What happened at the very end
[ This is part two of four. You might want to start at part one. ]
I put in my notice on May 2nd for a traditional two week period. That should have resulted in my last day being May 13th. A bunch of people set up farewell lunches and other things like this, and then... I didn't leave on the 13th. The story behind what happened has not propagated well, so here it is, for anyone who still cares.
Halfway through those two weeks, I discovered just how badly I had been getting screwed in terms of compensation. I had just cashed out all of my options which had vested and were above water, and it was worth some amount of money. I mentioned that amount while talking with some friends and they looked at me funny. I said, what, was that a lot? I found out that no, that was nothing at all, especially for an initial grant which was fully vested after four years.
So that got us talking about salaries. I mentioned how much I made, and my level. Again, amazement from other people. According to them, I was probably $30K off from the top of that level. I found that astonishing, but in checking with other people at that same level, I realized that yes, I was making at least 10% less than them for the "same job". I was doing far more and doing it far better than most, so that was the ultimate insult.
At that point I decided to go on the warpath. It was no longer time to go away quietly. I started making noise, and a lot of it. This is probably where a bunch of my readers started following me. I posted a postmortem for the kernel testing work I had been doing, where they were, are, and probably still aren't getting anything useful done.
I decided to escalate to someone several levels up, but that person was out of town on family business. So now, with the end approaching, I had been hearing "it's not final until you walk out", so I took them up on that offer and had them push it back a week to May 20th. Then I got an appointment booked to talk to this individual first thing Monday morning, May 16th.
That gave me a weekend to figure out a strategy for how to proceed, and I made some plans. Monday morning arrived, and I put them in motion. To be continued in the next post.
June 21, 2011: This post has an update.