I’ve been back at EA a few weeks now, working with many of my old co-workers. Nearly all of them never left EA. When I got laid off in late 2010, they stayed behind, learned some new technology, helped make some new games, and stayed the course at EA.
I never really thought about it until recently but these people continued to get promotions, raises, bonuses, stock awards, and various other perks that you get when you stay at a full-time job. In contrast, I haven’t received a promotion since late 2006 or so. I guess that’s not hard to believe when I haven’t worked at a single job for more than nine months since 2010. In the last seven years, I think I’ve only gotten one bonus and that was at PopCap in 2012 when I got the company-wide quarterly bonus.
The trade-off is that I received a wide breadth of experience. I’ve had the chance to work with many different companies and on different platforms, from tablets to consoles. I’ve worked on games targeted to women over the age of 30 to games made for males ages 17 to 34.
It definitely fills my resume with a variety of experience but there’s no doubt that from a pure financial point of view, I am a less wealthier person for not having stayed in one place, like my co-workers did. I do not lament my nomadic ways though. I’ve met a lot of great people and in the end, I’m still able to put Hamburger Helper on the table every night.