How to reprogram an ex-IBMer?

Way way back, a lot longer than I want to remember, I had a job interview at IBM. Actually in total I had four! After the third one they sent me off for a medical. When a friend asked me what the medical checked for, I replied:

“To see if I am IBM compatible!”

(it was funnier at the time).

Well after twenty three marvellous years with IBM, I am now happily working for a brand new employer (Actifio), alongside some of the smartest and most enthusiastic people I have ever known. And yet the force of habit is still with me.
When signing in a visitors register I still have to stop and think… it’s not IBM anymore.
When introducing myself and my employer, I still sometimes slip… and Big Blues name comes out.

I wonder how long it takes to truly re-program yourself?


About Anthony Vandewerdt

I am an IT Professional who lives and works in Melbourne Australia. This blog is totally my own work. It does not represent the views of any corporation. Constructive and useful comments are very very welcome.
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9 Responses to How to reprogram an ex-IBMer?

  1. Paul Rosham says:

    Takes about 3 months of practice to get your new company down pat, and start saying “them” instead of “us” about the new mob. Maybe longer for you with such a long stint in the one place – the rest of the world has had more chances to be in that situation.

  2. JAD says:

    Anthony – A physchologist friend of mine insists that if you repeat it for 23.5 seconds it will stick ! Seriously ! .. … Just watch what you try and remember as it can have some unexpected results.

  3. Rob says:

    Hey Anthony,

    IBM made me go through *seven* interviews (4 with IBM, 3 with Diligent which they had just acquired) but they skipped the medical on me ;-) I guess they should have, I never became a True Blue IBMer.. But I did escape to join the same great bunch of people at Actifio and I am glad to work with you!

    JAD, thanks for the tip. 23.5 seconds did it for me…

  4. Ever Onward, Hail to IBM….

    (those who know will get it!)

  5. Aj Verhoeff says:

    Blue blood always remains in your veins! Though the fact that you are working with Rob is speeding the clearing up a bit :-) Anyway, good luck with your new endeavour and please keep blogging

  6. huffy1977 says:

    Congrats on the new role. I’ve been hearing a lot about Actifio lately…. and your move has sparked my interest further :)

  7. DRB says:

    I was an IBMer for 19 years but then sold off to another company by Louis Gerstner and his sidekick Robert Savage. IBM offered me a 30% discount on an Aptiva PC as recognition of my 19 years work with IBM but they kept all of my part 4 superannuation. I long since left the new company, Bluegum Technology, which was a bad place to work. However, the good news is I am currently an electronic engineer designing leading edge medical equipment for use around the world. I learn there is life after IBM – a lot of it. Moreover, doing product design, embedded coding and electronic circuit design is far more interesting and challenging than what IBM could offer. In the early years, IBM was a good company to work with. But now IBM to me is a dead company, worthy of nothing.

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