Archive for the ‘Me, elsewhere on the Web’ Category
Most of the time when I am behind the microphone, I an the interviewer. It is my job to pronounce the guest’s name correctly, ask interesting questions, and try not to say “Ummm…”. (It’s harder than it sounds) Back in May though, I was the guest on a podcast produced by Clark Buckner of Technology Advice. It’s fun only having to worry about not saying “Ummm…” :)
Until next time,
I <3 |<
I now work with Pantheon as their first full-time Developer Advocate.
First, no, it’s not another job, it’s an adventure. For me, coding would be another job. I know I can do that and am pretty good at it. (although there are those that are much better at it than me) This shoves me out there in the spotlight again, a place I am most definitely uncomfortable. This time, like the last time I held a Dev Advocate role, it is with a community that doesn’t know me. (Well, a few of them do, but not many)
At the end of October, I got a call from my boss at the company I was working for. It was the usual “…we’ve decided to go in a different direction, your services are no longer needed”. It’s the corporate version of “It’s not you, it’s me…”, and it’s about as sincere. But that’s fine, we parted friends, I’ve got nothing really bad to say about them. But that left me with a problem. Not being part of the independently wealthy set, I needed a job. So I set out to find one.
- I have 3 companies on my short list that I want to work for. Every time I consider a change, the first thing I do is ping them, and like every time before, the timing just wasn’t quite right for all 3 of them.
- I blogged that I was on the market. I got a LOT of responses from that. Those responses turned into a few interviews. Alas, in each case, it just wasn’t the right fit. Most of them I was ok with losing, there are a couple though that I thought would be a good fit. C’est La Vie.
- Finally, I reached out to my LinkedIn network. I sent a email out to about 90% of the contacts on my LinkedIn network letting people know that I was looking. One of the people in my network, David Strauss, forwarded it over to his VP of Marketing, and I got an email.
I did receive quite a few responses from posting to my LinkedIn network. Partly because I have a decent sized network, partly because I have been very careful in who I add to my network, I have rules. So I learned that large network + curated network = responsive network.
This one stood out though. I got an email, then a phone interview, then a flight to SFO. All within about a week. I left with a handshake agreement and the promise of a contract. (due to the holidays, this took longer than expected but I share in the blame for that as I was slow to respond at times) I’ve been a hiring manager before, I understand the process. I like the way that Pantheon hires. Whenever I am hiring, I know what I want, and I don’t have to see every candidate to make the decision. I interview until I find what I want and then pull the trigger. I love that because to me it shows confidence in the people and the process. Pantheon did just that. They actually told me, we won’t be interviewing anyone else for the position.
They were open an honest with me in the negotiations. Open to the point that I felt comfortable sharing my salary history with them, something I don’t usually do.
Why Advocate and not Evangelist?
In 2005, when I started at Zend, we didn’t have the term Developer Evangelist. I was “The Community Guy” at Zend. It wrapped up well what I did. I wasn’t the “Community Manager” because you can’t manage the PHP community, it is it’s own entity. My job was to speak to the PHP community on behalf of Zend and to speak to Zend on behalf of the PHP community. Most companies forget that second part. Zend, to it’s credit, did not.
That shaped my impression of the role that many companies have come to call Dev Evangelist. (DE) I prefer – and chose – Developer Advocate. (DA) This is more than just a marketing role, although I answer to the VP of marketing. I see my role as standing for the company when speaking to developers, and standing for developers when I speak to the company. This doesn’t mean that the company will always do what I say, but they have hired me to do this role so they are serious about listening. It is my job to manage the relationship between Pantheon and the developer community; I can’t do that as an evangelist.
Personally, I think more companies should concentrate on Developer Advocacy instead of Developer Evangelism. I have found in 100% of the times I have tried it, helping others is better marketing than simply promoting myself or the company I work for.
So I am back to helping develop communities. I still work in the PHP community, although I will be focusing more of my attention on Drupal than I have in a while. I am excited, and I hope they are too.
So…let’s talk Pantheon, Drupal, hosting, and of course, PHP! :)
Until next time,
I <3 |<
“…so I pinged Naramore…”
That’s my favorite line from my birthday party last night thrown for me by the Lovely and Talented Kathy, and attended by a few close friends. It was a wonderful evening of fun and fellowship.
— Ben Ramsey (@ramsey) December 15, 2013
A couple of highlights of the evening:
- Jacques Woodcock and Paul Jones both bought me bottles of Ron Zacapa 23yr old rum. I now hate you both. I had been happily drinking their regular rum. Now that I’ve tested the 23yr old, I can never EVER drink the other stuff again. It is THAT good. Thank goodness I have 2 bottles…and 2 awesome friends.
- The lovely and talented Kathy gave me an iPod. It’s not the gift that is remarkable – although I do love it – it’s that after 30 years, she still listens when I say things.
- My son – whom for most of his life I’ve loving referred to as “the boy” – bought me the soundtrack to the movie Xanadu on vinyl! This more than makes up for the fact that on the tumblr page his comment started with “…some would say that you’ve been like a father to me over the past years, but I think of you more as an ATM that has been taught to love”.
- Ben Ramsey telling the tale of how my foot got sliced open at PHP Appalachia ’08.
There were so many other great memories of the night, I want to thank all of you who attended for helping make my Birthday special.
