My Current Availability:Available. (With a preference for FTE).
I am OPEN for a conversation about roles, I just ask that you respect my time and not bring me anything that you would not accept yourself given the existence of COVID19, etc.
I am OPEN for business networking that is not just you trying to sell me something or get me to code your startup for free.
I am NOT interested in relocation from my home in Seattle/Washington State, so please don't ask me to relocate. as my family keeps me in WA state.
Want my attention? Read the below F.A.Q. and know the details, be as competitive as you can be, and reach out respectfully with the understanding that I talk to a lot of recruiters.
Availability: Frequently Asked Questions
Thanks for your interest. I only accept roles I can be successful in, so I am very confident that I have the exact skills to hit the ground running on any project I accept. You have a backlog of code? I can do the work. You have a list of projects you need to prioritize or plan with the help of a Sr. level software architect? I can do the work to make sure your backlog is correctly sorted so you can actually get more done in the same amount of time by being smart about the dependencies of your different projects.
I have no concerns about my ability to perform the work I accept as a full stack developer, so after we discuss the role and I decide to accept, my only remaining concern is whether you have any concerns about my qualifications that I can address.
If I choose not to accept the role, I will explain why, and then do what I can to give you any advice or reference I can to help you still be successful in your project. So please, reach out for a discussion.
I'm not the sort to normally promote myself, but I often get asked to interview by companies looking for somebody with my wide range of technical and leadership skills and it is not uncommon for me to get many requests a week. Due to this, the following page was created so I could just copy and paste the link to recruiters who may need this data because I'm sick of promoting myself, and as an engineer this seemed like the simplest and most efficient fix.
The contents of this page may NOT be used for used for ETA-9089, USCIS Form I-140, or Visa Petition of any kind. This is to limit abuse by recruiters of me.
Technology Stack FAQ
Do you favor doing back-end development, or front-end development?
I'm a Full Stack Software Development Engineer.
If I told you that you could only do ONE, either back-end or front-end development, what would you pick?
If given a choice between back-end or front-end development, I would choose a role on the back because thats where the most technically challenging and business critical problems are.
I don't see enough engineering excellence on the front end to be interested in it, unless its something the company really needs done. I would much rather be where I can do the most good for the company/team, and sometimes that is the UI. But statistically, more often the biggest company need is on the back-end.
What clouds have you actually used?
I have personal development experience building products using Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Openstack, Hadoop, and manual "Rack and Stack" company built/hybrid clouds. I have also moved entire companies to the cloud, and between clouds, as well as been part of teams that did so.
What mobile application development experience do you have?
I have personal experience building products on all the major mobile App platforms (iOS [Objective C, Swift], Android [C++ ABI, Java]) as well as other legacy platforms (Windows Mobile [OS Level Code in C++, App in C#/.Net/C++], IoT [C++, Embedded Python, C, Assembly]), and Other embedded devices [C, C++, Assembly, Python, Lua, others].
What desktop development have you done?
I have personal experience building desktop products on all the major computing platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux) as well as other server-focused platforms (Berkley Software Distribution, HP-UX, Solaris, others).
I have personally used C#/.Net, F#/.Net, Python, PowerShell, DOS Batch Scripts, Go Lang, VBA, C++ (Visual Studio, GCC, CLANG), C (Visual Studio, GCC, CLANG), Perl, Assembly, and others.
I LOVE Python and GoLang and Rust's design interests me at a very geeky level, but I cant seem to find a Python/GO/Rust Language role.
What SQL / NoSQL / Database development have you done?
I have personal experience with multiple databases on all the major computing platforms (PC (Windows), Mac, Linux)) as well as other platforms.
This includes ACID compliant SQL based DB's including MySQL, PostgreSQL, T-SQL, SQLitem, as well as NoSQL aka "Not Only SQL" alternatives that include DynamoDB, Key->Value Stores and Document DB's, Key->Key->Value stores like Cassandra, etc.
I'm against MongoDB even existing on technical grounds that I'm happy to explain in detail, just ask.
What programming languages do you have the most recent experience in?
I have also spent a lot of time on other languages. Currently spending time with bison and flex grammars for the fun of it, if that means anything to you.
I don't limit myself to one language and I prefer to build up a toolbox so I can use the right tool for the job over treating a given programming language as the one tool for everything. Tools often get replaced with better tools.
Can you handle our needs?
Statistically, yes. If not I will say so, because your time is valuable and I hate BS'ing people.
