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Silicon Valley Talent Raid

Living in the Midwest all my life I have learned that most trends, be it music, fashion, slang, and yes employment, start on the coasts and act as a wave across the country and at some point make its way to the Midwest. By the time it gets here the wave or impact is not as big as when it started but well, you get it.

The downturn of 2000 took a while to get to Minneapolis and the impact was not as deep in comparison to other regions. In the same way the upturn took a while to get here too.

So having prepped this too much here is an article “Revenge Of The Nerds--Again" from Business Week.

Google and Yahoo have been raiding Silicon Valley talent to build up their engineer ranks. In the 2nd quarter Google hired 230 engineers. Yahoo has hired dozens more.

My how times have changed. As the article points out Microsoft and Sun Micro used to be the place for the cool techies to go. Now it’s the Internet search that is the next cool thing.

The culture of Google reminds me of the dot-com days with their roller-hockey games, gourmet meals, and digital toilets. Yeah, no kidding, Toilets with seat temperature. Ahh, refreshing…


Sure Microsoft has a lot of cash to pay top talent but it has sued Google and a former employee for breaching a non-compete clause.

The trend to watch is if Microsoft now starts raiding other companies to fill their ranks. If so, we could be off the races again like the late 90’s when recruiting and retaining was as much about foosball and designer coffee than it was about 9-5.



Do you think that Engineers will pretty much go where they find the challenge? Granted, it makes it easier when digital toilet are offered (yikes), but I would think they want the challenge and the development more than anything.

Granted, having said that, I'm recruiting engineers in San Jose against the likes of Cisco, et al. Our office building pales in comparison to the hi-tech cool of Cisco. Although we are a global company, we can't get engineers interested in making the change. Maybe we need the foosball and digital toilet seats, eh?

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