Earlier this month, Mark Suster published what I consider to be one of the best startup blog posts of the year in his Earn or Learn article. The first point in the article refreshed something that young, mid-stage startup employees (like myself) frequently forget: your engineer’s share of the options isn’t going to make you rich. It may be a nice bonus, but there’s almost no chance of retiring in the unlikely event of a liquidation.
The second point resonated even stronger. If the job you’re in isn’t going to make you rich, it needs to be preparing you for the position that will. If you’re in a learning stage, keep that in mind every day on your way to work. Since the article was talking about advice for whether or not to take a new job it also left out one possibility: move. If you’re holding a job with little possibility of earning or learning, it may be time for a change.
My next few posts will give some areas of concentration for startup employees trying to learn as much as possible from their experience.