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Thoughts On Amazon Recruiting In Minneapolis

Last week Kathy Grayson at the Minneapolis St Paul Business Journal posted this article Amazon’s cloud-computing arm shops for Twin Cities talent

There have been some interesting reactions to the news ranging from:

Why here - yes, we do have a lot of very good IT pros here & who are looking for something new

Who would want to move to Seattle - two words, polar vortex

Oh crap, we can’t compete with them – yes, yes you can

So let’s cover those briefly…

To those who say we do not have enough talented IT pros in town or that we can’t compete with groups on the coast I say this… BS

Too strong? I have a much stronger response that will likely offend a bunch of you.

So let me pull this from the article… this is a more polite way of saying it:

Scott Burns, CEO of growing St. Paul software company GovDelivery Inc., said he's not surprised Amazon is recruiting in Minnesota.

"Anyone from Amazon or from Google is wise to tap into this market. We have a lot of talent," he said. "We compete by making [GovDelivery] an awesome place to work."

Since I spoke about my recruiting trip to Dallas earlier this year and for those who know I have been actively recruiting in Silicon Valley and the Bay Area I have heard of a few groups who have been doing the same.

Sure we may lose some folks to other parts of the country… folks from other parts of the country are looking for “greener pastures” too. And I think Minneapolis should be considered as a destination.

Also from the article:

Talent doesn't only flow from Minnesota to the West Coast. It can go the other way, too.

Several Twin Cities tech companies have a track record of recruiting developers and executives from the West Coast, partly by targeting Minnesota natives who moved away. Code42, for instance, hired Amazon executive Jason Bristow in May to serve as its chief financial officer.

If you can’t tell… I’m freaking tired of this “woe is me” attitude so many companies in town have.

Have a good executive team, pay folks well, treat them well and think about their career paths and you don’t have to worry about Amazon, Google, Facebook or any of the groups who have been recruiting here the past two years.

And if you are a company like that join me in bringing people to Minnesota.

The best defense is a good offense.

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