The cornerstones of the Austrian IT work mentality. What is common with us and what is the difference?

This article prompted me to write one discussion that arose between me and my office colleague. By the way, we are both SAP consultants and work for a large Austrian company. Prior to this conversation, I received a development project that I worked on for quite some time. Naturally, various questions arose that I tried to clarify with more experienced colleagues, and sometimes, as an experienced consultant myself, I made decisions. But here is the first “inconsistency” of our and their work style. In Austria, a collective discussion of resolving any issues and the so-called “ shared responsibility ” has been adopted . What this means, I will explain further.

This same colleague of mine explained to me that teamwork is much more encouraged than individual, especially within the IT department. Therefore, it is necessary to constantly communicate about the progress of work, decisions made, problems and issues that arise during the work within the team. Since simply "one head is good, and two is better." It should be noted that we worked according to the Scrum methodology, and communications took place daily, but this was not enough.

So, the first conclusion.

You cannot take on a large chunk of work, assume that you alone are responsible for it, and provide results only upon completion. Naively assuming that you will be praised and promoted for it. In Austria, you need to constantly talk about what you are doing and embellish, to sell your work a little constantly, in order to increase its significance.

By the way, the exact same case occurred in the neighboring IT department, where my colleague from Ukraine, consultant level I or II worked. She took on a fairly large amount of work, which was not successfully completed by a colleague from France Senior level before. She decided that she could “prove” herself and complete this piece on her own, without outside help. This approach is practically prohibited in Austria.

Based on the results of these events, our Austrian colleagues decided that it was such a “Russian style” of work, “take the work on yourself and act independently.” And here I completely agree with them, individual consulting is very much encouraged in Russian consulting companies, universities and schools. We always appreciate for individual work. In Austria, group work makes up a large part of university studies. For me, at first it was even a problem, it is difficult for me to think collectively. It is not clear who is responsible for the result? And in a team, responsibility spreads.

And we turn to the second feature of the Austrian working mentality - “ shared responsibility". This is such a responsibility, which is continuously smoothly removed and the performers try to avoid responsibility as much as possible.

Therefore, “team work” just corresponds to this approach. No one will ever raise the question - who did this if there was a failure in a working system. They will just start to quickly restore everything. The one who is to blame and knows for himself, so either he will be the first to call to repair the system, or indicate the reason. Most often, they just say that a problem has arisen. But there’s no hint of who could do this. This happens to everyone, with the exception of my colleague and the Slavic “brotherly” country, who, out of habit, asks who this rascal is and has caused so many problems.

So, the second conclusion.

Never poke at the guilty, and do not look for him. Just ask for advice on how to fix the situation. The first one to answer is the author of this error.

A rather important point in Austrian business communication is the phrase "all people meet twice." This means that, in principle, when working in an Austrian team or company, you must try to help everyone, of course, if you have time and resources for this. If not, indicate when you can tackle a colleague's problem, see the code together, or think about the error. The principle is that helping is generally accepted in the work team and there are no “own” and “alien” tasks in it. And the most important thing is that the next time maybe you will have to turn to a colleague for help, and as they say “meet him a second time” and then he will not be able to refuse you :). This principle also works in any private part of your life.

And finally. Whoever complained first is right.

In Austria, starting from school, they encourage “knocking” and prohibit personal clarification of relations between students. Thus, if your child had a fight with a neighboring boy, for example, from Turkey. Then your son should first run to the teacher and say that they offended him (it does not matter who first raised his fists or said something superfluous). There is only one law - the first one is right.

This law applies to professional relations. Do not think that you will be able to personally speak with a colleague and resolve any differences. After a conversation, he will definitely go and complain to the boss. Be on the alert and go first if something happens. The same applies to relations between spouses, the law will always be on your side if you are the first (well, or the first;) to file a lawsuit or in special bodies to help spouses.

This law gives rise to the fact that everyone is pretty nice with you, and good behavior has long been in the blood. Since you have the right to complain for every wrong word at any time.

In addition, once a year there are so-called Performance Interviews in large companies, where they will tell you what your colleagues think about you. Yes, exactly so, your colleagues will be interviewed about how you work and how you develop relations with them. Therefore, remember that any incorrect phrase may work against you. Based on this survey, your boss, especially if there is someone else in the hierarchical step between you and him, will form an opinion about you. Therefore, be extremely kind and speak constantly in the subjunctive mood with colleagues, direct and clearly understood phrases. And nothing more.

On this interesting note, I aim to finish this article. In general, not everything is so sad, and it happens in 10% of cases, so it's good to just have a general idea of ​​what you can expect. In 90% of cases, everything is really good, and you and your children find many interesting friends among colleagues and subordinates! Because sometimes people really genuinely smile at you!

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