Think Microsoft, if Google wants a peek at its future

No doubt it was a platinum opportunity, one that Sheryl Sandberg could not turn down. But the departure of a highly-regarded Googler to become Facebook's chief operating officer is more than just another Silicon Valley tale of lighting out for greener pastures.Sandberg may be the headliner, but about one-third of the company's first 500 employees […]

No doubt it was a platinum opportunity, one that Sheryl Sandberg could not turn down. But the departure of a highly-regarded Googler to become Facebook's chief operating officer is more than just another Silicon Valley tale of lighting out for greener pastures.

Sandberg may be the headliner, but about one-third of the company's first 500 employees have already left Google. Meanwhile you've got roughly 2000 people pre-IPO veterans now waiting out the clock before their shares vest. I don't care how delish you find the free food in the corporate cafeteria. There's potential here for major employee churn on the horizon.

Google's about to become the story,” says a senior industry executive familiar with both companies. Just as Microsoft went through a period of churn, this person believes Google's turn is next. "A lot of people over there have way more money than know what to do with" thanks to stock option cashed in over the years."

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Google, Microsoft, Facebook