Starbucks and Programmers
I’m not a Starbucks regular. I go there once in a while. Many years ago, when I went there for the first time and asked for a small cup of coffee, the girl behind the counter said, “So you want a tall coffee?”. Then she explained that tall was the smallest size they had. I’m sure some smart marketing person suggested that calling a cup “tall” is better than “small”. It makes a customer appreciate the value of the purchased product. It’s better to buy something tall than something small for the same amount of money. Devaluation of sizes in action.
When I receive a resume from a 23-year old senior software developer from overseas, I think of that tall cup at Starbucks. They want me to appreciate the deal – I’ll be getting not just a software developer, but a senior one for the same price. Being still in the Thanksgiving state of mind, I’m thankful that the USA is better in this regard too. I can’t recall seeing any American college graduate calling himself a senior software developer, and rightly so. Even if a 23-year old has a BS in Computer Science from MIT or Stanford, he’s are not a senior software developer. He has better chances to become one than a graduate of a local community college, that’s for sure. But let’s not confuse the ability to produce 20 if-statements per minute with being a well rounded software developer with 5 years of the real-world experience.
Every time when I visit Starbucks I ask for a small coffee pretending that I don’t know that it’s called tall. For some reason I feel better this way. OK, gotta run. Let me put on my Hugo Boss jacket of the XL size and go to work. Well, I’m not really that big, but XL is makes me feel a large man. What’s your size?