London: Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has said that if the social networking website had not worked out he would have probably landed at Microsoft.
“I probably would have taken an engineering job...(and) always had a lot of respect for Microsoft,” he told Paul Graham, a co-founder of the tech venture capital fun Y Combinator, during a 45-minute interview before an audience of 1,700 at Stanford’s Memorial Hall. “A lot of people from Harvard went to work there,” the 28-year-old added.
The social networking mogul opened up about his startup experience and opined on the problems with entrepreneurs these days, at the annual conference for entrepreneurs and computer hackers at Stanford University held on Saturday, the Daily Mail reported.
Though Facebook’s lagging stock performance has been the topic of discussion, Zuckerberg instead shared tales of his early years at Harvard, his path to becoming one of the most powerful figures in Silicon Valley and even imagined what he would have done if things had turned out differently.
Even though Facebook is one of the most visited pages on the web, employs nearly 4,000 people and boasts 1 billion users worldwide, the founder divulged that he most likely would have made his way to Seattle if his idea had flopped.
Zuckerberg provided his account of his school days and was the first to admit he wasn’t the model student. Contrary to what one might expect, Zuckerberg was actually a psychology major at the Ivy League university and enjoyed the study of classical languages instead of computer science or business. But despite his best intentions, he rarely attended class and instead spent his time computer programming.
“My life is a long history of people thinking I would drop out of school long before I did,” Zuckerberg told the audience. He said his parents came to the realisation pretty early on that though he enrolled at Harvard in 2002, he was unlikely to stay put, much like the story of Microsoft founder Bill Gates, who dropped out of Harvard in 1975 to start the computer company.
“I started building Facebook because I wanted it at college, which is one of the ironies, since I then left college,” he said. As Zuckerberg worked away at the idea for a revolutionary social network in college, the website grew in popularity but in retrospect Zuckerberg said the pace was actually slow compared to today’s standards. “Facebook did grow quickly but it took a year for us to get a million users,” he said.
He also admitted that even he wasn’t sure that Facebook would be his golden ticket.