A View From Egnyte Engineering
Rituals and Multi-Colored BikesBy Krishna SankarEvery startup has a ritual -- something all folks participate in which is usually a periodic activity and if it involves sports, no one is good at it. This is what makes it interesting. Kris (our fearless Ops leader - you will meet him in a few blogs) mentioned that at Yahoo, the folks would go to McDonald's for breakfast, and people would come to work early just for the breakfast!But which came first, startups or rituals? While we have to leave that question aside, we can safely say that it is the ritual that makes a startup interesting and is a source of lasting camaraderie among the folks.Of course, at Egnyte we also have a ritual - Office Pong! We do not have a snazzy fancy jazzy table, but we accidentally stumbled into one when we remodeled our office from cubes to a big bull pen. Somebody noticed that four tables across almost looked liked a Ping-Pong table and the rest, as they say, is history.First, here is a picture of our makeshift Ping-Pong table - you be the judge! And a picture of us playing (while poor Manish is trying to work and dodge some of the shots).
Second, if you are in Mountain View for the day, come on over and sign up for the impending Office Pong tournament.
Third, we do have some rules! Kyle, our unofficial Rules Master has a set of evolving rules. For example, double bounces on the net (which is actually a wood partition) is a re-serve. One cannot lose on the first serve. After reaching 10 points the losing team continues to serve until they lose or catch up to the winning team. We are still discovering Kyle's depth of Office Pong rules and I have a feeling we haven't reached the bottom yet! We are also accumulating practical wisdom. For example, Kris learned never to buy Ping-Pong balls from a grocery store. The balls he got were loaded and they simply wouldn't bounce. We suspect the balls were manufactured in the same plant where they make loaded dice for crooks in Vegas. :)
We are all preparing for the Office Pong tournament. Here is Charles teaching Yolanda a few tricks. Yolanda claims that she has never played Ping-Pong before, but she is winning hands down. Rumor has it she is a force to reckon with.
Finally, the winner gets to ride on the Egnyte yellow-red-blue-green bike to Starbucks. The treat is on our CEO Vineet Jain, and if you like the bicycle you don't have to return it. There are more bikes where this one came from. We can't mention the source, you just have to 'search' for it.
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