Tuesday, 17 May 2022
Tuesday, 10 May 2022
When I started my career as an engineer, I was keen on experiencing as many roles in the end-to-end software stack as possible. I switched teams, projects and even organisations. I even made the cast of the "Switcher" video that our HR careers team produced to promote growth opportunities through switching jobs! I once switched roles just before being promoted too, starting over as a junior engineer in a different part of the org build a tech stack I had zero prior experience in. Even after switching tracks between management-and-technical to becoming Principal Engineer, thinking I would remain firmly technical - I switched to back management for practical lifestyle reasons. But even within management, I switched between management roles just so that I could experience as many facets of business as possible, so that I could one day maybe run my own company! I also switched from a tech platform product service provider to big corporates & also was lucky enough to experience start-ups from concept to business launch.
Sunday, 16 January 2022
In my first post of 2022, I shared some analytics of my life tracking data for the last 6 years. I couldn't help myself going down the rabbit hole with additional questions that could be used to trigger additional self reflection, which would then spark me to make deliberate changes in my life. It was quite fun going down the rabbit hole playing with AWS Quicksight and manipulating data fields to get to the answers I sought.
When I have more time to play around, I think an AI/ML personal assistant should use my data to help me with insights. I believe there will be a market in personal analytics or metrics, or personal telemetry that I've coined the termed personametry back in 2015. At that time I wanted to build a product based on my RAGE model called personametry. Alas, that project is still on the backburner, and I've made a ton of excuses (to be honest) not getting it off the ground. Yes, my work got in the way, reality of family and financial obligations, then complacency and comforts-of-life (aka laziness). If I was serious about it, I would've made a plan. I resigned to keep tracking my data, keeping abreast of the progress of personal assistants, productivity apps and personal tracking devices, looking for the timing when things begin to fall into place!!
If you have additional questions you think might inspire changes & personal improvements, let me know in the comments section!
How do I breakdown my 24-hour days?
Monday, 3 January 2022
It's that time of the year when I review my personal time keeping metrics showing how I've spent my time over the previous year. I've been doing this exercise diligently since 2015, when I created a framework for myself called "RAGE" Reality, Aspirations, Goals, Expectations. Using ideas from software engineering and product management, I decided to map out my personal (life) and professional (work) streams across the many dimensions I was involved in (Muslim | Individual | Professional | Husband | Father | Friend | etc.). I focused on Time as the key metric to track, since time is one of the most important resource that should never be squandered.
The idea is simple: if something is important to me, then I should be spending time in that area - but if I end up spending little or zero time on that thing, then that thing must have not been as important to me as I thought it was.
Tracking time allows me to answer questions like:
- Am I spending time in the areas that are important to me?
- Which areas am I over indexing on that negatively impacts my other steams, robbing me of value?
- Am I giving each stream the necessary amount of attention?
- What decisions do I need to make when the data and anecdotes (feelings / instincts) don't match up?
2021 Re-starting Life & Work (again)
Saturday, 11 December 2021
I myself have used this term on a few occasions, heck, the goal for my current job was to transform the engineering team & products we build, from being "ordinary" to "world-class", to build a "world-class" engineering team. Three years later, I now see what a whole load of bullshit that really was!! And instead of being used as a powerful motivator for change, it "world-class" carries far more negative connotations that positive...incidentally, I had stopped using the term less than a year into the role, I don't use it with my team anymore, although I have to deal with non-technical executives as well as key stakeholders across the business, who regularly challenge: Do you have world-class engineers? Are they A players or B players? We need champions league players...and so on.
For people coming from the western world into Africa, you will indeed be in for a surprise. Even myself, a returning African after working for decade in Europe, was initially flabbagastered ...