I'm programming language agnostic and would rather have a toolbox than use a single language as a hammer against every problem.
If I do not already know the language or framework, I will tell you. I will then go get a book on it, and then spend time learning it on my own, just for the fun of it.
Contact me directly with your expectations. I'm always open to a conversation to see how I can help.
Leadership Style F.A.Q.
How would you best explain your leadership style?
I use a "Eyes on, Hands off" style. The goal is to maintain flexibility between different elements of servant leadership and typical PDM / Delegation while still maintaining business priorities by being results-oriented and balance sheet focused.
What does "Eyes on, Hands off" really mean in simple English?
It means I coach and train people, teams, and organizations so that leadership is not a bottleneck on the productivity of the members of the team, in a way that allows leadership to still maintain control over what results they get from the team, all without creating organizational problems that limit company growth or employee retention.
What if we train our people and they grow enough to be able to leave the company or ask for more money?
What if you don't improve your team's skills at all, and they decide to stay and lower the overall effectiveness of your company by being more Jr. level, and your company dies so slowly nobody knows it until its too late to save the company because your people stayed jr. level in their roles too long?
What if our organization is more Jr. because we can't retain our best people?
Stop using bad engineering for everything, treat people with respect, limit working hours to 40-45 hours a week, pay people market competitive rates, remove the bad managers, and your retention will improve.
If that is not helping, then you may have a leadership problem or you have a bad idea of what market rate looks like. In this case your leadership or management is possibly chasing your best people away even if you are paying people enough.
I actually specialize in helping companies keep their best people as part of larger efforts to grow teams to be more productive.
Reach out for a discussion.
Whats this "Love, Defend, Learn" Motto you often use about?
Its about remembering to be kind, and to cultivate people by tending them like you would a garden or rosebush, so they can bloom all the more fully. Reach out for a discussion.
Job Interest F.A.Q.
What are you actually looking for?
I'm looking to find a family focused company that I can invest my time and career into without feeling used or feeling dirty. It does not have to be a tech company, but I expect to be doing Tech Things for them.
I want to find a company I can help be successful using my tech skills, and then share in that success that I helped to create, myself. I don't want to be a temporary person.
I want to be able to actually schedule a vacation (Or maybe my own wedding?) 2 years in advance, and be able to actually go to it on time and keep the date without a meeting or business conflict getting in the way.
What sort of roles are you most interested in?
FTE gets my attention over anything else.
Contract to Hire gets my attention, but I often find that phrase maliciously and intentionally abused... so I will have questions.
Contact me for a discussion about anything else, if its not outright forbidden here.
What sort of roles should we *never* contact you about?
I do not think like this, as I have found that these forms of intellectual dualism can be limiting to opportunities. So, See below.
What sort of roles are you less interested in?
Most 1099 or c2c roles are not interesting to me at all BUT if you are willing to pay over $300/hour for a 40 hour work week and commit to at least a full 3 years in writing of all of this, then we can talk 1099/c2c roles because thats the price point where it can be sustainable for me. Otherwise, I consider anybody asking for c2c/1099 to be acting intentionally malicious as this is a very abused system and I see my peers hurt all the time. I have done the math. It's just not in my best interest to play these games, but I'm happy to keep the door on c2c/1099 unlocked in case you want to spend the money and commit to a long term partnership. Otherwise, please don't contact me for c2c or 1099 roles that do not fit these minimal requirements as I consider underpaying c2c/1099 roles to simply be a form of abuse, and that is why I only accept w2 roles most days.
I'm not open to any role that requires relocation while not being economically or socially competitive to Seattle. Basically, if you can't offer me a full relocation package and flat out buy me a home in my name that I own outright, and also pay me a market competitive wage, with benefits/etc on top of that, I'm not interested. I honestly hate the idea of relocating outside of WA, its my home, but a part of me likes the idea of just starting over, so this sentence exists.
Why does using using third party tests (HackerRank, etc) in our interview process a red flag for developers that hurts our ability to attract the best talent?
Such tests always violate the American Disabilities Act due to accessibility issues, and per Griggs v. Duke Power Company also can generally violate the Civil Right act and are considered to be discriminatory and illegal under settled anti discrimination and anti-racism laws. I don't want to risk personal liability to myself by complying with an illegal request. I also support diversity and inclusion in tech, and do not want to support any company that does not. You will find that the best developers agree with me, so you are chasing us all away with these requests.
