Team Bondi: apparently, working weekends is “inevitable”

In yet another Team-Bondi-is-great-and-I-<3-the-Crunch letter, Dave Hieronymous manages to come across as a corporate apologist, or simply delusional. Heard of the 5-days-a-week working week? Well ... reading Dave’s open letter … I guess everyone else on the planet is just … a slacker? … not trying hard enough?

“Recognising that working on the weekend was inevitable”

Your project took 7 years.

SEVEN YEARS.

For a project that most industry professionals I’ve spoken to agree could/should have been done in 2-3 years.

And working weekends was “inevitable”?

Bullshit.

“I never (and in my experience, neither did any of the other managers) expected anything from my team that I didn’t expect of myself. The management team at Team Bondi was not ensconced in an Ivory Tower working normal hours while everyone else crunched. Brendan himself worked very long hours and few of us here in the studio are aware of how grueling the DA and motion capture shoot in LA was.”

So … do you believ that if you’re a sado-masochistic idiot who has no personal or social life and hates every living thing on the planet, including yourself … it’s no longer “abuse” if you force other people to live the same way?

I’ve already called Brendan out on this. So, for Dave, let’s recap: for the managers to work extra hours, when they’re sitting on vast amounts of equity and/or typically much larger salary packages (a 2x multiple – or more – is common), is one thing.

For them to tell everyone else – who is being rewarded very little by comparison – is another thing entirely.

Also, Brendan chooses what hours to work. His employees get told. “Agency” is a pretty huge thing in human psychology, and is a big part of that thing we call “Freedom”. You cannot simply ignore it.

Team Bondi: even their staunchest defenders keep damning it. If they offer you a job, I advise you: Run, don’t walk, in the opposite direction.

5 thoughts on “Team Bondi: apparently, working weekends is “inevitable”

  1. Dave Toulouse

    Was reading recently that here in Montreal the game industry was struggling to find qualified employees. This kind of stuff sure doesn’t help to make the industry appealing.

    Surely there are some studios handling things a bit better but they remain in the shadow of this kind of drama.

  2. UnSub

    What struck me was the conflicting issues of the Lead Gameplay Programmer apparently knowing that people who worked weekends / overtime would get compensation, but not being sure if anyone on his team worked excessive hours.

    Also, as he says this was his first job out of uni. In 5 years time into a new job he may look back and say, “Wow, I really had it good at Bondi” or “Wow, they really took advantage of people”.

  3. Andrew Crystall

    Dave – Oh, I’ll have to check out the companies there then.

    Honestly, my approach if a company demanded this stuff would to be ignore it and go home on time. It *has* been, actually. Oh, I’ve worked a couple of bank holidays when they were massively apologetic and asked a few months in advance, but otherwise…

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