Mark Santaniello, President and Jedi Knight

I’ve just been promoted to “Senior Software Engineer,” which I’m happy about. My previous title of “Software Engineer II” was comparatively unimpressive.

Job titles are a curious thing. About 99% of the time, nobody knows your job title, nor do they care. For the other 1%, it means very little unless someone is familiar with your company.

It would be cool if I could just pick any old job title I wanted, subject to some oversight for obscenity, etc. Sort of like vanity plates. That would be just about as useful as the current, totally opaque system.

The next rung on my career ladder is likely “Member of Technical Staff.” My employer considers this a pretty high rank, typically achieved after 7+ years on the job. I know of other companies where “Member of Technical Staff” is given to college-hires and quite literally means you are a member of the technical staff. In other words, not the janitor or receptionist.

Here’s a plan: get hired by the latter company and then switch to mine.

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3 Responses to “Mark Santaniello, President and Jedi Knight”


  1. 1 Bheeshmar June 10, 2005 at 6:17 am

    You’re still a padawan to me, buddy. 🙂

  2. 2 Jonathan Gilbert April 27, 2006 at 12:45 pm

    I’ve heard that at Intel, you do get to pick your own title. If I worked for them, I think I might go for “Master Adept”. Or would have, before discovering that some religion (was it Mormonism? or Scientology maybe..) has almost exactly the same title, just with the words in the opposite order. 😦

  3. 3 Mark April 29, 2006 at 12:11 pm

    Jonathan,

    It’s funny, because at AMD we have a similar deal. The job title I mentioned in my blog entry is more of an “official human-resources” type thing. It revolves primarily around degrees earned and years of service (and to a surprising extent, degree to which you bitch at your management to promote you).

    But we also have the ability to put damn near anything we want on our business cards, which sounds similar to the Intel policy.

    -Mark


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