I’m leaving Microsoft, looking for a new opportunity

I really like this picture as you probably know. I have the feeling that it represents well my journey at Microsoft.

For two years, and a half, I was a proud member of the Developer Platform Evangelist group (DPE) as a Technical Evangelist. During all that time, I shared with you the Open side of Microsoft. From the beginning till the end, I helped developers being successful on the Microsoft stack, changed their perception of the Death Star, and through this, meet some amazing people, but I’m reaching the end of this journey.

Leaving Microsoft

I really like the “we enter as friends, we leave as friends” quote my friend, Joey DeVilla, used in his own departure post as it reflect a lot of the actual state of my relationship with Microsoft. The reason is simple: the Technical Evangelist role as evolved in different ways at Microsoft, and I have the feeling that I’m not the right person anymore to help the company achieve its goals. I’m very happy to had the chance of being part of this amazing team, and worked with all those brilliant people. It was a pleasure, an honor, and I learn a lot during these years. It’s because of the people who cross my road at Microsoft, but also outside of Microsoft during that time, that I can pretend to be a better person now, and an even better Evangelist!

Making the world a bit more Open

When Microsoft approached me 3 years ago, I accepted the challenge (French post) to help Microsoft become more Open. They wanted someone to help them changed the perception, educate internally, and externally, and be that person at Microsoft Canada that would be able to Evangelize the Openness of Microsoft. It’s still not perfect, but I saw a big change in the last couple of years, and it continues in the right direction. More concreatly, most of my time was around four pillars:

  • Open Source: changed perception around Open Source, and Microsoft by talking about interoperability, Open Data, Web Standard, and all Open Source projects we had.
  • Web standard: HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript related to Internet Explorer 9, Internet Explorer 10, and Windows 8. On the Internet Explorer side, it was all about showing the respect of the standards, and educate people about the new version of HTML, and what, as developer, they can achieve. For Windows 8, it was basically to help Web Developers used their existing skills to build Windows 8 application.
  • Startups: I really enjoyed to work with startups to help them be successful, see how Microsoft can help them, and take them to the next level. It’s such a beautiful world!
  • Cloud computing: being responsible of the Openness of Microsoft in my team, Windows Azure was a big asset. Talking about PHP, Node.js, WordPress, Linux Virtual Machine, PaaS, IaaS… became a real passion for me.

Make Web Not War, the brand, and the site, was from the beginning to the end, my main responsibility. Think about hackathons, workshops, conferences, blog posts, and taking this community to the next level. I’m proud of what I achieved since I join Microsoft, and I firmly believe that it helped Microsoft to be more Open, and be perceived as the company it is really.

The future

As I’ve always done in my life, everything is about passion: life is too short to do things you are not excited, and passionate about anymore! Don’t get me wrong, I like to be a Technical Evangelist, and trust me, there is a lot of chances that the next step in my life will be as a Technical Evangelist (or something related). I like technology, I like to share my passion, and I like to help others being successful! So for now, it’s a bold move as I have nothing set in stone for my future yet. The only thing I know is that July 2nd will be my last day at the Empire. So from now on, I’ll be looking for the next challenge. Mostly around Evangelism (or Advocate if you prefer) on technologies I like, but I’m also open to learn about anything that would fit my profile. As far as I miss developing softwares all day long, I’m not looking to get back in this kind of role. I’ll do a more complete blog post on what I’m looking for, what I’m not, and the kind of person you can expect to work with if you hire me, but keep in mind those keywords if you are looking to hire: HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, Open Source, Web, Mobile, Cloud Computing, Startups… Please feel free to look at my LinkedIn profile, share this post on your social media, or send me an email if you think you have something interesting for me!

The opportunity

With me leaving Microsoft Canada, that will leave, of course, an empty seat. I’ll start soon to look at who will be the next person to take the role. The deal that I have with my actual manager, that I need to thank for his amazing support, is that I need to find someone who will be better than me. It doesn’t mean that I was a bad Evangelist, of course, but that mean that this team continue to get better, and better, and trust me, this is an all-star team at Microsoft worldwide, so they are looking for the greatest, and the brightest people! The person I’m looking for should have a kind-of Evangelist profile, will be based in Montreal (as I was – there is an important community here), need to be a bilingual Francophone, knows iOS or Android development, and should know the latest, and the greatest of HTML (read, HTML5). For the role itself, I think that the post Joey did, before I join Microsoft, is still so relevant, but I’ll also do a more complete one from my own perspective. So if you think you have the profile, as the official job posting may never go online, please let me know by email. I care less about your resume, than who you are, what’s your thought on the Microsoft platform, and what you did in your community.

At the end…

It was a hard decision, but being happy in life is not something you want to postpone, and like my friend Rick Claus said, it’s about chasing your dream! At the end, it’ll change nearly nothing for you. I’ll still be there to help you being successful, learning new technology, and putting you in contact with the right person depending on your needs. For the friends I’ve made, we will still be friends. For the people I meet, we cannot erase this part of our life, and I’ll still be a contact on whom you can count. I have also no plan to move from Montréal, so I’ll still be part of this amazing community, and help it growth. For Microsoft, they will get a new kick-ass Evangelist that will bring new ideas to the team, and let’s just say that they got a new influencer outside of the company. So I’m ready! I’m ready for the next journey, all pumped up, and excited…

P.-S.: If we worked together at some point, please feel free to leave me a recommendation on LinkedIn.

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