I started my IT career working as a contractor in both short and long term engagements at medium to large customer sites. Since then, and for the past 13+ years, I’ve grown my career in a customer role. Along the way, I’ve picked up a tremendous amount of experience and expertise across several technologies. VMware virtualization came onto the scene and I was drawn to specialize in… well, you know the story there.
At present, I work for a great company and on a daily basis I’m at the helm of the largest vSphere implementation I’ve ever seen and possibly one of the largest in the region. I’ve networked, made a lot of friends, maybe a few enemies, and I’ve been the recipient of an unmeasurable amount of opportunity, kindness, and generosity available only to customers in the VMware community. However, from a role and operational aspect, I feel I’ve reached the peak of the mountain and I’ve seen and experienced all of the challenges that this mountain has to offer. It’s time to try another mountain.
I’m hanging up my customer hat. On Monday of next week, I begin a new role with Dell Compellent, a VMware Technology Alliance Partner. I’ll have two titles: Tactical Marketing Senior Advisor and Virtualization Product Specialist. Each speaks to a degree of what my various responsibilities will entail. My VMware experience will be leveraged continuously as I provide SME technical expertise to Storage Architects, Business Partners, and Customers on design, planning, and integration. In addition, I’ll be involved with consulting, product demos, solution certification, white papers, and reference architectures. In summary, I’ll be splitting my time between colleagues, customers, and more lab infrastructure than I might know what to do with, and at the same time exercising more of my design muscles.
So what does all this mean and how is it going to change Jason? Let’s go through the list of things which come to my mind:
- The VMware Virtualization Evangelist stays, though independent of this news I have been thinking about shortening the title to VMware vEvangelist (thoughts?). That said, I’ll need to provide extra thought in what and how I write. It is my underlying intent to deliver this news not from the standpoint of “hey, I got a new job”, but more importantly to instantiate the necessary transparency and disclosure from this point on. This blog (and my twitter account @jasonboche) has always been and will continue to be mine. I’ve made it quite clear in the past that my writing is my own and not the opinion or view of my employer. This carries forward and I will continue to be an independent voice as much as possible but the fact that I work for a VMware Partner in the future will be inescapable. Which brings me to the next point…
- VMware’s policy is that, other than a few people which were grandfathered in, VMware Partners cannot be VMware User Group (VMUG) leaders. I’ve been the Minneapolis VMUG leader for close to 5 years. I’ve been involved with the group since the beginning when it was founded by @tbecchetti. Although Dell Compellent was allowing me to continue carrying the VMUG torch, VMware forbids it. It’s a fair policy and I agree 100% with it. The Minneapolis VMUG members own and operate the group and this is clearly what’s best for the charter and its members. A few weeks ago, I began the transition plan with the help of VMware and have talked with several potential candidates for taking over the VMUG leader role. If I haven’t talked to you yet and you’re interested in leading or co-leading the group, please contact me via email expressing your interest. Be sure to leave your name and contact information. Our group has a quarterly meeting coming up this Friday which I’ll be conducting business as usual. Our Q3 meeting in September is where I’ll likely be stepping down and introducing the new leader(s).
- I’m still attending Gestalt Tech Field Day 6 evening activities in Boston 6/8 – 6/11, but I will not formally be a delegate nor will I be a delegate going forward as I’m no longer considered independent. Again, Gestalt IT guidelines and I completely get it, it’s what is best for the group. I’m looking forward to seeing some old friends as well as new faces from **I can’t let the cat out of the bag just yet, area locals will find out soon**.
- I’m going to get my hands on kit which I’ve not had the chance to work with in the past. Don’t be completely surprised if future discussion involves Dell Compellent. At the same time, don’t automatically jump to a conclusion that I’ve transformed into a puppet. Cool technology motivates me and is ultimately responsible for where I am at today. I enjoy sharing the knowledge with peers when and where I can. I believe that by sharing, everyone wins.
- VMworld – you’ll probably see me at the booth.
- Partner Exchange – I may be there as well.
- VMworld Europe – I hope but not counting on it. I didn’t ask.
I think that covers everything. Compellent is a local (to me) storage company which I like. I think Dell will add a lot of strength, opportunity, and growth. I’m excited to say the least!