June 28, 2005
A post about work

I don't often post on my blog about work. Mainly because I know that people I work with read this site. I've decided that my gauge for decided what to post here should be 'would I mention this story at lunch with co-workers?'

Now some may disagree with this self-censorship, but this is my site and I'll do what I want.

That said, this post is about work.

For those that don't know, I work in television and help run the technical operations for several networks owned by Disney. Last year we were asked to help run the ABC Family channel by relocating the playback to Burbank.

This task is non-trivial.

Running a television network is HARD. Building duplicate capabilities and preparing all the content, understanding the workflow, modifying existing systems, and building a multi-million dollar facility is VERY HARD.

After months of effort, long hours, weekends, 3AM upgrades, arguements, endless meetings, countless phone calls, testing, rehearsal, and bajillions of emails, we went on the air yesterday.

Early Monday morning we toook over the operation of ABC Family and like a proud father, I'm still beaming.

I am so proud of my team and my co-workers. Pulling this off is a huge achievement and I just have to brag. Like any family, we fight sometimes at work. But in hindsight it's simply amazing to see what our team can do when we put our mind to it.

Here is part of the team celebrating the successful transition. Take a moment to look at all those individuals, each doing their part to achieve what noone could do on their own. Each person filling their role to make sure their part of the process works, allowing the next person down the chain to do theirs.

As technical people, we don't often get much of the glory that permeates television. But you won't find a harder working group, more committed to perfection than the team I'm proud to be a part of at Disney.

The week before, I was surprised by my boss with an improptu gathering. He presented me with my ten year plaque.

That's me at home with the plaque. Disney is an old school company with many traditions about celebrating long time employees. In addition, I was given my ten year tie tack. If a company tie tacks isn't old school, I don't know what is.

Hard to believe it was ten years ago that I sat on a loading dock in Singapore eating a peanut butter sandwich when I was offered an 'all expense paid trip to Burbank'. Ten years from the loading dock to the corner office.

My company takes many hits in the press and especially in cyberspace. Some deserved, most not. Those who know me in meatspace, know I don't always leap to the company's defense. I'm more content to work from the inside discussing the future and helping to open minds that are closed.

But working at Disney is something magical. For all our faults, who could ask for better company product. We try to entertain people.

If we didn't care about the people that watch our shows and films, wear Mickey, and visit the parks we wouldn't work hard. Disney people work hard. I see it everyday, and it makes me proud everyday, doing our part to entertain children of all ages.

So today I post about work, and I don't care who reads it.

Posted by michael at June 28, 2005 08:02 PM