Asking me to break United States Federal Law for you would be a great way for you to fail an IQ test. If you decide to do this, please do so in writing (such as by email or direct message) to make your life easier.
Its also a red flag for developers to see a company try to use a third party to validate team and company fit anyway, because that third party generally has no liability - and thus has no reason to care to even try to mitigate the risk - when they get things wrong. Third party tests don't care about your teams success the way the people on the team do, and actively harm companies when used. I see this all the time on contracts when I'm hired at a higher rate than any of the the FTEs on the team that were hired using these same tests to fix the problems they still can't handle, and I can normally directly trace these issues to their hiring process for FTE's and the use of these tests as a bad validation of skill, otherwise I would have never been hired because the FTE's could have handled it. The use of these third parties simply drives up company costs long term, under the false promise of upfront skill validation, long after the person is hired. Because of this, most developers consider it a red flag to see the request at all, because we have to consider that the company may be trying to use the third party to shield itself from liability while actively trying to discriminate illegally as well, per the above.
Technical Contracting F.A.Q.
What sort of roles are you most interested in?
See above "Job Interest F.A.Q.".
Why are you trying to get out of consulting and contracting?
I can't build the family/life I want if I'm looking for new contracts every few months. I want kids, a family, etc but I wouldn't be a good father if I didn't think about the long term effects of my career on my future wife or kids.
So your priority is FTE role?
Yes. Contact me for a discussion.
Would you be interested in a Contract-To-Hire role?
Yes. Contact me for a discussion.
I'm a recruiter who works only with FTE roles.
Great! Lets talk! I want to interview your company!
I'm a recruiter; How do I stay on your good side?
Be honest and candid. Sadly, past recruiters have chosen to intentionally lie to me to try to fill hard to fill roles. I do not respond well to being intentionally lied to.
Respect the division I intentionally maintain between home and work life. The reason people work is because they have families or lives. I respect that, and you should, too.
If you call a role a "FTE" role, it must be a full time perm direct hire role on w2. Otherwise, it's just a contract on w2 tax status and I have to assume you are being intentionally and aggressively malicious by lying to me.
If you call a role a "contract to hire" role, I will validate this with the client company and the hiring manager to mitigate possible risk to me.
If relocation or travel from my home in required for the role, please do not contact me about it as I am deeply worried about COVID19 and do not want to mistakenly get infected or accidentally infect others.
Why does your value system say you cannot work with recruiters who misrepresent roles or use bait and switch tactics?
If you otherwise seek to purchase or license my IP, start the conversation in a friendly tone that recognizes the fact I own the IP in question, and expect to pay market rates for licensing as I'm generally not the sort of person to sell my IP outright.
I'm a lawyer looking to talk to you about an opportunity to license your IP to my client..
Stop. One of the rules I picked up working as an Executive at a Fortune 50 company is that "Lawyers always only Talk to Other Lawyers".
The result of this is that I simply don't talk to lawyers that don't explicitly work for me. Period.
In the event that a Lawyer reaches out to me for any reason, I will always refer them to my own lawyer, let them sort it out, and then add the cost of my lawyer to any invoice I send out.
Why have you done so much contracting?
Back in 2005 I was just a 22 year old kid who had been running his own tech company since they were 17. I sort of "won the lotto" and through good luck, hard work, a lot of determination, and some help from friends I manage to land my first role at MSFT in MSR. MSR is also known as MSFT Research.
Here I am, surrounded by PHD's and experts in fields of study I adored. I wanted to learn everything. So I did what any man should do in that situation: I started asking questions about everything I could, including how best to take advantage of this opportunity.
They all told me the same thing; that I should stay a contractor until I was "ready" and "sick of it", move around the industry, learn daily - including from my own mistakes - and then once I wanted out of contracting, take the amount of experience/skills that I had acquired from contracting/consulting and settle down into a "work home" that I could invest myself in fully, in a mutually symbiotic relationship built on mutual respect and a sincere desire to keep learning while building the future.
Are you open to FTE roles?
Yes, as I am actually prioritizing FTE roles. Contact me for a discussion.
OK, I read the entire thing. I get what you are looking for. I think I have something you will enjoy. What is the secret to getting your attention?
Tell me you read the FAQ and mention the phrase "brown M&M's." in the subject when you contact me to get the best response/treatment.
I'm open to Contract to Hire positions, but I do my due diligence.