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October 20, 2005


great post!

Rick, excellent post!

So obvious, so no-brainer, so cost-efficient, so human, so smart, so...

Must assume the people in such firms are smart, but how dumb are those organisations after all :)

Great Post. I left MS last year...and while I was not satisfied by the way I was handled while I worked was amazing how my manager and his manager both came to talk to me and understand why I was leaving. How genuine they were....take a guess...but it did change my perspective about the management (in a positive way) a little bit..even to the extent that I started thinking if my next venture does not turn out the way I expect it to...I might give MS another shot...just a thought :)

Fat Chance!

Welcome to the world of ''What have you done for ME lately?'' It is not just large companies, although they do have the most to lose.


Really good post. It isn't until you see this stuff in writing sometimes that the pure "obviousness" of it becomes clear. I just recently gave my two week notice at large Fortune 500 company to pursue my own business. I'll be doing an exit interview next week or the week after.....It'll be interesting to see if any of your suggestions creep into the conversation.

On #1(do interview yourself) unrealistic. waste of people's time. by the time you get to your exit interview with HR you most probably have had a chance to talk to your manager and people above if you were someone they were really interested in keeping.
On #2 (say thank you) - they do. they did to me.
On #3 ("come back pass") - it's been there for a long time. there's an email account for ex-msfties to send resume and you will have priority attention. I did and got an ms recruiter email with a job opening for me and an interview the following week.
on #4 (free software/etc). Hardly any FTE gets these so how do you expect people that leave the company to get them as well , and for free!, now you are being ridiculous.
btw, If you become a member of the msft alumni you get the same discount fte's get at the MS company store.
on #5 (keep a connection) . It's been available for more than a decade! Goto and request your own. easy.
on #6(respect). you have some self-confidence issues you need to work on.

"Bosch, a German provider of automotive, industrial and consumer products, introduced an interesting method for retaining critical knowledge in the organization. Older workers who possess critical knowledge and are about to retire are
asked to take part in a special program. Prior to retirement, these employees fill in a form about the knowledge they gained during their careers. This information is synthesized and captured in a database used by project managers around the world. If these project managers have a difficult project that requires specialist knowledge, they can search the database to determine if there are retired workers
that fit their needs. These people are then asked to work for a short period of time during the project and support the team by bringing in knowledge gained during their previous tenure with the company.

- IBM Institute for Business Value executive brief:
"A human capital perspective for companies operating in Europe: Addressing the challenges of an aging workforce"

Your post exemplifies a lot of what is wrong with corporate America today. Everyone is expected to be rah-rah part of a big corporate happy family until they leave. Of course I worked at a mom&pop hi-tech startup where leaving was even worse. At this start-up, once a person left, it was considered treason. So, in that respect, the anonymity of a corporate goodbye is preferable.

Basically, workers in big companies are commodities. There is no way around it. True, the company will lose lots of knowledge when a person leaves. True, the company will spend 1.5 a person's annual salary to replace them. But the corporation is a machine that keeps on churning. The corporation doesn't value individual unique contributions. A worker is merely a set of quantifiable skills used to produce or support or sell a product. A worker is easily replaced. Human resources are exactly that: people trained to treat other people as resources, rather than people.

- my optimistic view from 10 years experience in "high-tech" (AI software and internet development)

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