In one TGIF in Kirkland, an employee informed Eric Schmidt that Microsoft’s benefits package was richer. He announced himself genuinely surprised, which genuinely surprised me. Schmidt, in the presence of witnesses, promised to bring the benefits to a par. He consulted HR, and HR informed him that it’d cost Google 22 million a year to do that. So he abandoned the promise and fell back on his tired, familiar standby (”People don’t work at Google for the money. They work at Google because they want to change the world!”). A statement that always seemed to me a little Louis XIV coming from a billionaire.Amen to that. I too have heard about similar stories of senior management folks who, having made their fortunes in stock options, feign incredulity and exclaim, "Don't tell me you are in it for the money!", when the sorry fact is that if the next month's paycheck isn't in, it's a question of which bill can you postpone payment for.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
It's all about the money (well, for most of us)
From a post by an ex-Google employee: