Monday, December 27, 2004


(Well, that title might be a href="">bit obscure, but href="">maybe

The href="
p=0">What's Next for Google article pointed to via href="">Slashdot has the following benefits

...In a Playboy interview published shortly
before Google's IPO, Brin and Page did not mention competitive threats.
Rather, they talked about corporate ethics, the creation of foundations, and
their efforts to make Google a great place to work.

Google is a great
place to work. My friends there absolutely love the place, and in part for
that reason, they work very hard. Google allows pets and provides employees
with laundry service, drinks, meals, massages, car washes, and (soon) child
care. Its corporate motto is "Don't be evil." But long ago, a professor of
mine, noting my youthful idealism, remarked that the only successful neutral
nations are those, like Switzerland, that are permanently armed to the
teeth. And for Google, neutrality is not an option.

I know that Google is a lot smaller and can lavish benefits like this on
their employees. Surely if Google survives and gets bigger and bigger they
won't be serving three-squares a day and making their employee life so easy
that they can simply concentrate on doing a great job. Er,

Sigh. Google, Google, Google!

I still think Microsoft is
trimming muscle instead of fat in their hopes to appease Wall Street with
their adherence to doing the best job possible managing Microsoft
Corporation for the shareholders. When management's bitter harvest unfurls
its withered crop, the bad decisions to make Microsoft a tepid workplace
creating tepid results will not be what is foisted out as the target of

As I ruminate the eroding Microsoft benefits and perks (make
no mistake, what remains is still better than average
), I find the
recent href="">Sea
ttle Weekly article about CostCo interesting as it recounts the CostCo
management telling Wall Street to blow off when given harsh financial advice
about trimming back on benefits to increase profits and share price. Now I
see benefits cut-backs as a little quickie-financial algorithm that someone
executed within Microsoft vs. taking a moment to actually think about what
really needs to be cut (staff).

So we don't have official gala
holiday party events - I don't miss them, but as Microsoft trims back on its
parties, href="
3-5494010.html">Yahoo and Google fire them up. Me? I can pay for my own
food and I don't have a dog. As a small example of something I do miss: I
miss the holiday shipping benefit. I still ship physical stuff and it saved
me a lot of time to go over to, say, Pebble Beach and quickly send off my
packages. Then I was happy and got back to work quickly and wrote some, if I
do say so, great freaking code. Now I come back frazzled and PO'd.

there plenty of folks who shook their Christmas stocking hard, hoping that
out would fall some evidence that Microsoft super-values its employees?
Given where Microsoft is right now it just plain can't. We've started down
the atrophying path of benefit and budget cut-backs. And what does the
weenie that replaced the shrimp get replaced with as we go down the next
level? It's sort of the reverse of "href="">If
You Give a Mouse a Cookie." And I don't think it ends at

I again suggest that the brakes be slammed on and for management
to express what might seem to be an oddly opposing message:

  1. We
    super-value our employees and demonstrate this by the following benefits and
    perks that we have crafted to increase employee morale, satisfaction, and
  2. We are vastly overstaffed for the challenges we need to
    succeed at and have started a 10% reduction of the worldwide

Microsoft, Microsoft, Microsoft!

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