Why should I start my career at Microsoft, rather than a startup?  

Kevin at Microsoft writes:

Startups can seem exciting, but when you consider tech jobs, remember the risks. When you picture success at an early-stage company, you may take inspiration from the money you will earn once the company “hits it big.”

On the other hand, choosing Microsoft to launch your career provides nothing but upside.

Don’t believe the hype. I admit I’m biased, but for tech jobs, Microsoft is your best bet.

Dear Kevin,

While I agree that Microsoft can provide fulfilling careers to many people, that’s just a terrible response. Given Microsoft’s history with startups, I never expected such condescension. (Incidentally, if the hype isn’t worth believing, why bother fueling it with Bizspark?)

Top talent think critically. You need to present a logical argument. You don’t convince people that you’re cool by saying you’re cool.

More importantly, you assume that great engineers are only interested in startups to “hit it big”. How about the chance to directly influence the product, disrupt industries, and ship daily to production? When people consider working at startups, there are a lot more motivations at play than just an exit.

Is Microsoft so desperate for talent that you would so willingly dismiss an entire segment of the tech industry and its brilliant engineers you crave for?

Follow up: I’ve spent some time at Microsoft, and have only good things to say about my experience.

My qualm isn’t with the company, but rather, the content, approach and flippant tone of Kevin’s post. Having previously worked there, that’s not something I’d expect from the company, which is disappointing.

Catch me on Twitter over here, or follow the discussion on Hacker News.


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