My Eighth Year at Dell

Image credit: Jay Cuthrell

My Eighth Year at Dell ( 2018 )

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The traditional one year blog post continues. The year since my last work related update would best be described as a time of great changes.

Years of Service

As of this October update, I’ve been with Dell for eight years. As I described last year and the year before, the references to the past are only legacy domain names and HR or payroll related.

Eight years. Eight years is the longest commitment I’ve ever made to any company. Granted, dual concurrent nested mergers might not be the same company but this is the longest continuous years of service record I’ve had in my career. It feels good. Even my 24 year old high tech nomad self would wonder who this guy is that claims to be me.

Great Changes

After my last post, my role changed. I transitioned and started to assist in preparation for new business growth.

Then my role changed again in January of this year. This time I also transformed completely to only new things.

For the past 9 months I’ve been 100% focused on new things. The biggest changes were very welcome changes.

So, I’ll go into a few of the changes that stand out for me personally.

The New Duties

Last year I took time to complete modules of curriculum in my career path. Some of my chosen curriculum centered on managing change, communicating change, and leading through change. Looking back, I’m glad I completed these modules.

My days and weeks are far more structured since January of this year. I’m razor focused on products and operations. The topics and time lines are different than being an Office of the CTO.

Developing KPIs, metrics, and measuring the efficiency of an engineering organization is rewarding. Engineering a product is truly a team effort. So, in many ways, I’m able to tap into the experiences from my prior time as a VP, GM, CTO, and managing software and system engineering groups back in the day.

The Lack of Road

Anyone that really knows me would probably say I’m a frequent work traveler. Looking back, I have travelled a couple million miles for work. I’m still incredibly thankful for having those opportunities.

However, in January of this year, I was offered the chance to give my travel bags a rest. I took the chance. How has it been? In a word? WONDERFUL.

In fact, Dell’s Legacy of Good Plan allowed me to enroll in flexible work programs. That makes me a proud member of the 58% of team members that do not commute into a traditional office.

Losing elite travel status was not a big deal because I don’t have to be in planes as much. However, I did try the matching program with American Airlines using my Delta Diamond status. RIP Virgin America. I still miss Singapore Airlines.

For me, only lounge access, re-booking, and dedicated call queues are primary differentiators for air travel with major US based carriers in the year 2018. Then again, my pleasure travel since January of this year has been more direct flights so that is always preferable to the risk of connections.

Yes, I’m soaking this “travel when you like” lifestyle up while I still can. It’s been really nice.

The Road Ahead

Do I think this will change in 2019? Yes. Probably. A lot.

Have I prepared? Also, yes.

After two years in Austin closer to the Round Rock mother ship, I’ve relocated near a bigger airport with more direct routes. AUS airport will probably be amazing by 2021 but I’m expecting to be back in the air again soon and I like having more options.

In addition to Trusted Traveler Programs, this year I’ve also picked up U.S. Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in anticipation of my travel schedule and destinations changing dramatically.

[REDACTED]

As for what has not changed, I still really cannot blog about what I am working on for customers. But maybe I’ll show up elsewhere in a company sanctioned online presence.

That said, I’ve moved off GitHub Pages to Netlify (see the footer below) and it has been outstanding. Maybe, as the failed promise goes, I will blog more now. Heh.

One other area I’ve changed is maintaining other social media profiles. 10 years of Twitter was a good run. So, I’m not on Twitter unless someone DMs me. Once again, I’ve removed my LinkedIn profile. I might put a placeholder back in place. Maybe.

I’ve tried to add a social media profile breadcrumb URL to link back to my website where possible. If not, I’ve removed the social media profile entirely.

Welcome to the SSL enabled canonical source of my seemingly anti-social media updates!

My 10 year prediction

This isn't real but it might be one day

Looking back, this past year has turned out to be a nuclear waste trash fire for a lot of social media services overall but I don’t claim that I saw it coming. Okay, maybe a little.

The Public Cloud might be easier than it has ever been… but so has the ability to get it very very wrong. Shifting placement of workloads may confer certain financial envelope favorability but it does not magically shift placement of responsibility and accountability.

Lately, it seems like the most consistent emails I get are from haveibeenpwned.com. If you reading this and know me, drop me a slightly more secure line here.

So, until next time… see you later. ;-)