Why Randi Zuckerberg Left Silicon Valley

After spending six year’s at her brother’s Silicon Valley-based company Facebook, Randi Zuckerberg is back in the New York City area, near where she grew up. In an Inc. video, Zuckerberg describes her time in Silicon Valley and why she decided it was time to move on.

“It’s so easy to catch the entrepreneurial bug when you are surrounded by so many entrepreneurs,” says Zuckerberg. “I worked at Facebook for about 6 years, which in Silicon Valley startup world, it’s like dog years.  I just hit a moment where I got so excited about what was going on in…media and technology.”

She continues, “I felt like you know what, I want to be involved in this revolution. I love Facebook, but I don’t want to only use Facebook for the rest of my career.”

After Zuckerberg had her first child, she felt it was time to commit to something new.

“This was my time to start my own thing but I didn’t even know what my own thing was going to be,” says Zuckerberg. “I just knew that there was a lot that I wanted to do on my own.  But I also knew that I was never gonna be ‘Randi Zuckerberg, her own thing’ as long as I worked there.”

Zuckerberg also describes a cultural phenomenon she saw in Silicon Valley that she found particularly frustrating.

Being Taken Seriously in Silicon Valley

“With my male colleagues it was cool if they were DJ-ing, or hiking, or going skiing on the weekends.  As a woman I felt like it was almost kind of like ‘well we’ve let you into the boys club to work here so we need nothing else to take your focus away,” says Zuckerberg.

“I had kind of tried to smoosh down for too many years in order to be taken seriously in Silicon Valley,” continues Zuckerberg. “Suddenly I thought, ‘Screw that. Life is way too short to shelve what makes you happy just to please a few people who will probably never be pleased by you anyway.'”

In 2013, she launched Zuckerberg Media, a marketing firm and production company. Since then, she authored two books, Dot Complicated, a guide to managing online life, and Dot, an illustrated children’s book. She has a SiriusXM Business Radio show, she’s been shooting a new reality series on the Oxygen Network called Create Your Day Job, and she starred in the Broadway show Rock of Ages.

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