[A picture of private offices at Fog Creek Software] Alert! This ancient trifle retrieved from the Joel on Software archive is well-past its expiration date. Proceed with care.

Joel on Software

New year's resolution: get a better job!

by Joel Spolsky
Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Here are three ideas for getting a better job next year.

1. Apply for the Fog Creek Software Management Training Program in New York. We have one opening right now. In addition to paying your salary, Fog Creek pays your tuition and reimburses all educational expenses for a Masters degree in technology management. Here's what Sumana Harihareswara ('08) says:

“Before I came to Fog Creek, I couldn't tell where my odd collection of aptitudes fit in. I'm extroverted and geeky, but I didn't code and didn't know any of That Business Stuff. My work experience showed that I'd dabbled in tech writing, customer service, QA, marketing, and I don't know what-all. Then I visited New York City for the first time, and while I was away, that blogger Joel Spolsky posted about the new Fog Creek Software Management Training Program. I woke up in the middle of the night the day after I read about it, knowing I had to apply. I couldn't believe that I got called back, then interviewed, then hired -- and it all happened in just a few weeks!

“I've been here almost a year now. It can be tough, working and learning all day and going to class at night, but I get out of it what I put into it. The program's like a mirror, showing me my strengths and my weaknesses both. No matter what I do here -- learning FogBugz to do sales, learning SQL Server to do customer support, or even reconciling the credit card bill -- I feel empowered in a way I've never felt at another workplace. Once I'm done with my Fog Creek training and my degree from Columbia, I'll be a superlatively hireable package.”

2. Apply for one of the great jobs listed on the Jobs Board. Work on robots that perform minimally invasive surgery, get the BBC to work on mobile phones, make virtual worlds for The Electric Sheep Company, get teachers the resources they need at DonorsChoose.org, or any number of things that are probably a lot more interesting than what you're doing right now.

3. If you have a great job at a cool, high-Joel Test-scoring company, consider hiring some of the 568,000 job seekers looking for a new gig on the jobs board. I'll make it easy for you: use the coupon code BETTERJOBS-0-070 and get 200 dollars off a job listing, good this year only [Update: this coupon is no longer valid]. If you know of companies that you think would be good fits for Joel on Software readers, please pass this coupon on to them. If you know of companies that are noisy, fluorescent, cubicle farms working 90 hour weeks, where the CTO refuses to use source code control because he's afraid people will blame him for the horrible code he writes, please don't tell them about this offer.


Have you been wondering about Distributed Version Control? It has been a huge productivity boon for us, so I wrote Hg Init, a Mercurial tutorial—check it out!

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