“Being Glue” by Tanya Reilly

I was browsing through a conference schedule, and this talk caught my eye:

Being Glue by Tanya Reilly

“…You’d like to have time for code, but nobody else is unblocking the junior engineers, maintaining the relationship with your sister team in the other office, updating the roadmap…”

I feel like this a lot. It’s more because of my team lead / tech lead role than anything else. I recently went on vacation and the stress-to-de-stress ratio between work-Lisa and vacation-Lisa was so much bigger than I ever remember it being before. Now admittedly some pretty stressful (not all bad) things had happened just prior to my vacation, like launching the new intranet home page on our WordPress site, and giving a talk at WordCamp Raleigh immediately after. But I have definitely had a feeling of grinding stress for a while now, and I think it’s in part due to my leadership (aka glue) responsibilities and my platform / dev-ops-ey responsibilities taking constant precedence over any coding work.

 

Speaking to a bigger audience

Last week, I had the privilege of giving a lightning talk at WordCamp US in Nashville, TN.

It’s not a surprise that speaking at a much larger event is a very different experience from speaking at my local WordCamp. One thing that stands out as odd is that I really have no idea who was in the room aside from the ten people in the very front. At WordCamp Raleigh, I can see every person in the room, and I remember almost all of them (or it feels that way). With no Q&A after the lightning talk, it felt so much less like a conversation. It was all much more… anonymous.

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Becoming a real WordPress dev

Fall 2014 – Set up a continuous deployment pipeline for our new WordPress install using git, Composer, and Bamboo.

Early 2015 – Figure out CMB2, create our first custom template for pages.

2015 – Implement RAMP, including configuring, customizing, and extending its capabilities over the course of the year-or-so.

2016 – Establish the process for “dark launch” of content, including conceptualization of tools written in WordPress to support the process (tools actually written by co-worker).

2017 – Create “self-healing” templates to get around thorny CMB2 / RAMP issues.

Summer 2017 – Create bash / WP-CLI scripts to automate the duplication, dark launch, and swap-out of a large content area to make the process of major revisions to that area seamless.

Winter 2018 – Create a taxonomy template and use The Loop for the first time. Finally become a Real WordPress Dev.