Impact vs Scope: Some Thoughts on Steve Yegge Leaving Google and How to Retain your Best People

  1. Risk aversion
  2. Politics
  3. Arrogance
  4. Competitor instead of customer focus

Impact: The Unspoken Reason

When I joined Microsoft last decade, a common reason for joining the company was a desire to “change the world” which has since become a tech company cliche. However the reality is that companies like Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, Google and even Uber (who we all love to hate) have changed the world in massive ways.

Understanding Scope Versus Impact

When I talk to college students weighing working at a big tech company versus a start up I like to ask them to think about whether they care more about impact or scope.

What does this Mean for Retaining your Best People?

Both employers and employees should be aware of the continuum of scope versus impact both at the company level as well as for various individual positions. Big companies that seem attractive because of their ability to impact many are often stifling due to lack of scope especially for newer hires. Startups squander their scope advantage if they do not give employees autonomy and reduce overlapping responsibilities which could lead to the dreaded politics.

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Dare Obasanjo

Dare Obasanjo

"Everything you touch you change. Everything you change, changes you" - Octavia Butler, Parable of the Sower