Finally I can freely work in my beloved profession again without fear of a non-compete demand letter. What a long year! My family celebrated this past weekend with margaritas and a lovely dinner at an outdoor Mexican restaurant. We even brought our little fur bundle of Joy with us for nibbles of steak.

Joy nibble of Steak

Non-Compete: Need to Know

For those of you that think non-compete is not enforceable, that is not true. Check your state laws. In Florida, non-compete is enforced for up to two years in areas where the employer does business. The bigger the employer, the more areas of business covered. I learned the hard way. In May 2013, I left Tableau abruptly because of my one year Microsoft non-compete. That experience was a turning point in my career. Longtime readers may recall that is when I started my own company. It was a life goal…but the timing was unexpected.

Be sure to read and understand all clauses in employment agreements. Several talented people in my network had to wait out non-competes. Non-compete agreements apply to nearly one-fifth of US workers including a large number of low-wage workers. One or two years on the sidelines is a long time to wait – especially in a cloudy tech world with frequent updates.

Last year the US government was looking into unnecessary non-compete agreements and other anticompetitive practices. The White House Fact Sheet article from October 25, 2016 is an excellent read on that topic. Like many other issues today that are not in the best interest of citizens, campaign donations from big firms will likely prevent changes to non-compete laws.

White House Non-Compete

FAQ: Compare Articles

Even though I am literally an expert on Microsoft topics, please don’t contact me to update my public Microsoft compare content. I know it is extremely popular.

Although I freely share quite a bit of market intelligence with the analytics community, I will not provide Microsoft compare information freely again. I will only consider limited, paid, private Microsoft competitive intelligence engagements. Note my non-disclosure agreements will always be honored regardless of time.

After my last experience with Microsoft, I stopped writing about them altogether. I do still help my friends in the Microsoft ecosystem from time to time. I also continue to support PASS, a wonderful data and analytics global community of over 250,000 like-minded professionals.


At some point, I will share my lessons learned to help other people who get bullied. My challenges have been an opportunity for me to grow stronger, better understand diverse cultures, get involved in different networks, expand my business, and learn many more analytics technologies …often better technologies than the ones I knew before.

Adversity is preparation for greatness.

I don’t know what exciting doors might open now that my Microsoft door has closed. To all my friends, followers and clients that have stood by me through the good years and the rough years. THANK YOU.