Career 2.0: I’m leaving IBM and joining Socialtext

July 9 2008 10:00:00 AM Comments Disabled
Of all my blog posts over the last few years, today's is certainly one of the most interesting.

I'm both excited and sad, to tell you all that as of today I'm no longer working at IBM.

This was not an easy decision, as I've been bleeding yellow for Lotus since 1993.  Back as a co-op student those many years ago, I never imaged the people I'd meet, the places I'd visit, or the involvement I'd have in such an exciting industry.  However, I've reached a stage where I feel it is time for me to move on.

You see, IBM is the only professional employer I've ever had.  While the benefits of working at one of the world's largest companies are immeasurable, I've always been curious about what it would be like to work somewhere else.  Somewhere smaller.  Somewhere I can gain a vastly different set of skills and experiences.  Over the years I've listened to many of you talk about how different things are in small companies.  Well, now is the time for me to discover some of those differences first hand.

So I'm jumping with joy to announce that I've accepted the position of Director of Marketing at Socialtext.
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This is an incredible opportunity.  Not only will I be working at leading edge company developing amazing and innovative products, but I'll also be working with industry greats such as Ross Mayfield, Eugene Lee, Dan Bricklin (the dude invented the electronic spreadsheet!) and the rest of the amazing staff at Socialtext.  I'll blog more about Socialtext, and my role there in upcoming posts, I don't want this one to be too long.

So back to the change...

I've had so many exciting times during my IBM career, but when I look back, my top memories always revolve around the social interactions that I participated in.  I've loved working directly with you, IBM's customers and partners, analysts and press, and my top notch colleagues.  I've enjoyed all the interviews, executive briefings, visits to your offices, and especially speaking at conferences.  Without a doubt, Lotusphere is certainly the crown jewel of IT events, and I've had the incredible honour of not only attending around 10 of them (and hopefully more in the future), but I've also been part of two Lotusphere Opening General Sessions.  I can't imagine anything topping that!  I'm also extremely proud to have won the 2007 Penumbra Prism Award, presented by our partners for outstanding dedication and support to the partner community.  It is the overall Lotus Community that has made my time so special.

While I am sad to go, I'm thrilled that I'm able to leave Lotus at a time when things are doing so well.  After the mixed messages of the early-mid 2000s, it is wonderful to see our core products standing tall in today's fierce competitive landscape.  The newest releases of Lotus Notes/Domino and Sametime are unmatched by anything else in the industry.  It is equally exciting to see Lotus expand into new markets with products like Connections, Quickr, Mashups, Symphony, Foundations, Unyte, Bluehouse, the list goes on and on.  I'm proud of the things I've done to help drive this success, and wish Lotus all the best in future.  Actually, I guess I'll be contributing my $100 towards a Notes license now, as I can't get a free ride from IBM anymore!

Also, I'll still have close ties to Lotus, as Socialtext is a partner, proving wiki capabilities into Connections.  I'd love to see all Lotus Connections customers using Socialtext, and all Socialtext customers using Lotus Connections! (plus Notes, Sametime, etc!)  I can easily think of several other potential integration points between the Lotus and Socialtext portfolios, so expect to see me blogging about this in the future.  Perhaps an IdeaJam site will be perfect for this! ;-)

I want to sincerely thank each of you for the times we've shared.  I hope to remain a very active part of the amazing Lotus community.  Dedication to Lotus runs deep in my veins, and is not something I plan on giving up any time soon!

Over the next few days I plan on blogging about some specific memories, and in keeping with today's "web 2.0" themes of open sharing and participation, it would mean a lot to me to have you post a memory or two in the comments, that way we can all have a central place to reminisce.