work you wanted. Workplace culture matters, and none of that suggests good attitudes in management

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@ghost_bird but it's not only about this job, it's also about all the jobs after this one... it's really difficult to change profiles between jobs, and I won't have an opportunity to change my profile while working on one I ended up accepting, meaning that my next one will probably be in the same swamp :(

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde That sucks and I’m sorry. But still

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@ghost_bird and yes, even if they would budge in the end: by that time I became pretty disillusioned with the company itself and its management.
Regular employers, team leads, etc all seem to be very nice people, but probably it's that niceness that allows management to have these attitudes. Or at least it looks this way.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde I guess I’m just wary because one of the worst places I ever worked was a job I took because the manager who interviewed me was really nice

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@ghost_bird well, top managers and cofounders who interviewed me were also the ones I discussed my offer with, so I don't have any illusions regarding their niceness 🙃
While I still think that the regular employees who interviewed me are nice. But then I'm also friends with quite a few of their employees, and know quite a few more...

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde hmm.... What products are they working on?
Can it be "cloned" and done in a new 100%-remote-company?
Because I think we would find enough great workers here (me included) to start a better company, deliver excellence, treating workers with respect & just steal their customers..

I might need starting to work, too, soon. But anxieties etc. make it very hard to go anywhere in person - let alone move anywhere..

I think of companies in the structure of "well typed" or so. 100% remote Europe wide...

Main thing my plan is missing:
- a product
- people who sell that product

I can "just" do the whole programming and accounting (including the legal stuff like setting up contacts that lawyers just have to skim briefly)..

Could that be a solution? 😅

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@Me_but_lewd I'm not sure I understand, sorry!

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde Halt einfach ne remote-only konkurrenz aufbauen, die so einen scheiss nicht macht.

ich wäre dabei, aber hätte kein produkt oder vertriebler - nur ahnung von programmieren, buchhaltung, juristischem mist etc.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@Me_but_lewd I don't speak German! :)
Just could not understand your previous post clearly

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde dang .. i assumed becauso you talked about berlin ... sorry.

Translation:
just open up a competing remote-only company making the same product while treating the employees decently..

I would be up for it - i just don't know what to create or how to distribute.
I can do programming, accounting, some legal.

So maybe you have ideas on WHAT to build and how to distribute... :D

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@Me_but_lewd ah, I see! Distributing seems to be the hardest thing :( maybe it could start just as Blahaj Consulting @haskal

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde @haskal Distribution is EASY. But you need the right people with the right mindset for it.
It is just a complete other area of expertise than coding. There is only very little overlap here.

I worked at Jobware in Paderborn as programmer - and had some contact & knowledge what the distributers do. Customers (for job-ads jobware does as its main business) were also just other companies where they had to sell, sell, sell whatever new thing other parts of the company imagined..

I have no such people currently in my bubble .. otherwise i would have already started a b2b-company selling some software..

There are a few things i KNOW where good software is needed - but i don't know if that is a **lucrative** niche.

I.e. Accounting and Warehousing for small-to-medium businesses especially in the craft-market are desperate for a good solution.
Every existing product is either prohibitively expensive (think: SAP) or not tailored/tailorable to the needs of those businesses requiring manual workarounds or bookkeeping all the time.
Only danger i see is the eventual need for dozens of expensive certifications so that you can actually interact with things like ELSTER and other tax-institutens directly..

But hey .. maybe creating the n-th webdesign-startup will make us rich! .. Or do something with blockchain! In the cloud! With Self-Sovereign-Identities! .. :D

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde @haskal
additionally: prototypefund.de/en/ is currently open again until 9/30 - so we could even get funding for some months for any idea .. ;)

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@IngaLovinde sameee…

re: job search (-/+), long rant, exploitation 

@lis 🥺😭

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde I do not get why so many people believe this "you need to use your legal name in legal paper work"-bs.

The biggest reason why I was to lazy for changing the legal name until now was that (besides for some stuff related to banking) it was never necessary. I have a job contract, rent contract, health insurance, stuff with doctors all running under my choosen name. Most of them don't know my legal name is different.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@vonbirne how did you manage to do this with the health insurance? Mine (TK) was absolutely adamant that it can only be in my legal name (both on the phone and in the office, on several different occasions, to the point that they did not insure me at all until I filed the application in my legal name), and I heard that others are not really better.
And the doctors just refer to the name on health insurance card :(

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde tbh I filled in the online form with my choosen name when I swapt health insurance. There were issues with this though as they automaticaly compare this stuff with data from Finanzamt using the Steueridentifikationsnummer (if I remember corectly). The fix was that they changed my gender to male once so that the automated system was pleased, atm they write letters adressed at Herr ${female_first_name} ${last_name} :blobcatnotlike:

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde The data on my Krankenkassenkarte says my gender is divers if I am correct. Weird stuff.

I probably have to go there again so that they try to fix the letter stuff.

The people at the local branch offices are quite nice and they are allways realy embaressed with what their system is doing (you know, people in cologne have to be queerfriendly even if they arn't but I actually believe them)

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde the people working in the nationwide offices on the other hand are transmisogyn assholes. Like those people deciding on cost absorption stuff in trans matters. You might remember it took me close to a year and a court case to make my health insurance pay laser hair removal.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@vonbirne in my case, people at the local branch office at Nurnberg acted friendly and embarrassed but still insisted that I have to file my application in my legal name in order for them to consider it.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde The bigger difference here is probably Nürnberg (which is still in Bavaria) vs Cologne (which claims to be the queerfriendliest city in germany) and not so much between different health insurances.

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@vonbirne they made it sound like it was some global rules from the headquarters... and my original application was rejected (without them saying anything) by the main branch in Hamburg 🤷‍♀️

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde @vonbirne the Bahn BKK has a nice benefit in that it has direct contracts with some therapists which usually only accept private insurance/selfpayers so they can bill with them, but i know nothing about them beyond that. might be worth some research? but also you have to wait a year after joining a health insurer in order to switch to a new one, dunno if relevant to you

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde i've made the experience that companies defining themselves over being oh so inclusive are often more shit at actual allyship than regular "apolitical" neolibs

re: job search (-/+), long rant, trans-friendliness 

@IngaLovinde this brings up a really good point actually -- often you get treated better by those who don't really have any idea because *you* get to make the rules about being trans if you're bossy enough.
Whereas companies all self-congratulatory about trans employees you can be sure have legal/HR staff making sure every transphobic law/regulation is followed to the letter to protect their own asses, even when it's shit to you.

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