Larry Osterman - What's the secret to succeeding at one company for 20 years?

Sign in to queue

Description

How do you succeed as a software developer for 20 years? Especially one working at a single company like Microsoft?

He tells an interesting story about when his boss yelled at him for trying to pass the buck.

Later in the video, he talks about what his first office was (back then Microsoft's headquarters wasn't in Redmond).

Microsoft was about 600 people back when he started (it's about 57,000 today).

Oh, and hear about his college interview: Steve Ballmer interviewed him. He called Ballmer a "total idiot" in the interview. He still got the job.

How many people can say they called Steve Ballmer an idiot and still got a job offer at Microsoft? (Ballmer back then was Vice President of HR, today he's CEO).

Embed

Download

Download this episode

The Discussion

  • User profile image
    Manip
    Did you upload the wrong video?
  • User profile image
    scobleizer
    Yeah, I messed it up. I fixed it.
  • User profile image
    Rossj

     Larry's videos are so interesting, can we have a Larry Channel just chock full of Larry talking about stuff?

     And I *LOVE* the way he swears ..... by gum. Smiley
  • User profile image
    AT
    Channel9 Website wrote:
    Microsoft was about 600 people back when he started (it's about 57,000 times today).


    Using calc.exe  600 * 57000 = 34,200,000

    Pretty impressive headcount for one Corp. Wink
  • User profile image
    scobleizer
    Darn, who did this post today? Thanks, fixed it.
  • User profile image
    AT
    scobleizer wrote:
    Darn, who did this post today? Thanks, fixed it.



    Wink Looks like very early anoucement ? Not yet public information about new 30.000.000 hires ??

    Now I understand why Moon Gals from JobsBlog are busy Wink
  • User profile image
    Greater Monster
    scobleizer wrote:
    Darn, who did this post today? Thanks, fixed it.


    Hah, never put a mathematical challenge in front of a geek crowd. One mistake and it's tar and feathers Big Smile But those are just virtual and come of with a bit of virtual Woolite Wink
  • User profile image
    Greater Monster
    scobleizer wrote:
    Yeah, I messed it up. I fixed it.


    Still got your job? Wink
  • User profile image
    rasx
    Larry keeps it real. I'm liking it. We need more people like him---especially in IT shops for entertainment companies.
  • User profile image
    Charles
    Beer28 wrote:
    can you guys just hide at microsoft?

    Like do your work in a few minutes and spend the rest of the week at the bowling alley or playing video games?

    Is microsoft big enough where nobody would find out if you kept up with the meetings and your work was marginal enough to get by?

    Does anybody physically check to see if you're actually there?




    The answer to all three questions is No.

    Charles
  • User profile image
    Charles
    Rossj wrote:

     Larry's videos are so interesting, can we have a Larry Channel just chock full of Larry talking about stuff?

     And I *LOVE* the way he swears ..... by gum. Smiley


    The Larry Channel. I love it.


    Charles
  • User profile image
    AT
    Charles wrote:
    Beer28 wrote: can you .... ?

    Like do ... ?

    Is microsoft ...?

    Does anybody ... ?




    The answer to all three questions is No.


    If 1+1+1+1 == 3 then No == Yes ? Wink
  • User profile image
    Charles
    Smiley

    I took the liberty to combine question 1 and 4, resulting in three distinct questions.


    Charles
  • User profile image
    ZippyV
    Can we get a reaction from Steve B?
  • User profile image
    Larry​Osterman
    ZippyV wrote:
    Can we get a reaction from Steve B?


    I suspect he doesn't remember any more.  Although I did ask him about it about a year or so later.

    Please note: I did NOT and DO not believe that SteveB is a total idiot.  He's anything but.  He may have been incorrect in this case, but he's not an idiot.  That part was what they call hyperbole Smiley

    Steve's really the only really senior exec that knows me by name, to be honest - Bill has no clue who I am, for example.  But Steve and I say hi to each other when we see each other.
  • User profile image
    Rossj
    LarryOsterman wrote:

    Steve's really the only really senior exec that knows me by name, to be honest - Bill has no clue who I am, for example.  But Steve and I say hi to each other when we see each other.


    Well let's hope Bill watches these videos because he *should* know who you are Smiley.  I expect the Larry Channel to be imminent. 

    Larry, ever considered podcasting?
  • User profile image
    cbrousseau

    In this video, Larry mentioned "The 12 Great Principles" of working for Microsoft. where could I find such a list?

    I think everybody agree. Larry is a really fascinating guy to listen to...

    Hope to see more in the future.

     

  • User profile image
    Larry​Osterman
    cbrousseau wrote:

    In this video, Larry mentioned "The 12 Great Principles" of working for Microsoft. where could I find such a list?

    I think everybody agree. Larry is a really fascinating guy to listen to...

    Hope to see more in the future.

     


    They're not "principals" they're "core competencies".  Eseentially the competencies are an internal tool that can be used to help with your career growth (oh, and it turns out that 12's not the right number).  But the core competencies are things that represent the attributes behaviors of successful Microsoft employees. 

    It's a tool, nothing more, and nothing particularly exciting Smiley

Comments closed

Comments have been closed since this content was published more than 30 days ago, but if you'd like to send us feedback you can Contact Us.