The propensity of managers to screw engineers is as old as the hills.
In his great book Accidental Empires, Bob Cringely recalls how Aldus, the pioneer of desktop publishing got started when a manger and five engineers split out of a company to found a start up.
When the five engineers and the manager were to sign the incorporation documents the engineers found that the manager was getting a million shares while they were getting 27,000 shares each.
The manager was taking 90% of the company; the engineers 1% each.
The engineers refused to sign until the manager doubled their holdings.
One of the engineers recalled: “We came to see Paul (Paul Brainerd – the manager) as the demanding father who could never be pleased. Years later you wonder how you let yourself get so jerked around over what, in retrospect, seems to be so unimportant. Why did I care so much?”Tags: Accidental Empires, incorporation documents, pioneer, propensity, retrospect