Patrick McDavid

I'm a technology leader in Colorado speaking about serverless computing, team building, devops, and leadership development.

Working for the Best Company

03 November 2018

What’s important to you about where you work? Is it the people, the technologies, the processes? Is it success or fortune?

I’ve been interviewing technologists for the last several years and this is a conversation I’ve had time and again. As you’d expect, answers vary a lot, though there are certainly themes centered around where people are in their careers:

  • High performers earlier in their careers want learning and new technologies.
  • High performers in the middle of their careers want stability and good people around them.
  • Those same folks later in their careers tend to assume the former, but instead seek out hard problems.

I can now measure my career as being two decades old. I was 16 in 1998, and in lieu of pursuing my drivers licenses, I was instead trying to start a web development company. A number of now lifelong friends and I called ourselves X over Zero web technologies. A testament to our youthful idealism, we were charmed with the idea of the result of the equation X/0 being positive infinity. We had the now-defunct and thought ourselves young entrepreneurs.

I remember turning out some bare-html table-designed corporate sites for a local telecom, a boutique sporting goods company, an electronics manufacturer, and something called CadetNet, a prototypical online forum for United States Air Force Academy cadets who were just getting computers in their dormitories.

A series of wonderful twists and turns, and a ensemble of wonderful and educationally sketchy people filled the ensuing professional years, and by some determination and luck I’ve found myself now with nearly half my career having been spent with a wonderful group that calls itself BombBomb.

You’d think I’d have exactly the right thing to say by now when people ask me to explain what this strangely named company is.

  • We make it easy to send simple videos.
  • We make software that lets you be there in person when you can’t be there in person.
  • We make video email.

Those are all wanting in different ways, but they’re all kinda right.

I joined BombBomb as a coder. They needed someone to lash together ideas as a software product that the very talented salespeople that had founded the company wanted to use for themselves to reach out to new and past clients. I was well suited for this, as a programmer I move very quickly, and that worked well for a few years to get exciting ne w features in front of users and prospects. Then we needed to do more: between 2012 and 2015 I hired half a dozen folks who matured and broadened our technical offering.

Then, in 2016, BombBomb started really growing in earnest, and my job changed: coaching, recruiting, product management, strategy. These were all challenges I’d faced in their infant stages, this was next level. Those around me faced similar new tests. Bruises and glory. New records and fights.

This job’s been everything I could want it to be: education, people, hard problems. I’ve known for a while this has been the best of my professional career. What’s BombBomb? Last night Colorado heard the same thing: BombBomb is the best company to work for in 2018.