One edtech company that lost a lot of people who moved to start another startup is a multi billion media darling now.

Another one also became a unicorn last week.

One fintech startup where people got laid off, then I saw almost everyone I knew leaving, is now a unicorn.

A product suite I worked on (and that lost almost everyone who worked on it over the years) is now valued at 100s of millions after multiple pivots and company restructures.

A ride hailing unicorn that lost 1/3rd of their employees did not see any impact in their metrics, though valuation has remained the same.

Most people who stay back in a startup losing employees find it easy to crib and look for confirmation bias about their company failing because of people leaving. They overestimate the impact of people leaving as well as their own impact on their company’s success. I have seen so many waves of people coming and going at the places I have worked at + heard about in other companies. Yes, in the short term the morale is affected. During this war time period, the CEO has to take charge and rally the troops. Unless and until the CEO loses motivation, it is never game over for the company contrary to what naysayers want to believe.

Disclaimer: This does not mean we underpay people or not respect them though. I think experienced people in a company who have helped the company grow should be paid a premium. A lot of companies end up paying much more to backfill a position. Retaining the employee who left would have been a much better decision: both in terms of economics as well as employee morale. I just find social media to be extreme when it comes to these situations. X startup is dead because their CTO left. Y startup is dead because they lost 3 people in senior management. This is seldom true.

(I had written this as a thread sometime back. So the timeline might be a bit off.)