Saturday, May 12, 2007

Bauer's Second Law

In reading From Airline Reservations to Sonic the Hedgehog, A History Of the Software Industry, I came across a wonderful axiom.

Bauer's Second Law states that:

Talent migrates from areas of well defined and stratified responsibility to areas of expanding activity at a rate proporational to the rate of expansion. Or, stated more simply, talent goes where the action is.
Today, the valley is witnessing an amazing migration of talent from Yahoo!, eBay, AOL, MSN, and other leading web properties to start-ups. The start-up economy is benefiting from Bauer's Second Law in action. The best and brightest Directors and VPs are leaving large cap web companies at a rate proportional to the resurgence of the start-up landscape.
A few years ago, with low rates of start-up expansion, start-ups struggled to attract large company talent. Today, those days are a memory and incredible teams are coming together very early in a company's life cycle. Bauer's axiom helps make sense of the trend and the key driver for the migration of talent towards high-growth vehicles.

1 comment:

  1. I think is because the landscape inside the company that one was on the leading edge changes from being action based and a "get it done" attitude, to one that is over managed and stifling. Myself having just left MSFT after 10 years to go work for a small startup.