Tony has a point, but then again not every company expects miracles with sub-par tools. Our company welcomes innovation and helps innovators get patents or market their project where this is appropriate.
What we don't tolerate is whingeing about an issue without coming up with an alternative. You don't have to code it and commit a 1.0 release; just a concept or napkin drawing will suffice. If we don't engage the company in the solution, we will at least allow you to work on fixing something that bugs you, partially on company time, partially on your own.
Depending on how much personal time was committed and how useful the end project is to the company, we will either:
1) Compensate you and your team for your effort, buying the project outright. We then bring the project into our own offerings or make a subsidiary out of it.
2) Help you through protecting the intellectual property issues with the company owning only the percentage of the project which was done during company time (historically 10-50%).
3) Lay you and your team off and help you spin off your own business to offer your product or service to the world, with our company usually being your first customer.
We have several expressions around here that sum up our culture.
"GOYA" (Acronym for "Get off your a$$")
"Tell me what will work instead of what won't."
"We are about solutions, not problems."
...and my personal favorite, the ten shortest words of greatest power:
"If it is to be, it is up to me."
My point is that corporate culture determines how effectively one is allowed or expected to solve issues. Either way, complaining accomplishes little other than defining the problem. Defining the problem is only the first step in finding and implementing a solution. As with everything else, follow through is everything.
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