First, let’s talk about one of the more important things that people want to know… Will I be wearing my White Sport Coat again this year? The answer is “absolutely”. My persona is now branded as the guy at DAC in the white jacket. Now for more serious things like the great DAC/Cadence/Denali party, although I will save what my sources tell me to the end of this column.
This is the first year in many years that I do not have a really good feel for how DAC will turn out. I have nailed it fairly spot on in years past, but the chatter is mixed and the optimism tired. People have been seeing (more like hearing but that word wont exactly fit here) this constant light at the end of the tunnel, and while we most of us feel like we are getting closer to the light, and while it is clear that the semi conductor side is kickin butt (professional term) it is still unclear how EDA will fare. Most of the companies I talk to are doing considerably better, hiring is improving (or should I say at least their attempt to hire), still things seem uncertain, and everyone is being optimistically cautious.
I know that I for one am very excited about DAC this year, as I have been asked to serve on a DAC Pavilion Monday morning at 11:30 as an EDA industry expert on Careers. I hope many of you will attend, and scream and yell “we love you Mark” after each statement I make. (Well at least applaud loudly).
I can tell you that so far this year, I have more appointments booked than I expected, with many of the companies telling me they will give me some job specs (reqs) at DAC. I have talked to several companies that I have not worked with before that want to meet with me. This is encouraging, and needless to say, music to my ears. I truly believe I will leave DAC this year with more job requisitions than I have in previous years.
DAC is not a great place to actually talk to companies about jobs because after a week of DAC, and a few days of rest, the odds are fairly strong that no one will remember you. That does not mean you should waste your opportunity to find possibilities. The best thing you can do is walk DAC, collect some cards, find out whom is doing what, and where you might fit. You can then take your notes, and take some time to research those companies. I cannot tell you how many clients new and old call me after DAC to ask me about the companies they saw there. Many times I have relationships with those companies and can help get their resumes to the right people. Other times I do not, but all the time I can help and guide them how to proceed. I invite anyone with any questions to feel free to call me for advice; after all it is free (one of the few things left that is anymore). I also get the most calls post DAC asking me about the show and what new opportunities were presented to me.
DAC is and always has been the single most important week for our industry. It is a time when we get to talk face to face with peers and associates; discuss needs and prospects, personal realizations or concerns. It is a time to share stories about whose doing what, and our forecasts for the coming quarters. I usually have meetings every 30 minutes for all 3 days and yet, I still somehow find time to meet the companies I could not schedule, or did not know. It is a great chance to get a feel for what is going on in EDA. As a lead recruiter in EDA it helps me to give better insight when writing this column, or when talking to my candidates and clients. So talk to me when you see me at DAC. I will be the guy in the WHITE SPORTCOAT, (not sure yet about a tie).
As for the Denali party, my sources tell me this is going to be one to remember. After all they do have a new name, “Cadence” and are also partnering with DAC this year, so expect some real excitement. It is the best place to meet half drunk executives, (actually everyone) and REALLY learn the inside of what is going on. (It is much easier to get the real scoop when you’re drinking. I am only pretending to drink those 4 or 5 cocktails (and if you believe that, I have some old EDA wallpaper stock to sell you). Hope to see you at DAC and perhaps have a fake cocktail at the party together. Just be prepared to dish out the goodies, and PLEASE do not spill red wine on my WHITE SPORTCOAT!