I’ve been blessed to expand my career in ways I could not have conceived 5+ years ago. They include speaking engagements at #VeeamOn with fellow Veeam Vanguards, VMUG UserCons, hosting the VMUG Unfiltered podcast, writing engagements for Aruba Networks, THWACK, Runecast, GestaltIT, and Tech Field Day. In addition to this, the various tech advocacy\influencer groups I’m a member of include the Cisco Champions, the Nutanix Technology Champions, the Tech Level Up Project, Tech Field Day, the Veeam Vanguards, and the VMware vExperts. Finally, thank you Jorge Torres and William Lam for believing in me back in 2017 which I used as motivation to #GiveBack and eventually led to my role as a DC VMUG Leader.
Each and every one of you (directly or indirectly) have had such a positive influence on my career and I can’t thank you enough for it. While I’d like to recognize each person by name, just know I will forever be thankful for your support and friendship along the way. For those reading this post, believe in the power of the community. My recommendation is to commit to it and you will be rewarded for it in due time. #Patience
What seems like yesterday, Yoda made this famous quote in The Empire Strikes Back in 1980 and this line has always served as a reminder to commit oneself to something completely, win or lose.
For those of you that have gotten to know me during the past few years, you know I try. I don’t lack for effort but professional opportunities have not always been there for me. I’ve remained patient, persistent, and grounded because I knew it was just a matter of time. My family and the tech community have always been there to support my efforts. The tech community has done for me professionally in the past 4-5 years more than I could ever imagine and I’ve often said that if I have one regret, I wish I had discovered the vCommunity 10+ years ago.
This is the moment (literally 4+ years and an enormous amount of patience) I’ve been waiting for and it gives me great joy to announce that I have accepted a role with ThinkOn as a Lead Solutions Architect that begins on April 26th, 2021. The timing of it all could not have come at a better time and without going into details, the emotions during the decision making process were bittersweet. On one side, my family and I were dealing with a family matter that brought us a tremendous amount of sadness and grief. On the other side, I was full of hope, joy, and excitement. It felt like I was stuck between a rock and a hard place. They were so many factors to consider but the most important one of them all will always be my family. Without hesitation, they are the driving force that provides the inspiration I need to excel professionally and personally each day.
However, none of this is possible without the tremendous support and encouragement provided to me by fellow Veeam Vanguard and author Chris Childerhose. The preverbal ball starting rolling in the right direction when Chris reached out to me and said “I think you’d be a good fit for ThinkOn and I would be more than happy to refer you internally to the organization for some roles that may fit your interests.” Thank you, Chris! I can’t wait to finally meet you and thank you for your support in person. Maybe the #VeeamVanguard Summit?
This, my friends, is the power of the community! I was excited and honored to know that someone in our tech community believed in me and the entire interview process from start to finish was seamless. With each conversation I had with Chris, my confidence level started to build and trend in the right direction. This trend continued with each interview including my first with Dan Timko (General Manager for the US and whom I’ll be reporting to).
From my first interview and until the last (three in all), I proactively reached out to fellow community members to get their take and feedback. They include Jim Jones, Matt Crape, Anwar Khan, Chris Hildebrandt, Franky Barragan, Kat Nelson Troyer and Liz Bronson (from Real Job Talk), Russell Hamker, Nick Scuola, Angelo Luciani, Amy Lewis, Tim Davis, Jeramiah Dooley, Craig Dalrymple, Adam Fisher, Nikola Pejková, Jeff Goodall, Phoummala Schmitt, Theresa Miller, Marino Wijay, Kelly Lanier, and so many more! Each of you went above and beyond the call of duty in your support and in some cases we talked privately about the decision making process, the role, the growth opportunities moving forward including the unfortunate personal matter for my family and I that delayed the ultimate decision. As I mentioned previously, these last few weeks for my family and I have been very bittersweet and trying to find the right balance was one of the hardest times in my life.
My final interview with ThinkOn is referred to as a Culture Interview. This essentially helped make my decision to accept the offer a slam dunk (and if you don’t already know, MJ is the #Goat). During this final call, I was introduced to numerous ThinkOn employees and each of them made me feel like I was at home and this was the right place for me. I’m often described as patient person and I see it as a good quality because…
With change, there will always be an adjustment period. While my energy level is at an all time high, I am nervous for the right reasons. I am loyal and it’s demonstrated by my tenure in my two previous roles (8 and 10 years respectively). However, everyone at ThinkOn has demonstrated their full commitment to me and I will put forth my best effort as I take on this challenge to ensure the organization remains successful while continuing to prosper for many years to come.
“For fate has a way of charting its own course, but before one surrenders to the hands of destiny, one might consider the power of the human spirit and the force that lies in one’s own free will” Lost: The Final Chapter
Until we meet again in person, I wish everyone nothing but the best and can’t thank you enough for your continued friendship.