I work for one of the largest tech companies in the world. My role is Project Manager, without direct authority over resources. I joined this company 3 months back.

I joined this company from a startup which was later acquired by BIGNAMECO company and everyone from the startup left. I have an extensive technical background. In my last role I was a Data Engineering Manager. I was leading a team of four engineers. I was hand-on at my previous job and did a lot of coding along with other engineers.

This new company I joined seems to be moving at a snail's speed, even though they claim they are moving really fast and are the world's biggest startup (haha!).

Everyone seem to be super focused on internal processes - 90 % of which are useless. There is less focus on actual delivery. From my previous job, I got into the habit of moving and finishing projects at lightening speed. A project estimated here as 6 months can easily done in 2 months at a startup. I also have a better understanding of the technologies used in the project than all the other engineers combined.

Since I am new and don't have direct authority I tend to keep quiet. But, I get incredibly bored creating useless documents. To be honest these documents mean nothing. The only good thing about this new job is the paycheck. In a not-so-expensive city, I make good money. I can't switch jobs immediately due to other hurdles.

My next goal is to move into the broader role of director or VP of analytics/data science in 2 years from now.

Any suggestions on what shall I do and how do I find a way to keep myself challenged technologically and achieve my next goal?

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    VTC as primarily opinion-based. Processes and "meaningless work" is part of any job, this Company you say is a start-up and is trying to define itself so you will either stick through it or get out of there. – VaeInimicus Sep 13 '16 at 11:59
  • Hard to believe; I suspect you have a jaundiced view of what is going on. Why no try approach this in the "Solutions, not Problems" frame of mind - and see how you can position yourself to move things along. – Danny Schoemann Sep 13 '16 at 13:10

Since I am new and don't have direct authority I tend to keep quiet.

It's true that, as a new employee, you should avoid being all gung-ho and attempting to change everything, but that doesn't mean you have to be quiet. Instead, try to approach things from a neutral standpoint, or even better, from a position of wanting to learn. Instead of saying, "That's wrong, don't do that", try something like "Why is this necessary? Who benefits?" or "What's the rationale/history behind this requirement?", perhaps followed by "Is there a reason why we can't do [alternative] instead?"

If you approach things from the standpoint of simply pointing out flaws, then you could be seen as 'that arrogant upstart who thinks s/he's better than us.' If, instead, you approach with an attitude of wanting to learn and do things for the good of the company, then the worst you could come off as is a little annoying - with the best case being you bring about actual improvement.

Keep in mind, also, that you might simply not understand some of these 'useless' processes. Keep an open mind and you might just learn some things.

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  • I like this recommendation. Sometimes a lot can be accomplished simply by asking people to explain why they do things a certain way to an "outsider". Many processes are built bit by bit across silos of people, and we're not always encouraged to step back and think of things end-to-end. Inflicting such a thought process on people can yield surprising results. Of course, like you say, the person with the superiority complex all too easily ends up being the one who wasn't seeing the big picture. ;) – Wandering NPC Sep 13 '16 at 20:23

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