It’s not uncommon for people to turn to the internet for advice in choosing jobs. An engineer from the US, who had job offers from Uber and Zenefits, did exactly that. He posted a thread entitled “What is the best way to start my career: Uber or Zenefits?” on Quora, a popular discussion forum. Things did not quite go as planned when the CEO of Zenefits happened to come across his post and withdrew his job offer with a post.
The engineer in question had job offers from Uber and Zenefits, both considered to be desirable startups to work for. His post began with a summary of the pros and cons of working at both companies. He felt that Uber had great people, a great product, and would be a solid brand to have on his resume when he applied to companies like Google and Apple, which he stated was where he wanted to eventually end up. He however felt that Uber, being a hot young startup with tons of qualified applicants, didn’t want his services enough, seeing how they’d not let him negotiate on his salary.
He felt that Zenefits, a cloud HR solutions startup, too had a great team who he’d enjoyed talking to during the interview process. Being a smaller company than Uber, he felt that the upper management there was more accessible and he’d be able to make a bigger impact working there as compared to working at Uber. He also felt that he’d be more valued as an employee there. His only grouse with the company was that it wasn’t a buzzword like Uber, which would be a disadvantage when he applied to companies like Google and Apple.
This did not sit well with the Zenefits CEO Parker Conrad, who was Quora user and happened to come across the thread. He publicly withdrew the offer with the comment posted above.
This post by the CEO, which has since been deleted, has been widely criticised on Quora since. Most Quora users found the questions and concerned justified, and the CEO’s response has been called “immature” amongst other things.
While the original poster might take solace in the fact that most people now believe that the Zenefits CEO making his choice for him was probably for the best, it still raises the question of anonymity on the internet. When you post about job choices, it’s best to be mindful that people from the concerned company – including the CEO – could be watching.