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Seattle’s Best Places to Work 2015

The Swingerators are the first thing to greet visitors to the lobby of Ivy Softworks, but they’re more than toys to the employees. The wood swings, made from old bleacher seats, would be at home in a playground, but these chain-link supports hang from beams inside the company’s Pioneer Square…

Read the original article on Seattle Met.

How I Almost Didn’t Make the Cut

Maybe you’re a bit like me. When you’re nervous, say in an interview situation, you get quiet and reserved, and guard your words carefully to ensure you don’t say the wrong thing.

Former Microsoft and Amazon executive Brian Valentine talks about his new role at Ivy Softworks

For decades, Brian Valentine led big projects at big companies. At Microsoft, where he worked from 1987 to 2006, Valentine led the Exchange, Windows XP and Windows 2000 teams.

The anti-startup: Former Amazon exec, Napster co-founder try new way to start a company

Jordan Ritter’s least-favorite part about running a startup is losing the team he put so much effort into carefully building and growing.

Interview with Bay Area Ventures

Jordan Ritter and Brian Valentine discuss the Innovation Studio on Wharton Business Radio.

Introducing Brian Valentine!

Today I’m announcing a significant addition to our leadership team – Brian Valentine! Originally a Unix & VMS programmer at Intel back in the 80s, Brian is probably best known in the software industry for building and leading some amazing teams across a truly remarkable number of products and platforms (Exchange, Windows XP & 2000, and Amazon’s eCommerce Platform, to name a few). His talent for succeeding against the impossible is surpassed only by his passion for growing people and shipping product. I’m very excited to bring him into our Innovation Studio and build great things together.

Seattle Start-Up Factory Hires Former Amazon and Microsoft Executive

Ivy Softworks is a new start-up factory that has devised what its founder says is a better way to create tech companies. Now the plan has attracted Brian Valentine, a prominent engineer and executive who worked for years at Microsoft and Amazon.

Management Mojo

“It is something to make yourself better, but it is really something when you make those around you better” – Russell Wilson, QB Seattle Seahawks

Don’t Be Afraid of Leaving that Safe Job at a Big Company

If you are fortunate enough to have spent a few years at one of those big, safe software companies (and you know who they are), you might have given a thought to whether you could try a startup. I’m here to tell you that you can do it, and it’s not as scary as you might have imagined. A new job in a smaller company, where you can do so much more and learn new technologies can be very exciting. One critical point that many big company folks don’t consider, and the one that pushed me to try a startup: there isn’t really that much risk with a startup, because you can always go back to that large boring company if it doesn’t work out.

In this blog post, I discuss some of the issues related to leaving your job, and what you might want to complete before exiting that cushy but possibly tiresome job (take a deep breath, it will be okay). Remember that the big company was a startup once, and now maybe it’s lost some of its mojo.

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