DEV Community

Ari Waller for JFrog

Posted on • Updated on • Originally published at

My Career Morph into a Swamp Community Tradition

I must confess that when I first heard about the Meetup Event Manager position at JFrog my first thought was…“OMG! T-Shirts!” Having worked with technology professionals all of my career, I have seen some nice swag, but I have always considered JFrog T-Shirts as an elite-class unto themselves. People even list them on eBay and yes I bought one!

OK, cool swag aside, joining a software company with a technical meetup focus requires there to truly be an ongoing commitment to open-source and free community software offerings. Was JFrog that kind of company?

So let’s rewind a little. I started my career in the technical recruiting industry. I learned early on that keeping up with technology trends, and translating these into career satisfaction for a "happy life" was a passion of mine.

While working with technologists looking for their next position was something I excelled in, engaging with the technical community had its challenges. Sure, I placed technology professionals for a living, but that does not mean everyone I meet is in my crosshairs. I get it though...when you receive 50+ recruiting emails per week and your voicemail is full every day about "jobs", the response is warranted. What could I do to try and lower some of these defenses?

About 5 years ago it hit me… I’ll offer technically specific career guidance at meetups based on current IT career and salary trends in the market. I wanted a platform to be authentically transparent, and become an “open source” confidant for those who wanted career guidance. I could make placements, and provide expertise to the community!

So for the past few years, I would speak quarterly within the PHP, Java, Python, Angular, .Net, Business Analysts technical meetup and “boot camp” communities. I found a new level of professional satisfaction in the reciprocity of honest career-oriented dialogue in a non-intimidating setting.

Fast forward to a few months ago when I began to look for a new position. I initially focused on different technical recruiting leadership roles as one would expect. That was until a friend in the meetup community told me about JFrog’s Meetup Event Manager position. As I learned more about it, a metamorphosis of sorts took place within me. I was more excited about this than anything else I was working towards. Applying my background and experience in the community was not only "an option", but my new desire. I have had the luxury my entire career of waking up and loving my job. For me to continue that path, I knew this was something I had to explore further.

When I researched JFrog, I learned that the technical community was a priority for JFrog starting from the first Artifactory OSS version in 2006. Since then they have added other open source tools and free resources to make the work lives of Software Engineers and DevOps professionals happier and more productive. That’s a mission I can get behind if they will give me the opportunity!

I was humbled and ecstatic to have been offered the position. The icing on the cake for me was when I learned on my first day that we were releasing the free to use JFrog Container Registry, a cloud-native, hybrid software download for Docker and Helm. I joined a company that regularly invests in its community roots. For me, this was a satisfying confirmation that I was in the right place. That, and those amazing T-Shirts!

Top comments (0)