I was talking to a friend recently regarding his next job switch.

[I know a lot of my threads/posts start like this. As a professional advice giver and connoisseur of mental models, a lot of my time goes in helping friends think through various decisions]

So yeah, back to the story.

My friend had 2 choices: Two fast growing startups surfing big waves, one with not such great culture, with a super demanding CEO, but with a manager he had worked with in the past, and another at an arguably better company when it comes to culture and the industry it is in, but in an unknown team, with an unknown manager.

My friend chose to go with the known manager.

His point: Every single person this manager had managed in the past went on to lead product teams themselves/ had a supercharged career trajectory. So he was going to optimize on the manager over everything else. Because he was hoping that he would be the next product leader to be groomed by this manager.

We talk about people leaving companies due to bad managers. But people don’t talk enough about how having a reputation of building careers helps managers attract great employees.

This is the same reason whyI emphasized on the growth the last person had in the role when I posted about an open position in my company. I, as a manager, might not have the highest budget. The machinery might not always work in my favor. What I want, and can control at some level, is to be this manager who can provide you with a faster learning/ growth compared to the industry average.