It was the day before Christmas 2007. My then girlfriend & I packed up all belongings of my single life in a U-Haul and headed out for the long drive down from Minneapolis. Destination? – Columbus OH! After making the airlines plenty rich by flying between the cities, it was time for me to relocate to Ohio.
And so began a new chapter in the very happening Columbus. I joined Sogeti USA as a Consultant in January 2008 and embarked on a 5+ year journey. I must have been a complete tech newbie at the time; so I soaked it all in, delivering work on Microsoft technology stack to various clients around town. We got married & settled down, and my career grew inside Sogeti. The expectation of consultants to always be on top of the technology curve is a major enticement to stay cutting edge; learn like there is no tomorrow. And the experience one earns by architecting software solutions for clients across variety of industries and with varying levels of IT maturity – is priceless, in the life of a software craftsman.
My biggest gain in Columbus however, was the developer community involvement. Starting out with User Group participations, I soon found a group of like-minded developers to fall back on for networking & continuous learning. Along came the passion for speaking and the travelling to regional software developer conferences; the depth and breadth of knowledge to be gained from fellow developers from varied backgrounds is extraordinary. Even now, as we run User Groups or organize big conferences with relative ease, the committment of the developer community in Columbus amazes me. This is the reason why, even after moving out to PA last year for wife’s job, I am still involved with the developer community in OH and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future.
The two last years in Sogeti have been super interesting. We created a national group focused on MSFT Mobility, in particular app development for Windows Phone & Windows 8 platforms. I had the pleasure of leading the group, and in the process, got to work with some of the sharpest developers/designers I have known; together we churned out many internal/LOB/B2C apps with a whole lot more in the works this year. And while I am reminiscing, let me be open to mention my present client – Safelite Autoglass. This is possibly the best MSFT-tech based shop I have worked at, with a superb understanding manager and a genuinely awesome team of developers. I have learnt much and had a whole lot fun. Relaxed environment with cutting-edge work – isn’t that what we all seek?
But as they say, change is what is continuous. My alternate weeks of travel from PA is taking a toll and I lose precious time on the road every week. And as fun as it is to be in consulting, the desire for solutions work often means piling on more on our already-full work plates. I have often desired to work for a pure software products company to have a taste of what it is like on the other side, and some developments recently may have clicked to provide that opportunity. Sadly, that means it is the end of the road for me in Sogeti after 5+ years. There is no love lost and I step out with cautiousness. I wish my talented colleagues at Sogeti all the very best, specially in the mobility front. If our hectic transitioning is any indication, excellent leadership will ensure our continued success.
Now, that brings us to the next chapter in my life. I am very very excited to join the Telerik team next week. My long term adoration of Telerik as a company, its excellent control suites and unwavering support for the developer community provided the zeal when an opportunity opened up in the Hudson OH based Services division. Several interviews and a day spent with the energetic Telerik team made me firmly believe that this was a great fit. Thankfully, folks at the helm agreed – the simply excellent Steve Smith & Michelle Smith. My immediate partner in crime – the distinguished Chris Woodruff. Actually I owe a huge thank you to Woody for making the connections, starting way back in Codemash this year. Networking and putting in your dues in our software community truly pays dividends.
My immediate goals – focus on enterprise/developer training & evangelism for the Devtools division; but in time, I am sure we will end up touching just about everything in the Telerik stack. My passion for the XAML stack should come handy with Telerik’s generous offerings in the DevCraft space; but I am eager to dip my feet into other technology areas like cross-platform mobile, CMS, productivity & testing. My developer community involvement gets added boost; just might be more easy to spot in bright green Telerik shirts at conferences. In short, I am super excited to start working in a position that demands passion for latest technology and join the impressive Telerik team studded with rockstars. Using or considering Telerik products and have questions? – let’s bring it on.