As you know, I’m leaving Microsoft on July 2nd, and I’m joining Mozilla, so we need to find a replacement. Do you think you can be a Technical Evangelist? Are you passionate about Technology? Do you live in Montréal, and are a Francophone who speak English (I know the irony of doing this post in English)? Do you like to share, and help others? Are you good with working at home (or go at the office if you prefer…), and some occasional traveling? Do you know iOS or Android? Do you believe in Microsoft products, and technologies (note that you don’t have to know them, you can learn)? Would you like to be paid to work with partners, do some blogging, helps developers being successful, work with brilliant people, help the communities to grow, work with startups… ? If you answer yes to one or many of these questions (even better), please give a closer look at the official offer online.
I tried, with my experience, and my understanding of the evolution of my actual role for the Fred 2.0, to create a description of the offer in my own words. If you have any questions, comments or would like to meet for a coffee to discuss a little more about it, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be more than happy to have a good discussion with you, and no worries, it will be a secret as you may not want your actual employer to know about it…
Important (that mean you need all of them to apply) – In no particular order
Living in Montreal: it’s important for Microsoft Canada to have a representative in the Montreal area for such important places like at Notman House, and with all the user groups as the conferences happening here.
Bilingual Francophone: since the candidate will cover the Montreal area, and that Microsoft cares about Francophone it will be important to have a Francophone. It will also be important that the person speaks also in English, as it will have to join an English team, and cover all the rest of the Canada.
Developer experience required: It’s very important for an Evangelist to have development experience. You need to understand the pain, problems, and day to day of a developer to be able to reach them.
iOS and/or Android background: Android and/or iOS experience is required. One of the main focuses for the candidate next fiscal year (beginning July 1st) will be about reaching the mobile developers around iOS and/or Android technology to get them on board with the Microsoft stack, mainly Windows 8, and Windows Phone 8. It will also be an opportunity to get them to use Windows Azure as a backend. A preference will be around iOS experience.
Passion of technology, and people: without passion around technology, you won’t be able to be a good Evangelist. You also need to have the passion around people, and to see them being successful.
Presentation skills: part of the role include presentations at conferences, in user group meetup or in online webinars. You’ll also have to lead some workshops or hackathons. With this in mind, it’s important that you are comfortable to speak in front of a crowd as a subject matter expert, and be able to vulgarize on these topics. Please note that it’s part of the role, but not all what you’ll do.
Self-learning capabilities: as an Evangelist, you need to be able to learn by yourself. You’ll start on focussing on Windows 8, Windows Phone, and Windows Azure, but you’ll need to follow the versions of these products, the new API, and the new features. Your focus may also change to include new product or new technology, and you always need to be on the cutting edge of those.
Leadership: based on the scorecard, and DPE (Developer Platform Evangelist) plan for the fiscal year, you’ll have to define your plan with your virtual team (you, and your partners, like an Audience Marketing Manager, and a community manager from the Commercial Software Initiative department) on how you want to achieve the year goals. On the personal side, you’ll also have to define your commitments for the year, as they will help you to focus on what is important, and help your manager to review your performance.
Assets (that means it’s a plus if you have one or all of them) – In no particular order
AWS background: part of your work is to win over competition of Windows Azure. Educate people about Cloud Computing, and letting them know about Windows Azure will be part of your day to day. Since Amazon is one of our strongest competitors, and more important, is probably the biggest one when it comes to Startups. Since startups, and the cloud is very important at Microsoft, having some knowledges around AWS would be a great asset for the role.
Knowledge around Windows 8: all Evangelist has a primary focus related to our scorecard for the year, and the new Evangelist will also focus on Windows 8. That means, that you’ll need to be at level 400 (technical level you see at conferences) on Windows 8 application development using HTML5. If you have any experience developing, and deploying a Windows 8 application, it will be a good asset for the role. If you don’t, you can learn quickly the WinJS API as the perfect candidate will already have HTML5 skills.
Knowledge around Windows Azure: even if the Evangelist has a primary focus, he will still need to support other technology like Windows Azure, and have an understanding of the technology compared to a level 200. Since Windows Azure is Open, it will be a good opportunity to leverage our cloud offering to the HTML, iOS, and Android developers as they mostly all needs backend, databases, and more.
Knowledge around Windows Phone: Last, but not least on the technical side, the Windows Phone. This one is really Microsoft specific as you need to use C#, and XAML to build applications.
Writing skills: part of the role you’ll have to write code sample, code demo, presentations, and blog posts sometimes technical, sometimes informational. You need to have a good quality writing in French, and in English.
Online & offline presence: being an Evangelist means that you will create a connection online, but also offline with influencers, developers, and many more people. Already being part of in-person communities like specific user groups would be a must as it will be easier to do your job if people already know you. Online is an important part of what we are doing as it help you scale, so having a blog, a Twitter account or any other social media presence would help you reach more people. It’s easier for the team if you already have a good network.