No? I didn't think so. But just in case I've piqued your curiousity, check out this video clip on Channel 9. Chris Sells gives a tour of building 5, where most of us MSDN folk work (the magazine team is in NYC). He stops in at my staff meeting and checks in with some folks on our team. He also hangs out in my office, showing the world my clutter. Oh well. I hope my mom doesn't tune in.
People are often surprised when they come to my office. I have comfy chairs, and cheerfully striped rug, hanging rheostat-controlled lamps, and a lot of toys and gadgets. Yes, it's nice to work in a comfy (albeit messy) office, but I have a another motive:
Management trick #42: Have a comfy chair in your office.
If you've got a comfy chair, people come by and talk with you. It's much more inviting than leaning on the doorsill, or sitting in an industrial-strength guest chair. While folks sit in my comfy chair, they tell me what's on their mind, give me a sounding board for whatever issue I'm muddling over, and tell me things that I wouldn't necessarily get from email or a formal meeting. Of course I learn about social comings and goings, but I also hear about challenges and problems that I wouldn't hear about otherwise. Tim drops by to educate me about XML, our publishing infrastructure, and New England politics. Chris gives me the blow by blow on all things Longhorn, and Laura regularly reminds me that there is no more room in the schedule, and that we can't add any more features to our next release. Sure, I might learn about these things eventually, but the drop-in factor is powerful. Don espouses the same trick - he has very comfy chair/sofa thing in his office.
And, of course, there are some other nice side effects. I love kids, and toys are a kid magnet, so all the kids know to come play in my office when they come to visit their parents. :-)
Incidently, MSDN is looking for a dev manager. We haven't posted a job description yet, but if you are interested and qualified, send me email (NOT a comment), and perhaps you'll be able to drop in yourself!