My visit to the collective

I had some meetings at Yahoo HQ today, so I took advantage of the opportunity to scope out the place and touch bases with some people.

Official meetings were as follows:
Ops-swat. NY suite is closed, walkthrough completed, suite turned over, done deal. Not much else to report.
BSD qa install. Touched bases with East who is in Y site ops, he will install kernel on qapicrawl machine.
Gladiator QA. Erik, Cameron, Linda are tracking it, nothing really for me to do.
Babel & Shortcuts brain dump. I gave Y Site Ops the operational highlights (not much) and I will send links to our docs. Not much dramatic there. Their team seems to be a lot like ours.

Unofficial meetings were as follows in random order:

Lunch with: Linda, Celeste, Darryl, Manny, Anne. The cafe is cool, wide selection, but plenty crowded. Darryl is leaving Yahoo as of tomorrow and going to China.

Cameron: Met with her at 2:30 and had a break 3-330, so she took me around to show me where many of the ex-AV people ended up. She also asked, did I know anyone else with QA experience and I said “Yeah, me, 5 years QA lead.” She was quite surprised! She took me around to meet David Ku, who might be looking for someone for QA purposes. Also saw AV folks such as: Amod, Sakina, Phil, Zim, Andreas, Chris, Simon, Tu, Mark, DaveR. Dave R took me around to meet Nam also.

David Ku: Before I really knew what was going on, Cameron was telling David that “Greg has some time on his hands so he can help us with some QA stuff. Can we get him set up with some space here?” Well, I don’t know if I would be interested in working on stuff if there’s no offer in it, but we’ll see what they have to say. I didn’t let on that she seemed to be talking out of her hat and just smiled and shook hands. No real talking, just an introduction.

Nam: Had already heard of me via Erik Jessen. He said “Do you have some time right now?” Of course, I always have time to follow a lead :) They are building their own team of “ops-like stuff in engineering” basically doing some stuff that avops used to do that Y site ops doesn’t, like monitoring (full on statistics, not red/green noc monitoring) deployments, etc. It would be sort of like doing Integration without doing Site Ops. I don’t remember if Nam reports to David Ku or the other way around.

Steve Simpson: He is the guy who has an opening for DNS Administrator, and I saw him when visiting with Amod and again after talking to Nam. I don’t think he really wanted to talk about the position, but indicated that we should try to get together Monday, since he had something to do offsite tomorrow. This is the only lead that had an actual req attached so it has the best chance of giving me an offer, but it’s probably the one I want the least. Something about this guy bugs me, he seems kind of evasive and difficult to read.

Steve Pomush: Saw this guy walking the other way across the quad. This was the guy who stalled on getting back to me on “Unix Sysadmin Manager” and finally said “we have a strong candidate identified.” He was supposed to follow up with me again in January about more exciting opportunities in IT. I don’t think I would want to work for this guy.

David Bills: Talked about all the leads I am working on, and talked a bit about his new role.

So, the result of a day of networking… there are something like 4 leads total that could be followed up. Best chance of happening: DNS thing. Worst chance of happening: IT. Most wanted: Nam/David Ku if I could get them to combine their needs into one job. Least wanted: IT followed closely by DNS.

I am still quite cynical about Yahoo, and I’m still telling anyone who asks that “I’m on transition until April, or for as long as I can be bothered, but my real goal is to get an offer and accept it in January.” But it’s a company, and visiting the campus made me remember how many people I do still know on the inside. So, I will continue to pursue any leads that come my way. If they end up making an offer, I will consider it.

Of course, my “true calling” is still fighting spam, so I will continue to pursue other leads having to do with that:
1. the recruiter who got me the interview for Linux System Administrator said they won’t be giving me an offer, mostly because “I would be a good manager but I didn’t seem to have the level of technical expertise they want.” Which is strange because they didn’t really ask me a lot of technical questions. But, the recruiter will keep looking for other leads and let me know if he finds anything. They deal with Brightmail so perhaps there will be something there.
2. Postini is probably the most interesting, but they haven’t gotten back to me at all, which is surprising… I would have expected at least a phone call.
3. Dashed off a note to Phil Steffora who is head of operations at Mailblocks. He would like to chat on the phone but hasn’t called at the number I gave him..
I think someone else mentioned a spam lead I should follow up on, but I forget who. If you sent me a lead last year and I didn’t follow up, tell me again… I’m looking much more actively now.

I don’t think I will actually see an offer in January… for one thing I haven’t been working the contacts hard enough… but I still want to keep the pressure on to Y that I’m actively looking. It’s looking more like February is a better goal, which gives leads a bit of time to percolate, but still gives me time after to lower my expectations. So, January would be nice but I don’t want to lower my expectations too soon :)

Thanks to everyone for your support, by the way.

0 thoughts on “My visit to the collective

  1. torquemada

    Very interesting. I think it would be very convenient to land one of these Yahoo! jobs (okay, more convenient for some than others), but by all means look elsewhere. I strongly doubt that, during this digestion period, they’ll really be opening any new reqs unless they find a strong fit, but if they do, having more eggs in your basket might incline them to act quickly and decisively to keep you.

    Or I could just be really tired and babbling incoherently.

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