Thank you for writing this, and for representing startups’ little guy. I’ve worked in startups and around tech since ’08, and everything you’ve said resonates with me. I’ve increasingly opted for cash over equity. When you start with the basic statistical likelihood that most startups will fail, and then heap on top the increasing trend of far-off liquidity events, why would I ever bother gambling my time & freedom of movement? And for startup employee, the resource leveraged really is *time*. Sadly, unlike money, time can never be recouped. Looking at it from this perspective, there’s actually much more on the line for the employee than there is for the investor, or even the founders.
That said, I still love the thrill of building a startup from the ground-up, and having that shared sense of ownership. Would love to see the industry model evolve in a more equitable fashion. Here’s to hoping pieces like this help bring about that change. Cheers.