Why I Quit Google to Work for Myself - Silly Bits


187 bookmarks. First posted by harterrt february 2018.


For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present.
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11 days ago by marcusrelacion
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present.
engineering  google  programming 
5 weeks ago by a4j
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present. Well, I guess it’s a little more complicated than that.
may 2018 by pitiphong_p
Wait a second. I was in a business relationship with Google. That conversation made me realize that I’m not Google. I provide a service to Google in exchange for money.
career  engineering  google  management  corporate 
april 2018 by soobrosa
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present.…
IFTTT  Instapaper 
april 2018 by archangel
Why left Google without having a big plan to fall back on:

This isn't unco…
from twitter
march 2018 by codepo8
RT @deliberatecoder:
career  google  management  engineering  business 
march 2018 by kogakure
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present. Well, I guess it’s a little more complicated than that.
Archive 
march 2018 by fraz87
RT @deliberatecoder:
career  google  management  reference 
march 2018 by WimLeers
"Wait a second. *I* was in a business relationship with Google."
google  career 
march 2018 by pb
Interesting inside about Google promotion culture via
from twitter
march 2018 by crow
The pipeline didn’t record many metrics. The ones it did have made it look like things had gotten worse. My bug discoveries caused the overall bug count to increase. The pipeline’s failures increased because I made it fail fast on anomalies instead of silently passing along bad data. I drastically reduced the time developers spent repairing those failures, but there were no metrics that tracked developer time.

My other work didn’t look so good on paper either. On several occasions, I put my projects on hold for weeks or even months at a time to help a teammate whose launch was at risk. It was the right decision for the team, but it looked unimpressive in a promo packet. To the promotion committee, my teammate’s project was the big, important work that demanded coordination from multiple developers. If they hornswoggled me into helping them, it’s evidence of their strong leadership qualities. I was just the mindless peon whose work was so irrelevant that it could be pre-empted at a moment’s notice.
data  google  stats  metrics 
march 2018 by twwoodward
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present. Well, I guess it’s a little more complicated than that. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket 
march 2018 by arronpj
entrepreneurship is a hard hustle for 20+ years.
lots of discipline with time and money required.
But that's the only decent way to live.
march 2018 by npras
Michael Lynch became frustrated at trying to make an impact inside Google:
<p>It was the third time in six months that my manager had reassigned me midway through a project. Each time, he assured me that it had nothing to do with the quality of my work, but rather some shift in upper management strategy or team headcount.

At this point, I took a step back to assess what was happening from a high level. Forget my manager, forget his managers, forget the promotion committee. What if I boiled it down to just me and just Google? What was happening in our “business relationship?”

Well, Google kept telling me that it couldn’t judge my work until it saw me complete a project. Meanwhile, I couldn’t complete any projects because Google kept interrupting them midway through and assigning me new ones.

The dynamic felt absurd.

My career was being dictated by a shifting, anonymous committee who thought about me for an hour of their lives. Management decisions that I had no input into were erasing months of my career progress.

Worst of all, I wasn’t proud of my work. Instead of asking myself, “How can I solve this challenging problem?” I was asking, “How can I make this problem look challenging for promotion?” I hated that.

Even if I got the promotion, what then? Popular wisdom said that each promotion was exponentially harder than the last. To continue advancing my career, I’d need projects that were even larger in scope and involved collaboration with more partner teams. But that just meant the project could fail due to even more factors outside my control, wasting months or years of my life.

<img src="https://mtlynch.io/images/2018-02-28-why-i-quit-google/book-publisher.png" width="100%" />
</p>
Google  project 
march 2018 by charlesarthur
adopted a new strategy. Before starting any task, I asked myself whether it would help my case for promotion. If the answer was no, I didn’t do it.

My quality bar for code dropped from, “Will we be able to maintain this for the next 5 years?” to, “Can this last until I’m promoted?” I didn’t file or fix any bugs unless they risked my project’s launch. I wriggled out of all responsibilities for maintenance work. I stopped volunteering for campus recruiting events. I went from conducting one or two interviews per week to zero.
google  career 
march 2018 by Ciudilo
RT : Turns out being a small cog in a very cool and complex machine is still kind of a bummer.
from twitter_favs
march 2018 by roens
Why I Quit Google to Work for Myself -
instapaper  reading  from twitter
march 2018 by gyurisc
File under: best of 2018.

For the KPI crowd. I hope it's a bit of a wakeup call.

How Google does promotions:
A promotion committee then reviews your packet with a handful of others, and they spend the day deciding who gets promoted and who doesn’t.

During my two-year honeymoon phase, this system sounded great to me. Of course my fate should be in the hands of a mysterious committee who’s never met me. They wouldn’t be tainted by any sort of favoritism or politics. They’d see past all that and recognize me for my high-quality code and shrewd engineering decisions.


What happens when you try to do the right thing in a KPI-driven environment:
I proudly and lovingly nursed the pipeline back to health. I fixed dozens of bugs and wrote automated tests to make sure they wouldn’t reappear. I deleted thousands of lines of code that were either dead or could be replaced by modern libraries. I documented the pipeline as I learned it so that the institutional knowledge was available to my teammates instead of siloed in my head.

The problem, as I discovered at promotion time, was that none of this was quantifiable. I couldn’t prove that anything I did had a positive impact on Google.


Then realization hits:
It may sound strange that it took me two and a half years to realize it, but Google does a good job of building a sense of community within the organization. To make us feel that we’re not just employees, but that we are Google.

That conversation made me realize that I’m not Google. I provide a service to Google in exchange for money.


This is where we always end up:
My first denied promotion taught me the wrong lesson. I thought I could keep doing the same work but package it to look good for the promotion committee. I should have done the opposite: figure out what the promotion committee wants, and do that work exclusively.

I adopted a new strategy. Before starting any task, I asked myself whether it would help my case for promotion. If the answer was no, I didn’t do it.
programming  career  google  management  performance 
march 2018 by jefframnani
Promotions at Google are determined by whether your manager will let you work on a project long enough to complete it
engineering  employment 
march 2018 by shusta
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present.…
from instapaper
march 2018 by tonyandrewmeyer
I adopted a new strategy. Before starting any task, I asked myself whether it would help my case for promotion. If the answer was no, I didn’t do it.
ss  trendtech 
march 2018 by seaugust
This is a hard lesson everyone learns eventually: only you own your career: “Why I Quit Google to Work for Myself “
from twitter
march 2018 by joshpuetz
Why I Quit Google to Work for Myself – Silly Bits
from twitter
march 2018 by jackysee
For the past four years, I’ve worked as a software developer at Google. On February 1st, I quit. It was because they refused to buy me a Christmas present.…
from instapaper
march 2018 by hustwj
Why I Quit Google to Work for Myself via // every performance evaluation s…
from twitter_favs
march 2018 by ianbyrd