Have you ever had that moment in your life where you feel completely lost and you just can’t find the right “place” to be? That has been my life most of the summer. Let’s be honest, most of this year I haven’t felt like I was making the right decision or doing the right thing.
Life after Pantheon
Most of you read my blog post about the toxic person I was dealing with and I haven’t really followed up with any of you on what ended up happening. Without airing anyone’s dirty laundry, this person was let go after my departure based on their conversations with other people in the WordPress community. Admittedly, this felt like a punch in the gut. I really wish these actions would have been taken before I left, however, this was mostly my fault. I didn’t say enough to the right people to raise this problem sooner.
I do want to thank them for their very personal apology and conversation after this person was let go. I feel at peace with what happened and know that other women there are now in a safe environment at what is still an amazing company and place to work.
Moving Onto CircleCI
I excitedly accepted a role at CircleCI and started in July, and at the time, I thought it was the right thing to do. Looking back, I think the move was my emotional response to what I was dealing with. I had dealt with this toxic person for most of my career at Pantheon and was just tired. Tired of fighting, tired of dealing with their poor treatment of me. I was just happy to get away from him, but not necessarily from Pantheon.
I thought I was excited for the new adventure with CircleCI, but time proved otherwise. Onboarding was very difficult for me—and that never happens. Normally, I am the kind of person who dives in, deep, to learn everything I possibly can. I was still tired and I didn’t realize it. I struggled with being one of only two remote employees on the team, which again, is usually never a problem for me. I struggled to figure out what direction I should take and who I should prioritize getting to know—again, if you know me, you know this is not something I normally struggle with.
I couldn’t pinpoint what the problem was. It surely wasn’t their product—because I love it. It definitely wasn’t my manager, she is one of the best people I have ever had the pleasure of working with. The team was great, the benefits & pay were even better and I couldn’t have felt more supported by any other company than I did at CircleCI—so what was the problem?! It was me.
When I left Pantheon I was so happy to be away from Mr. Toxic that I didn’t even stop to think about what I truly wanted to do. I know in my soul, and still do, that community and developers was where I wanted to be, but did I want to do that at CircleCI? I think the answer was no, but I didn’t see that until now.
I gave my resignation to my manager at CircleCI. Could I have had a more directed onboarding experience? Definitely. Could I have had clearer alignment on goals, sure. However, I do not think that either of those things would have changed my emotional feelings towards the role.
Short Answer: Tugboat business growth & starting my own adventure!
Let’s start with Tugboat. Tugboat is a pull request builder and user feedback platform. What does that mean? Tugboat creates environments on pull requests that are a full copy of your website so that you can easily send a preview link to your client, QA team or whomever you need to share the new feature with and allow them to provide you feedback. Sounds awesome, right?! I have always been a big fan of Matt and when this opportunity came up, I couldn’t resist the chance to help him grow this awesome product. As a contractor, I will be helping to grow the business through sales & client relationships, increasing brand awareness and product education. If Tugboat interests you—let’s chat!
A New Adventure
Back in June, while still at Pantheon, I bought the domain name devocate.com. In my head, it would be a SaaS product that would help aide tech companies in growing a developer influencer program through influencer tracking, challenges, rewards & ROI reporting. I have been putting off doing anything with the domain name because I felt like the only way to create this product was by starting with a fully featured SaaS product right off the bat.
I was at CaboPress this week—literally the best conference I have ever been to in my entire life. The entire conference was focused on business development in a mastermind-style setting that included morning sessions in the pool, assigned lunch groups, amazing afternoon conversations, delicious and productive dinners and social time with some of the smartest people I may ever know. I learned that my SaaS idea doesn’t need to start off as a SaaS product. I can start by offering services and a lighter product and use those profits to bootstrap my SaaS product. To be honest, I should have thought of this, but I was so consumed with how featureful and amazing the product would be that I couldn’t see the path that would get me there.
With that being said, Devocate—my new Developer Influencer Marketing business will launch very soon. First, starting off as a consultative relationship with product & service companies seeking authentic brand awareness and increased revenue by fostering stronger relationships with their power users / super fans. Shortly after, offering a WordPress plugin to help facilitate the program with an interface for their influencers and team to manage the program and activities. And eventually being a full SaaS network where developers can join and become influencers for multiple companies they love.
If developer influencer marketing seems appealing, book time with me. I am looking for a handful of companies to work with immediately.
2019 has been a bit bananas, but I am confident that I will wrap up the year with at least 5 new Devocate clients and make huge strides in business development for Tugboat. I excel at creating and building relationships with people through my candid transparency and these adventures are going to let me do that on a daily basis.