Monday, October 06, 2014


So ... I have 10 other things I should be doing ... 

But at the moment I feel enthusiastic and hopeful ... so I should share, right?

This month is my one year anniversary of being a "Product Owner" and part of the Solutions/Product Management team. March (which feels like it was just last month) was my 4-year anniversary here. 

What does this mean?

  • I worked in Az as part of a Commodity Brokerage team for 6 years 
  • I worked as a Commodity Manager/Information Manager for 2 years in CA
  • I worked as many things (Dir. of Support, Sr. Imp/Training staff member) for 9 years (ok ... that sounds like forever) for a cotton software company in North Carolina 
  • I went back to being a chef for 6 months
  • And now I've been in healthcare software for 4 years - and had 3 different jobs in the same company
I don't know what it means ... maybe there's a link through all of this?

More questions ... what does a "Product Owner" do? If you live in the land of "Agile Development" this means that I'm the more "technical" side of the product management team.  It means someone else (the Product Manager) is the "visionary" person ... 

Example of a Product Manager's vision: "We need "things" people can hold and take to meetings with them and still see all their reports/data - (aka a laptop/tablet/smart phone). 

As a "Product Owner" is is my responsibility for translating those dreams and vague ideas into concrete (small) items that a development team can produce to meet the larger purpose. I need to know all the nuts and bolts and pieces of the product (if it already exists), or all the lessons learned from talking to customers about our previous product(s) - and translate them into making a new/better different product work/better. I work daily with the development team to bring these small pieces to life.

Thankfully "technical" doesn't mean I have to understand "method calls" and "objects", API's, SOAP and REST, and how to write code. It does mean I need to understand data-tables, relational databases, and when we are using REST vs SOAP. 

I also get to draw pictures of what new computer screens should look like, and tell people how they should work ... and then when they ask questions I don't understand I can hide behind, "Teach me" and "make me a diagram" ... and "what do YOU think is best?" and "let me show our customers and get some feedback".

I kinda love it. And I love the teams of developers I work with. They are the best guys (and women) EVER. 

Outside of work ... hmmm ... seems as there's not much "outside of work" these days. 

However, I did go on two(!!!) business trips in September (as first in four years) ... 

And! Tomorrow I get on a plane to go back to Arizona to visit a friend and watch her daughter (who was born when I lived in Phoenix) get married. 

And!!! My visit coincides with Delta Pine & Land Field day ... so I get to stand in cotton fields again ... and talk to my former co-workers ... and FARMERS! and shoot the shit ... and look at plants and bolls and fiber and talk about the market (OMG ... I am so excited!!) ... plus ... the desert ... stark cinnamon-colored mountains and dusty-green saguaro cactus ... and prickly jumping-chollas ... and sage and tumbleweeds and high-moving cloud formations that you can see from 40 miles away ... and THUNDER and LIGHTENING STORMS ... maybe even a flash flood or two (ok ... not that I want to be stuck in one) ... but Oh! to experience the smell, and feel and sounds!

It's going to be the most amazing 7-days. 

And now I better go pack!!

1 comment:

Bob said...

Your trip sounds fantastic. I haven't been inside a textile plant in 4-5 years. Kinda miss it.