No More Retiring At 30

The stock-option culture is over. It's back to getting rich the old-fashioned way

The first time I realized that stock options were more than just a nice perk--that they had created a culture of their own, different in unexpected ways from the one in which most of us live--came about a year after I went to work for Microsoft in the mid-1990s. One of the software jockeys I worked with announced he was going to "retire." He had joined the company straight out of college and had been there seven or eight years. He was 30 years old. Why retire? He explained, "Well, as you know, I just got married, and we want to...

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