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Employee Exodus from Google
Friday, January 04, 2008
Google (GOOG) is known as one of the best companies to work for in the world. But has anyone else noticed the trend of veteran Google employees leaving Google in recent weeks? I find this interesting as Google is often considered one of the greatest places to work. We've all heard about Google and its unique company culture. For anyone who has ever visited the Googleplex you'll understand what I mean. Yet since Google went public in the late summer of 2004, a number of key personnel have began new endeavors outside of Google.

So why are Googlers leaving the Search Giant? Here's a look at some of the recent departures from Google.

According to Search Engine Land, Kevin Fox, Google's user experience designer, responsible for helping design Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Reader 2.0 has announced he is leaving Google to join a "very small start-up." Upon leaving Kevin had nothing but great things to say about Google.

About three weeks ago, Nathan Stoll, long time Google News Product Manager announced that he was leaving Google. From a post on his blog, Nathan communicated that:
This decision has been quite difficult but ends with positive feelings. I've felt in the past months as if I was breaking up with Google, and I don't think that to be a stretched analogue. I have countless close friends who I've been through the eye of the storm with to see clear sky, and we have history that is hard to think past. So, for all of my friends still in the 'plex, know that "it's not you (Google), it's me," and I hope that we can still stay close after we take some time apart.
An interesting choice of words as Stoll departs from Google. Other Google employees appear to be leaving to cash in on their Google success. Last month, Chris Sacca who was considered a Wi-Fi guru at Google left with his stock options fully vested for a new career as a venture capitalist. Other ex-Googlers to recently depart include Vanessa Fox a key player with Google's Webmaster Tools product, Satya Patel a former Google advertising exec, Paul Buchheit who transformed Google's GMail product, and Georges Harik who ran a number of Google's new businesses outside of Search. These are but a small sample of Googlers who have flown the coop.

Are Veteran Google Employees Simply Bored?

Many of Google's veteran employees have become millionaires from Google and are hoping to parlay their newfound wealth into even greater riches by becoming venture capitalist and investing in a number of technology start-ups. Google has made a lot of their veteran employees a lot of money. It's pretty amazing actually as to how much. So as these new millionaires cash in on Google's success they may be looking to new ventures outside of Google to keep them from becoming complacent or bored. While there appears to be a "mass exodus" in recent weeks and months from Google, the Search leader still has over 16,000 employees that are part of the Google family. Earlier last year. Google CEO, Eric Schmidt stated that Google was going to be less aggressive in the pursuit of new talent as hiring costs appeared to be an issue for many analysts following the company. With Google's Q4 2007 Earnings release slated for January 31, 2008, you wonder if the recent departure of veteran employees will a topic of discussion?

Additional Resources

Working in the GooglePlex
Fortune's Best Places to Work in 2007
Google News / Press Releases


posted by Jody @ Friday, January 04, 2008  
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