I’m late with this post. I’ve been busy! Finishing this post has been tougher than I imagined it would be.
Starting a new job is tough enough, adding in two visits to New York, one to Toronto and getting ready for HTML5 Live have made it even tougher. I think I’m through the toughest part of the transition now, so here I am, writing like a madman.
Anyway, I promised to talk a little bit about my new job. I won’t go into exhaustive detail, but I know some of you are interested, so I might as well get it out of the way now, before it doesn’t feel like a “new” job any more.
As I mentioned previously, I’ve moved over to Sapient Global Markets. My title is Senior Specialist, Platform.
As for what I’m doing, my job splits into three basic components- thought leadership, building a world class front end engineering team and bringing cutting edge solutions to clients.
- Thought leadership. I’m not a huge fan of the phrase, but “writing and talking about emerging technology” doesn’t fit as well in a job description. I’ve already been doing this as much as possible. The difference with my new role is that it’s written into my job description and mandated from up on high. So, now I’ve got scheduled time for the kind of activities (writing, speaking, open source work) that I previously had to fit in around client engagements (which rarely happened) or after hours in my “free” time. Hopefully you guys will get some benefit out of me being able to write a little bit more.
- Building a team. I’ve been instrumental in hiring and have worked developing junior staff for a few years now, so I’m pretty comfortable with this aspect of the job. The two key differences here are that I’m basically starting from scratch at my new role and I’ll be looking to build a truly global team. I’m not 100% sure what the eventually distribution will be, but I’ll be filling out slots between Boston, India and potentially a couple of other spots around the world. Making sure a team with that sort of geographical spread feel like a “team” will present a new wrinkle.
Another clear challenge is cultivating front end engineering talent in India. Traditionally, people doing front end work there are junior and are doing so as a steppingstone on their way to writing “real” code- C# or Java. The combination of looking ahead to getting to do “real” work and the limited experience these guys possess have conspired to make it tougher than it should be to staff front end engineers in India. Hopefully I can help to change that by getting young Indian engineers excited about the web as a platform and open standards in general.
- Client Work. The interesting challenge at this job is that I’ll be working with clients who are much more conservative than some of the organizations I’ve worked with previously. Educating some of the financial services giants on the power of the open web platform and delivering work that leverages those technologies in novel, but concrete ways will be an ongoing challenge. The good news is many of the cooler open web technologies are tailor-made for markets based businesses, so I’ll be selling them on Canvas, SVG, WebSockets, etc. Should be fun.
And that’s it. That’s the new gig. It’ll keep me busy for a while, I think.