The party however was just the beginning. Many of you know now, what I was going to find out. The PHP community got together and helped celebrate my birthday in ways that sincerely humbled me to my core.
First, a tumbler page – “Happy Birthday Cal Evans” – was setup so that friends could wish me a happy birthday. I pride myself in knowing what is going on in the PHP community and I didn’t hear a peep about this till Kathy brought it up on her ipad at the party to show me. I was floored. The outpouring of love, the well wishes, the stories, the videos, and Michelle’s happy birthday song, were almost more than I could take. It took me a long time to read all of them, watch the videos, and listen to the song. I had to keep stopping and cleaning my glasses, damn things kept getting wet and had to be dried off.
Second, many of my friends, more than I knew I had, all chipped in to buy me a present. Together, they raised enough to buy me a Bitcoin! (1.35 to be exact) Honestly, I was speechless. They presented me with a paper at the party telling me what had been done and it was all just so overwhelming. It really wasn’t until this morning, after the fun and fellowship of the party, after the afterglow with my wife and son, and after the rum wore off, that I began to understand just what all of you had done for me.
— Luke Stokes (@lukestokes) December 15, 2013
Third, this morning I woke to be greeted with another tribute from another good friend I’ve never met, Khayrattee (7php) Wasseem had posted a page of birthday wishes from friends. Again, it took me way longer than normal to read through them.
I say with all sincerity that I am not worthy of the love that has been shown to me this weekend. I am amazed, I am happy, but most of all I am humbled.
I have said it before and I will repeat it here. The community is the greatest asset that PHP has. Not me, all of us together. There are so many giants in the community and I am just honored to be a small part of it.
Thank you to each and every one of you who had a hand in the party, the gift, the tumbler page, or 7PHP’s page. Thank you to each of you who tweeted happy Birthday to me, sent me birthday wishes by Facebook, or dropped me an email. I can’t fully express to you how much I love you and appreciate what you’ve done for me.
One day I hope to grow into the man you all see me as; until then, I’ll just have to keep trying.
Until next time,
I <3 all of you!
p.s. Thank you to the following people for participating in the Tumbler page, the 7PHP article, the awesome gift, and my birthday party. I love you all so very much.
- Kathy Evans (The love of my life)
- Evan Coury
- Jacques Woodcock (The Cat in the Hat)
- Paul Jones
- Ben Ramsey
- Josh Holmes
- Michelangelo van Damn
- John Coggeshall
- Shanda Evans (My wonderful sister)
- Elizbeth Tucker Long & Liam (Liam, buddy, you have no idea how lucky you are to have a mom like E3.)
- All my WONDERFUL friends at Engine Yard
- David Coallier
- Shawn Stratton
- Nick Sloan
- Lineke Kerckhoffs (Who runs Pro Talk that every PHP developer should bookmark and visit regularly.)
- Chris Taknersly
- Daniel Cousineau
- JC Evans (The Boy)
- Ivo Jansch
- Oleg Baranovsky (Thank you Oleg for all that you do for the PHP Community)
- Luke Stokes
- David Weinraub
- Joe Devon
- Chris Spruck
- Ashley Evans (My brother who shot me in the back with a BB gun)
- Andrei Zmievski
- Davey Shafik
- Rob Allen
- Tobias Gies
- Liz Naramore and her son Will (you dear Liz, are the AWESOME in AWESOMESAUCE!)
- Rafael Dohms
- Matthew Turland
- Michelle Sanver (What a beautiful song from a beautiful songbird)
- Patrick Schwisow
- William Golden
- Brian Dailey
- Matthew Weier O’Phinney (Supreme Allied Commander of Zend Framework.)
- Lorna Jane Mitchell
- Chris Hartjes
- Adam Culp
- Jason Myers
- Wez Furlong
- Big Blue Hat
- Thursday Bram
- PJ Hagerty
- Clarke Everest
- Peter Meth
- Sean Prunka
- Jake Smith
- Jeremy Kendall
- Ben Scholzen
- Gary Hocking
- Justin Martin
I’m looking for a job, got a spare? Email me. Want to help? RT this or recommend me to a company you know that is looking.
For the second time since I have been blogging (and for the 3rd time in my career) I find myself looking for “What’s next”. I received a call from my employer this morning that basically said “we are going in a different direction”.[Nice comments about the company redacted to comply with my exit agreement.]
So I have been sitting here thinking about who I am, what I do, and what I want to do when I grow up. (It should be noted that as I sit here and write this, I am staring 50 years old in the face. If I am ever going to grow up, it needs to be soon.)
Things have changed a little since I wrote this same post in 2009. The main thing that has changed is that I have discovered that I love teaching and helping developers grow. When I look back at the last 10 years of my career, it’s not really a revelation, but I hadn’t really noticed it until a year or so ago.
Second, my life goals have changed. I have records of what my short-mid-long term goals were a few years back. As I look at them now, I begin to realize that they aren’t as important as I thought they were. Most of my goals in the past have been about things. I realized this summer that my major life goal; my BHAG; is to do something that makes a difference. I don’t have to change the world, but I’d like to leave it a better place than I found it.
The Call to Action
So with all of that in mind, I announce to you that I am looking for my next great adventure and ask for your help in finding it.
Does your company need any of those either full time or contract? If so, reach out to me via email cal at calevans dot com. If you need my resume, Click “Resume of Cal Evans”.
Until next time,
I <3 |<