I have been working at Twitch full-time (Less than a year)
Great company doing great things. Love everything about working here. Could not ask for a better company to work for IMO. Sure the work is hard and plentiful but what real job isn't if it's worth anything.
I don't care too much for San Francisco or the commute everyday (not that Twitch can do anything about that). Other than that no problems for me.
Advice to Management
Keep up the great work. Totally love it!
I worked at Twitch full-time (Less than a year)
Some incredibly smart, motivated people work there. If you can engage them you will do amazing things. Dogs allowed in the office, which is incredible. Support staff and contractors are hard-working and friendly, and the office is in a convenient location.
I relocated internationally for a job at Twitch. Unfortunately the company was moving and hiring so fast that I got sidetracked into fulfilling a need that was not really what I do, and I'm not particularly good at. I was yelled at a lot for not being particularly good at this thing that is not what I do.
Inside of the company is middle management hell. Emmett Shear is probably the smartest person I've ever met, and his corporate values are incredible, but they functionally don't exist. Middle managers have different agendas from other middle managers and sometimes these stack and are opposite to each other. By the time said directions reach workers it can be impossible to know which to follow. On more than one occasion I had been dealt with harshly by my manager for following the directions they gave me.
The reality is that everyone's so afraid of the culture being warped that they hold things very close to their chest. If you ever raise a problem in someone else's department as Emmett specifically instructs, prepare for trouble, abuse, and people lying about you to your manager. I grew more depressed, made worse by the fact that the food made me sick almost every other day. I stopped eating with the team to avoid diarrhoea. This sounds like a joke. It isn't. I discovered some less-than-ethical behavior and tried to see if perhaps there was something I'd not understood, and instead was treated with disdain.
This company will set you up for failure and then make it your fault when you do. It was utterly disappointing and an incredible yet awful experience. My volunteered time raised tens of thousands for charity, helped professional esports teams reach their goals, and spent as much time as any broadcaster was willing to input working with them to improve their show. But the time spent after work not wanting to speak to or see anyone from being burnt out more than overcame that.
Not working at Twitch is an great feeling, and it's very conflicting loving the site and userbase so much but having the back-end running of an organization be so depressing.
When people read this (and I know they will, having seen people publicly mock negative glass-door reviews of current employees), if they figure out who I am they will find ways to disregard this feedback by personally attacking me to invalidate the experience.
Maybe there was a time when Twitch knew who it was. Maybe Emmett's ideals existed when there were 20, 50, 100 people. At 500, they haven't for some time. Overall, I guess it was a good experience, in the way that terrible things sometimes are for the roller-coaster they put you through.
While there are many good things about the company, I cannot in any good conscience recommend a career here - only a job. No Kappa.
Advice to Management
- Make sure Twitch Values are known and reinforced at all levels
- An org chart is funcitonally useless if no-one knows who to talk to when they have a problem with [blank], teams are heavily silo'd. Assign inter-dept liasons, publicly listed.
- Prepare food on-site rather than catered, a small unscientific survey I took of 10 people showed 7 of 10 complained regularly of getting the runs
- Improve reporting to Amazon; the overlords suspect many dodgy things are going on, hiding it won't help. They know, trust me.
- More IT. Requestioning basic hardware takes 2 - 3 months (up from 2 - 3 days when I started)
- The visionaries are either in management already, or leaving. Identify staff with leadership potential, foster their growth within the org.
- Understand that your staff will receive at least 1 linkedin poaching request from a major tech company a month. Perks won't keep people around, they just make life easier. Perks aren't real - the relationships within the company are. Work to develop more relationships and ensure that people know how their products fill inter-departmental requirements.
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