Brags

My Greatest Strength

I listen. So many people hear others, but don’t really grasp the entire situation. The big picture comes easily to me, which drives my testing background. My attention to detail gives me an edge that allows me to grasp what isn’t quickly seen. Taking a step back from a situation and seeing many if not all sides, let’s me make decisions based on more than the easy pick.

How I Handle Conflicts at Work

I know this is a big concern for employers – trying to maintain a healthy, productive work environment with all that geek-ego in the room can be tough. I’ve had the usual share of workplace conflict, and I try to handle it professionally. One time, I was tasked with bringing a new solution into our technology stack, and it wasn’t a universally popular decision. I got a lot of pushback – but I stayed calm. The problem wasn’t with me, just what I represented, and I knew that. I acknowledged the concerns, and asked for time to sit down with everyone and really get them out in the open. And I listened. I tried to understand which concerns were just fear of change, and which was had a legitimate basis. I went back to my boss, and we agreed to hold off on a couple of aspects that, frankly, hadn’t been thought out as well as everyone needed. In the end, the whole thing got done, and everyone on the team was a lot happier about the result.

Operational Analytics FTW

With a previous employer, I helped implement “big data” operational analytics. This wasn’t just an effort for our IT team to be cool – we were seriously overworked, and we suspected we had a lot more computing capacity than we needed, and the company was hoping to cut back on some upcoming capital expenses. Implementing operational analytics isn’t easy, but after a few short months it paid off: we were able to pinpoint specific areas where we had excess capacity, massively rearrange workloads, and identify the capacity we needed for new projects. Our net savings in the first two years was around $1.2M, and we’d just gotten started.

OpenStack idea

So I keep hearing about OpenStack, but I don’t have a ton of physical machines laying around. Looking at http://docs.openstack.org/developer/devstack/guides/single-machine.html for some initial work, then I’ll move on to multiple VMs on my VM host. What I’d like to do, is be able to spin up an environment quickly, easily, using OpenStack for some of the work I’ve been doing. I’ve used AutomatedLab (https://github.com/AutomatedLab/AutomatedLab) on Hyper-V before, as well as the new Containers feature of Windows Server 2016, but I want to learn about how others use virtualization and management tools in order to scale up/out their infrastructure and services.