After finding out I was going to work for Microsoft, friend of mine asked “Why are you working for the man? Aren’t you into startups?” My response was mostly “I like getting a paycheck every two weeks” but there’s more to it than that.
Sure, stability is a huge benefit of a regular full time job. I get health insurance, time off, and the pay is pretty good too. That’s not the biggest reason I don’t want to do a startup (right now). The biggest reason is that there isn’t an idea I’m passionate enough about that I’m willing to devote my life to.
I know that if I just join up with someone else’s idea, I’m not going to be passionate enough to deal with all the stupid stuff that startup founders have to deal with. If I founded a company, I could be left dealing with things like payroll, bills, and legal issues. I don’t want to deal with that right now. I want to focus on making cool shit.
But what about all the stupid stuff you have to deal with when you work for the man? That stuff just isn’t that important. If I forget to log my task estimation hours my manager might send me an email. If I forgot to pay my companies electric bill the consequences are a little more severe.
I don’t have to found a company though. I could join up as a developer and have a HUGE impact on the company. That definitely has some appeal and maybe someday that’s what I’ll do. Right now, I’m enjoying working for “the man” and am happy that the software I work on will be used by millions of people.