Today was my first day in the Auckland EY office. Justin walked me down to the office which was nice since I was nervous to start work in a new place. It has been a long 7 years since I have done that. My computer was ready for me but that was about it. They did not have my desk, phone, or even my internet password ready. Everyone I met was very nice although a little different.
The office is an entirely open plan so no one has an office. The cubes are set up in a 4 cubes to a "pod" arrangement and in the "pods" by the windows, a partner and/or senior manager sits by the window. It is a little odd to be sitting in an open 4 cube area with a partner but it also seems to lead to an even more open door policy than we have in the US.
The office has views of the harbor and surrounding islands on 3 sides which is pretty cool. The office is decorated with inspirational quotes on the wall and yellow beams just like home! As Crazy Uncle said, it is familiar, yet different. I didn't have much to do today but read up on the history of the NZ tax code.
I had tea at a nearby cafe with Aaron, the lead people partner, and lunch with my peer buddy, Claire. I was also introduced to a few of the partners and managers. I met a woman from the UK, a woman from Scotland, and a woman from Russia today. They all transferred with EY to the Auckland office. I also met a guy on rotation from our San Antonio office. Claire told me that the office is actually about half international and half Kiwi. That seems to fit the population of the city as whole as it is not uncommon to hear several different accents/languages while walking down the street.