Earlier today , I accepted IBM’s offer to join them as a VP & Partner in the Strategy and Business Analytics Group . My primary focus will be in helping IBM customers take their business to its next level using modern big data and analytics solutions . It is a technology agnostic role – which makes it very flexible to craft unique solutions and also makes it great fun . Maybe there is even an opportunity to partner with my old gang at MongoDB !
First I am off to India to visit my folks and have a nice vacation before starting at IBM . In many ways , joining IBM is like going home . For all intents and purposes – I “grew up” professionally in IBM . Almost everything I know about leadership , customer success, sales , high quality delivery etc are all skills I picked up while at IBM . There is a lot more to learn and I am sure this second innings is going to give me an opportunity for exactly that .
When I decided to leave MongoDB , I certainly knew that IBM would be one of the places I might find a job . I kept my options open and cast a rather wide net . I was talked out of opening a restaurant by some friends (both using data and emotions) . But that still left a bunch of questions on what size of a company , what role ( serious identity crisis having done a lot of different things at work in past ) , location and so on . It was downright confusing – and I took some of my own advice . I started calling my friends and mentors to talk this through . I can’t thank these folks enough for taking my countless calls . Some of them opened doors at places I otherwise wouldn’t have opened on my own . They are truly my guardian angels .
Those of you that read my blog regularly know my less than gracious thoughts about the broken process of recruiting . Those thoughts are all the more amplified now in my mind . Suffice it to say – more than half the opportunities I stopped exploring happened so because of god awful recruiting processes . Eventually I shortlisted to five companies as potential employers . Four big companies and one startup .
The recruitment process with IBM was super fast compared to what I expected . Every one from my hiring manager Jerry Kurtz to the GM of North America Lori Steele took the time to meet with me and answer my every question . It was also kind of fun that the executive recruiter Jennette was the technical recruiter a decade ago that originally recruited me into IBM . And last but not least – I owe a lot to my long time friend , mentor and former boss Ken Englund for all his encouragement and support . The extremely high quality of leadership talent that IBM has is a big reason for me to join them .
My wife did not put any pressure to pick one offer over another . But my ten year old daughter Shreya made it crystal clear that she would like to see me back at IBM . In her first grade – she wrote this inner journal , and it is still her dream job to be a globe trotting IBM engineer. I am glad she won’t be disappointed 🙂 . Turns out my father in law was also rooting for IBM behind the scenes – although he did not explicitly tell me so while I was going through the process .