Have you ever inherited something at work and it turns into a complete disaster?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by glocke12, Mar 27, 2013.

  1. glocke12 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2008
    Going through this now...more of a vent than anything...I guess.

    I work in pharma. More specifically in an enzymology lab, where my job consists of running screening assays and also running mechanistic assays to investigate the behavior of enzyme/inhibitor interactions.

    6 months ago my company had some layoffs, and I inherited a project that had been around for years from someone that got laid off.

    Too make a long story short, eventually I started having problems with one of the assays that are run...Gist of it is, the original assay designer did not do their due diligence when designing the assay years ago. Its made the past two months a real *****torm for me and others....
  2. b-rad g macrumors 6502a

    b-rad g

    Jun 29, 2010

    My group at work is going through this now as well. We design transmission lines at an electrical utility and one of our "new" engineers had no idea what he was doing even though he's been here for 4 years and has been through all of the training and even has his PE.

    Well, he quit about 2 weeks before we had to have our construction package (drawings) to Construction Management and we are having to basically re-design the entire line and get permits that he had not applied for. It is taking about 5 of us to fix what he did/didn't do just to meet the deadline.
  3. Tomorrow macrumors 604


    Mar 2, 2008
    Always a day away
    My experience in the workplace is that there's usually little to no need to take a GOOD project and pass it on to someone else. Whenever I've inherited something, it was either already a clusterfork or doomed to become one.
  4. Plutonius macrumors 604


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire, USA
    If you think a project you inherit is a "good project", it just means that don't know enough about it yet to realize how bad it really is :D.
  5. smithrh macrumors 68020


    Feb 28, 2009
    Man oh man does that ring some bells with me...

    Sadly, the worse engineer I ever worked with was a PE. Much like what you wrote, this guy was a disaster, and he quit right before deadlines started to hit.

    His work was basically terrible, I suspect he knew it, and worked right up until the time when he became accountable for, you know, real stuff and not happy talk.
  6. ejb190 macrumors 65816


    I've had it go both ways.

    At my previous job they wanted me to keep doing a project that two guys did before me. It was being "supported" by a government agency - which means I do all the work and they take all the credit. I dumped that one in a hurry.

    At my current job, my supervisor left so we scrambled to spread everything he did among those of us who are left. Well, I took a project he going through the motions on and really made it into something useful. Sometimes it's not as much a bad project as someone not having the vision for what it could be.
  7. McGiord macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2003
    Dark Castle
    Amid chaos always opportunities are there.
    Try to leverage them, be very clear to your boss and others about what needs to be done to make it work, and be ready to ask for something in compensation after you demonstrate you deserve it for your extra effort and great results.
    Good luck, patience and hard work.
  8. droidbook macrumors member

    Feb 19, 2013
    Yes! I hate inheriting old documents/files from other or previous designers cause Im sitting here feeling like a brain surgeon trying to figure out wth is going on with this. Worst feeling ever trying to figure out why there is 20 plus text boxes on one simple page design. The I cant find images lol and nobody know where the images are. I end up recreating the file.
  9. balamw Moderator


    Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2005
    New England
    is inheriting someone else's files, code etc... only to stare at a chunk for a long time wondering "why the hell did they do it this way" only to realize it was originally your input. ;)

  10. JBazz macrumors 6502

    Apr 14, 2006
    I work for a bankrupt company that is going through reorganization, with all the stress and pains that it brings. Which in itself is almost more than I can handle. But there are people who come into work just to cause problems. I hate picking up after them.

    I mean it is one thing to deal with the normal everyday problems that occur. But to have to deal with an intentional mess? It is almost more than I can handle. I want to tell them to grow up but the minute I do, I will be accused of harassing them. My company is so dysfunctional.
  11. samiwas macrumors 68000

    Aug 26, 2006
    Atlanta, GA
    My world isn't so much inheriting terrible jobs, as most jobs in my business are just a few days long. What irks me is being an assistant to someone who is just terrible at designing the electrical installs for productions. I also frequently design them, so I know what it takes and how to do it efficiently. So when I see someone who does things in ways that just make things so terribly inefficient, it drives me crazy.

    It drives me even more crazy when they seem to be "well known" or "big in the business", making a stupid amount of money, while sucking at their job.
  12. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    I've had that.

    My latest job I inherited a project that was so convoluting and confusion I had no way to untangle that mess (due to time more than anything).

    Basically it was so far out of my job description that eventually the people I was supposed to help got sick of waiting on me and went elsewhere and found who should have been helping them in the first place so I *think* I am off the hook.

    Basically they needed to contact the elusive web design team not IT since they needed huge amounts of data transformed into webpages. I know nothing about web so I was a dead end.

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