How many jobs have you quit, and did you ever regret it?

How many jobs have you quit, and did you ever regret it? –@Zeke

I’ve quit six jobs. I’ll list them but some of these you won’t have heard of: Fore Systems (I was employee #10 and they later sold for over a billion), CMU’s Center for Machine Translation, HBO, Xceed (which bought a company I started), Investcorp, (which bought a company I started), and now that I think about it, there were one or two more (usually involving companies that bought assets I had created).

I have never regretted a single one even though in some cases, much hardship resulted as I had to deal with rising expenses, declining income and net worth and even declining self-worth when I couldn’t find a replacement job or income source.

But I never regret leaving a situation where the people and circumstances are unpleasant for me. There are 100 million jobs out there. The unemployment rate for smart, ambitious people is probably 1% so if you really want a job you can get one. But most people don’t want to work for others. Most people want to do their own thing. Most people want to eat what they kill.

For better or worse, for most of the past 20 years I’ve only eaten what I’ve killed and not what I’ve been served. And sometimes it’s made me vomit. Sometimes it’s made me go to sleep hungry. But often it’s been very satisfying and at the very least, has created a lot of stories.

I’ve also been fired from several jobs but that’s another story.