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It’s Good to Eat Alone Expand / Collapse
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Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 6:53 AM
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Half and half. I think it is very important to build and maintain those relationships at work through a lunch now and then, and it is also important to use that time to do that technical reading you can only get to during work hours, while it doesn't impose on actual work, or personal time at home.

I like the calculation of how much 20 minutes twice a week adds up to. I'm finding myself consistently stretched more thinly every year, and it's nice to hear how much a few minutes now and then can accomplish over the course of a year. Going to have to keep that perspective in mind. Thanks!
Post #1153483
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 7:27 AM
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I prefer to eat alone at my desk, but this luxury has been taken away since other people think that I am not "part of them". "Communication skills" as DBA is so..."important".
Post #1153510
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 7:43 AM


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Gosh, so many loners in the software/DBA world... no wonder some people get the idea we are nerds lol.

I do enjoy some time alone for contemplation but rarely at lunch. Going to lunch with other people from your place of work is valuable in terms of building relationships on a broader level than you just in a meeting or over by the water cooler.

It is also important to go to lunch with people from other departments than just the guy in the cube next to you. By doing this you broaden your base, develop allies you may need later on and break up your brain focus for a while which can give new insights. You may end up developing some great new friendships as well.

I think the tendency for techies to be loners is not a good trend overall. It doesn't tend to enhance your networking base which can be very important to getting a new job or maybe just keeping an old one.








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Post #1153533
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 8:06 AM
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I tend to eat "alone", but this is because I'm usually talking to the wife, taking a power nap, reading, or otherwise distracting myself from work. I typically have a lot of high pressure items on my plate and need the time for my brain to sort out and come up with solutions... and the main way is to distract my conscious mind and let my brain work uninterrupted. Yes, it's fun to take lunch with others, but often I just need a break from everyone and everything.
Post #1153552
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 8:34 AM
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We eat as team in the cafeteria - it is the best way to keep in touch with the grapevine and also meet other people. If there is a personal issue or a serious work issue we eat at the desk and that is totaly fine. I have learnt certain things the hard way...learning to read the grapevine and informal ties is one of them.It would be nice if one could just work at one's desk and go home..but normally people like that are termed 'loners' , people don't approach you easily, nobody knows who you are...not good at all.
Post #1153591
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 9:42 AM


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I used to go out and eat alone sometimes, go out and eat with colleagues some times, stay in and eat alone sometimes, stay in and eat with colleagues sometimes (that last would usually be round a table in the office, not in an canteen or works cafeteria). Relatively frequencies depended on circumstances (like where I was working, how many people there were in teh workplace, and so on).

I never did any technical reading a lunchtime. I don't mind working long hours when it's needed, I don't mind working or reading technical stuff after dinner or before breakfast, I don't even mind skipping lunch to get on with work on the rare occassions when it's necessary; but if I take a lunch break I want to forget things technical and relax; when I was lunching alone, I would read either fiction or a non-technical newspaper, or take a walk, or go lie on the grass in the sun, or go into a pub and play pub games (things like shoveha'penny, pitch penny, bar billiards, devil among the taylors and so on) with the locals. When I was lunching with colleagues, we would play games (traditional pub games or things like crib, dominoes, or word games or whatever) and/or talk: conversation would usually be gossip about friends/acquantances/colleagues/PHBs and other burdens/news/films/music - anything but hardcore technical shop (except at one place where we used to take multi-hour lunches; much of that lunch time was spent roughing out system structure diagrams, bits of maths, and odd code fragments on beermats and table napkins, but that still left time for non-technical relaxation during that long lunch break).


Tom
Post #1153665
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 9:44 AM
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I tend to eat on my own at my desk and browse the web or read a book (never seem to get time at home to read books anymore). The main reasons are to keep costs down and to have a shorter break - this lets me get home to the kids that much sooner.

While I love to network I do find that lunch breaks end up that much longer (and cost more) - it is all time that has to be made up. Given the choice of playing footie (or whatever ) after work with the kids or having a longer luch break at work it is an easy choice to make.

The biggest thing I miss is that years ago the Friday lunchtime drinks used to be a big thing - nowadays this is somewhat frowned upon.
Post #1153667
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 9:47 AM
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There are not enough lunches in the week to do all the things I like to do.
- Eat with co-workers
- Eat with ex-co-workers
- Eat with friends (non-work related)
- Eat with family
- Run errands
- Make personal phone calls
- Do crossword puzzles
- Exercise (an hour walk can do wonders)
- Get some extra work done
I haven’t tried the power nap yet, but that does sound appealing.
Post #1153671
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 10:13 AM


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I have lots of Indian coworkers, including my boss. They like to start after 10 AM and have their lunch between 2 and 3 PM. That is too late for me.

With this schedule they like to have noon meetings. I often end up eating my lunch during a meeting.
Post #1153702
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2011 10:21 AM
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As much as I can, I try not to eat at my desk.
The main problem is that people see you online and don't kow you are working... or even the ones in the same office don't respect that it's your lunch hour.
So I long ago decided to avoid eating at my desk, unless I'm actually working (sadly, it happens quite often)

I think I have a healthy mix of eating with coworkers, so I can forge alliances. Eating with ex-coworkers, so I can keep up with what they are doing and see that the grass isn't always greener across the fence. And eating alone, either because I brought my lunch or because I just went to the sub shop.

When I eat alone I use it as a quiet time. Time to relax, clear my mind, read something relaxing...

On my old job I used to go for power walks when the weather wasn't so hot... it really helped with the relaxation.
Post #1153713
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