Patrick McKenzie
@patio11 1 year, 1 month ago 443 views

If an employer is willing to be abusive to you prior to hiring you, when you have maximum leverage and they are maximally incentivized to play nice, I think that gives you *extremely actionable* signal as to how they'll treat you when you're working there and dependent on them.

For candidates: evaluate prospective employers accordingly.

For startups employing e.g. engineers: given that your candidates should evaluate you accordingly, be *extra special* careful to operate like professionals with regards to e.g. interviewing, offers, and negotiation.
"Can you be more explicit about 'abusive' here?"

Not without violating a confidence, but as someone who has been on hiring side of table and is a capitalist, there are *clearly* things you could do which would be "sharp operating, but we're all sharp operators" in some contexts.
Hiring employees is often not one of those contexts. The nature of the relationship, the asymmetry in power, and the social contract strongly counsel you to be a lot better there than you are minimally required by law / contract.
A thing which aesthetically frustrates me is that a lot of the things I've heard companies do here serve *no legitimate business purpose.* In some cases it's getting tens of dollars of advantage. TENS! On an engineering candidate!
Imagine the primal scream of a capitalist:

"WHY ARE YOU POISONING THE WELL FOR EVERYONE HIRING ENGINEERS OVER TENS OF DOLLARS. DO YOU THINK THAT WILL BE IN YOUR S-1 AS A SOURCE OF COMPETITIVE STRENGTH. DOES THIS REFLECT YOUR MANAGERIAL COMPETENCE WITH RESPECT TO YOUR AGENTS."

More from Patrick McKenzie

So the cryptocurrency industry has basically two products, one which is relatively benign and doesn't have product market fit, and one which is malignant and does. The industry has a weird superposition of understanding this fact and (strategically?) not understanding it.


The benign product is sovereign programmable money, which is historically a niche interest of folks with a relatively clustered set of beliefs about the state, the literary merit of Snow Crash, and the utility of gold to the modern economy.

This product has narrow appeal and, accordingly, is worth about as much as everything else on a 486 sitting in someone's basement is worth.

The other product is investment scams, which have approximately the best product market fit of anything produced by humans. In no age, in no country, in no city, at no level of sophistication do people consistently say "Actually I would prefer not to get money for nothing."

This product needs the exchanges like they need oxygen, because the value of it is directly tied to having payment rails to move real currency into the ecosystem and some jurisdictional and regulatory legerdemain to stay one step ahead of the banhammer.

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