Company Owner's Hobby Causing Problems?

This is, obviously, spurred by the collapsing Dedicated Micros race car driving CEO.

That said, I have seen this problem directly.

When I was an integrator, the owner was big into surfing and boating. There were many problems but one that really highlighted it was when he decided to park his boat in the warehouse. So I told him he had to move it. He was genuinely surprised, responding that he had nowhere else to put the boat (for whatever reason that I forget now).

He was a nice guy but struggled to understand (1) the operational disruption (and probable OSHA violation) of having a boat in the middle of the warehouse plus (2) the cultural / motivational problem of having the poorly paid hourly techs having to navigate around the rich guy's boat.

Anyone have any experiences like that? Do you see CEO bringing their hobbies into work?


I remember when I used to work at a wholesale lumber yard, the owner had his darn parrot there and it whistled the University of Oklahoma fight song all the time!!

Sean, are you a Sooner or Poke?

Neither: Tulsa Golden Hurricane baby!

So you don't watch Bedlam?

Sure I will watch it. Im not a hater of either team. I will root for them whenever they arent playing TU.

Man, I'd whistle that for corn chips too.

I've worked for people whose hobby was taking drugs. Those guys never know when to separate their hobby from their business. My advice is find another job.

My hobby is CCTV, computers and technology so no issues here. I started the company to fund my addiction to technology and so far everything has worked out as planned.

Funny enough, one of my first professional jobs was as a programmer for a nationwide off airport shuttle service called ParkRideFly.

Ok that's not funny, but the owner Ed Kennedy was a NASCAR modified race car driver, albeit not in the same league as the Dedicated Auto's CEO.

He raced in various locales across the country using the mechanics and the garages used for the shuttles as his local race shop and instant pit crew.

There was never a problem with work and play separation with Ed; they weren't seperate!

I remember when I was working on included a new POS tax calculation, he told me to put it on hold, because he needed me to write a computer simulator to predict during a race when to change tires!

Nobody really had a problem with it, that I remember. Mainly because Edso was a great guy, and you pretty much knew the deal going in.

Eventually he sold the company to some other chain, and I see now that he has bought a track himself in Indiana. Which seems good...

I have the bad habit of parking my toy in the warehouse. but my toy is a 1986 toyota that hasnt been driven in years. I'm sure there is some fallout from it being there, though and I hadnt thought about the employee perspective, I suppose it might have been more obvious if it was a boat.

Well, I used to work for a guy who's hobby was the receptionist. That didn't work out well for anyone....