Re: 100 Tek Photos

Stephen Hanselman

Hmmm, to an extent I'd have to disagree sort of. When I was coming up in the SF Bay Area the watch word was to go work at Tek for a couple of years them go someplace that would actually pay a semi-living wage. At the time Tek paid Beaverton wages in the middle of Silicon Valley.

On the other hand EVERYONE said if you wanted to polish electronics skills Tek was the place to go


-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of Tony Fleming
Sent: Thursday, September 12, 2019 9:55 AM
Subject: Re: [TekScopes] 100 Tek Photos

Lets hope that they move back to USA!
Lots of companies are coming back to USA and that would be great!
Nothing is for ever and after changes in our government, we will see if they STAY in the USA or not!

On Thu, Sep 12, 2019 at 11:47 AM Mlynch001 <> wrote:


I don't think those observations are at all disparaging, they simply
are evidence of how great things are done. It has been lost to many,
that most of the great innovations from which we have benefited
actually originated from fairly humble beginnings or circumstances.
From what I have read about early TEKTRONIX corporate culture and
policies, I would say that these people were not so much worried about
peg boards and home built work benches. By all accounts Mr. Vollum and Mr.
Murdock as well as other TEK management, treated their workers well,
especially in the ways that count. In the early days, there was none
of the "them against us" attitude which permeated most corporations of
the day AND dominates the corporate landscape today. Compare "blue
collar" TEK of the day to "blue collar" GM (and many others as well)
of the day, the difference in corporate culture and treatment of the
rank and file people are 180 degrees opposite. I cannot recall
reading an account of any TEK employee of the day remembering that the
company was a terrible or oppressive place to work. On the other
hand, there are tens of thousands who wrote and remember the awful
working conditions at GM (and other contemporary companies') plants during the same time period.
The most productive days of the TEK legacy were those that
germinated from what now may be regarded as "sparse" working
conditions. In general, people appreciate and respond to being
treated like they have immense value to the company and are equals.
These people were members of that "Greatest Generation" what came out
of the Depression and WWII, these people persisted and succeeded as they had always done, in spite of hardships.
This spirit is what is missing in most "modern corporate" culture of
the day and continues to dominate today. We may have fancy offices
and state of the art facilities, but workers are not generally
appreciated or respected by their "bosses". Workers are simply
another cubicle wall, copier or desk that can be easily replaced when
the board of directors decides that the company image needs an "upgrade". Most of the "sparse"
working conditions (and the blue collar jobs) have moved to Asian
"sweat shops", what remains here are the gleaming edifices of "the corporation".
No jobs, except for the Board of directors and the administration staff.
I, myself, would rather that I was treated as if I was important,
even vital part of a company and work from a "home made" work bench.
There seems to be little evidence that these workers did not have the
tools that they needed, but the spirit of innovation and the frugal
nature of these people are visible in these sparse, home made
facilities. Since there was a generous performance bonus at the time,
I would bet that many people said, "Hey! we don't need that expensive
office suite or workbench, let's build one out of this stuff" and the
savings went into the profit of the company. Profits which the "blue
collar" employee actually benefited from. Compared to today, where
any "Profit" generally goes to the CEO and others at the top, the
workers get little or nothing (except the blame for lack of profit).
Early expansion of TEK facilities was driven by need, not by
appearance of corporate image. Oh what a change when compared to today's culture.
You are correct, being a continent away from government interference
did not hurt. Today, that has all changed, It seems as these work
benches and pegboards disappeared from TEKTRONIX, so did the
innovative spirit of the workers. In later years, the facilities
became very grand, and the shift from "actual results" to "corporate
image" became complete. In short, the spirit of Mr. Vollum and Mr.
Murdock (and others of their vein) was replaced by the faceless "board of directors", it was downhill from there.

Just my thoughts and ramblings.

Michael Lynch
Dardanelle, AR

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