2014, and then, 2015.
It seems like my blog has been left in the dust after my previous post in May, so now seemed like a good time to update it and recap how 2014 was for me in terms of work and life.
The biggest change in my life for 2014 was probably the fact that I have started working full-time as a Software Engineer at Carousell (I have been working with the team since 2013, but only on a part-time basis). All the horror stories you have heard about software engineering came true - scaling woes, bugs ahoy, late night server maintenance and many more. Yet all these pain were counteracted when working with the amazing team at Carousell.
Carousell feels like a melting pot of people from different backgrounds. People might even mistake us as a School Orientation Group when we go out for company outings! And it is incredible because you normally would not get a chance to work with the following people:
- A Lead Community Manager who is a lawyer by training
- Software Engineers trained in Business and Real Estate (?!)
And this is why I feel that startups are different from working in a big corporation: people, however different from you, are all working together towards a common goal. The team has definitely grown bigger now, and now I cannot imagine how the company would be without everyone in the team. It is funny because just one year ago, there were only five full time staff (including the three co-founders)!
I always feel that software engineering should not be about blindly following a set of gathered specifications / requirements but rather a means to solve a problem as a team effort, and working at Carousell certainly gave me a chance to do just that. Problems are identified and we tackle them iteratively, sometimes taking a step back (or two) before we finally arrive at a solution that we think can solve the problem. This may involve talking to users, understanding user woes from our community and support team. All these interactions help remind me that problems cannot be solved by technical solutions alone.
Our community and support team work vigilantly to keep our users happy, and we on the engineering side do the same. There are many more we can do as engineers to keep our users happy (server uptime, application response time, etc.) and 2015 will be our playground to do even better.
Here is a list of everyone that I have worked with up until today in Carousell (in alphabetical order). Every one of them have taught me many important things as part of the Carousell family: Ariel, Ayu, Bang Hui, Bryan, Carinn, Camille, Chuan Yeong, Efrata, Felicia, Felix, Hui Yi, Jamie, Jenell, Jessica, JiaJun, Jing Zhi, Joyce Chen, Joyce Lim, Jurvis, Leslie, Lucas, Marcus, Mel, Michelle, Monette, Olivia, Quek, Reshma, Rum Raisin, Shawn, Sherry, Tara, Yuhsuan.
Not forgetting my amazing ex-interns: Debra and U San! Thanks for the amazing Teacher’s Day present too.
Sometimes I complain that the team is getting noisier in office (some members in particular get it more from me). But I have never said it was a bad thing :)
I am very blessed to have a supportive wife, who has to deal with a husband working on weekends when we were facing scaling challenges. Thanks for accompanying me for the past 10 years of our lives, and I hope you wouldn’t mind my forgetfulness!
I will feed you as many bowls of noodles you need as long as you keep smiling.Share