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TL;DR if a person doesn't have the technical background to judge someones skills, which in a lot of cases they don't otherwise they wouldn't be hiring you, it's very hard for a person to know whether someone is good at what he does or just full of shit.

What you're saying is a lot of ideologically great stuff but that's a bit disconnected from how the real world of high growth tech works.

The reality is that people can talk about vision and passion all they want but the US is a place where everything is a sales transaction. In a place where everything is a business transaction whoever can sell their work best wins and whoever can make an impression on perceived impact always wins over the people that think their impact will eventually be recognized. In fact listening to advice like that is what gave me a quick severance package despite being one of the most impactful engineers in the company at the time.

In one place I improved their entire performance by 38% and saved them a couple millions on licensing fees. The 38% was claimed by my manager the very same day i got my severance package even though I had to make a gif to convince them of the impact and defied them by fixing this issue, which was deemed a failed project at the time.

Most managers in the SV late startups are early employees that kept getting promoted and at some point were sent to Berkeley for a weekend management certificate. Very few of them stop and think about the things that they do, how they would want to be treated themselves and what they can do to improve transparency of performance.

I was recently responsible for the hire of someone I initially intended as my replacement as an CTO for hire/architect. I got blinded by the resume and the vetting procedure/recruiter and his ability to smooth talk about things he knows nothing about. It didn't take me long to realize he was useless, but the problem was that the guy spending the money actually believed it for 6 months and poured money into it. He massively regretted it. I basically had to let him ruin a bunch of stuff, waiting in the background to clean up after him.

Bottom line is he was a better politician that he was an engineer. And for most people it doesn't matter.




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