30 Days of Gratitude: Day 14

See the final results of my 30 Days of Gratitude challenge here: 30 Days of Gratitude: Final Reflections.

Today’s post is a little late in the day, since I spent the morning working to meet a deadline. It looks like my hard work has paid off, since my boss seems happy with my work. I did take a little longer to get it out than expected because I really wanted to test it thoroughly, and I think the results show. Some other engineers on the team push out features more quickly, but they’re often riddled with problems – I’m glad my boss appreciates my thoroughness!

Now that things are settling back down, here are the things I’m thankful for:

  1. Product managers. The good ones, at least. A good product manager can make the product development process so much easier by facilitating communication between the engineers, designers, and customers. I’m lucky to have met a couple good ones in my career so far. They’re really hard to find!
  2. LinkedIn. It makes the job hunting process so much easier. I’m not hunting for a job by any means, but LinkedIn makes it easy for companies to reach out to me about engineering positions. On a societal scale, I also think it helps “level the playing field” a bit – since people tend to hire people they know, and people mostly connect with people like themselves… it can be harder for people who aren’t in the “right networks” to get “good” jobs. This is why people complain that companies like Facebook “only hire Stanford grads”. It’s not perfect, but LinkedIn makes it easier for companies to discover new people and give them a chance.
  3. Companies like Airbnb and Slack that are trying to remove discrimination in the tech hiring process. As a female software engineer, it makes me feel good that there are companies out there that are trying to make the hiring process more objective. When I’ve looked for jobs in the past, I always worry about hostile work cultures, because I have so many female engineer friends/acquaintances who have been treated poorly. When I’m ready to move on from my current role, Airbnb and Slack will be on the top of my list. As a call out to #2 on my list today, Airbnb actually reached out to me via LinkedIn the other day – pretty cool!
  4. Software engineering in general. I’m happy to live in an era where software engineering is a valuable skill. If I were born 100 years earlier, I’d probably be a poor baker (like my maternal grandfather). Or an indentured servant.
  5. Online education. Education is becoming more and more democratic by the day. Before, only the rich could afford college – now, there are sites like Coursera, where you can take all kinds of courses online for free. In fact, I learned a lot of what I know about software engineering from online courses.

What are you thankful for?

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