My name is Idalia, and I am an Application Owner in Wizeline’s Product Evolution Practice. As a member of the team for about 2 years since the very beginning of the discipline at Wizeline, I can tell you — oh, my God — it’s been such an evolution for both the team and my career!
Read on to learn more about my background, our practice, and what I’ve learned in my time at Wizeline so far.
Where I’m Coming From
From a very young age, I felt attracted to science. I found physics and math very interesting and decided to do a degree in Mechatronic Engineering. As soon as I finished my studies I received an opportunity to work in the IT industry and took it. I haven’t regretted that decision, not even once.
Before joining Wizeline, I worked for some humongous companies as a Product Support Engineer. One of the most important parts of this role, and probably the hardest one, is to provide excellent customer service. What we say, how we say it, and even our speed to provide an answer matters. We are part of the process that will make the customer decide whether or not to use our product again.
Through this experience, I developed an eager eye for incident management, learned how to actively listen to the people around me, discovered how to respectfully give my point of view regarding relevant matters, and collaborated with others to achieve team and company goals.
Even though Product Support prepares you with very important soft skills, I was in a very tech-focused role and never in a million years imagined that my 27-year-old self at that point in my career could be in a lead role requiring a proven technical background. One lucky day, a friend sent me a text message asking me if I would like to apply for a lead role. He believed I had the skills to match the position and that I should give it a try, so I did!
My Journey in Product Evolution
From the very moment I set foot in Wizeline for my onsite technical interview, I was amazed. I couldn’t believe how safe it felt, or how people welcomed me and supported me during the process. Of course, I was very nervous, it was all new to me and deep down I had to admit I wasn’t sure I would get the job, but the Wizeliners made me feel very comfortable and capable of achieving success, and they even had lunch with me.
I remember that one of my colleagues from People Ops told me, and I quote, “The interview process is designed to allow all the great things from you to shine; be yourself.” This specifically is what I believe made me strong that day and it sticks in my memory today. I had never had such a warm experience during interviews for a role in a company, so when I was told the position was mine, I didn’t think twice about it!
To give you some context, what we do as a discipline is help products that are already running in production to achieve their highest level of productivity and tech quality. When I got to meet the Product Evolution team, I saw incredibly smart people starving to create new things, proposing new workflows, working with new and different tools, learning new languages, trying out different workflow methodologies, taking all the courses available, and basically just wanting to grow as a team and individually as much as possible.
One of my first projects introduced me to the amazing world of AWS, and to be honest, I had no clue! I never worked with Cloud platforms before. But I got the support I needed not only from my team, but from the whole company. I received help from SREs, Software Engineers, Project Managers, Salespeople, and the list goes on. And, best of all, everyone was ALWAYS happy to offer their help and expertise!
From this, I learned not only about this new project, but about the Wizeline culture overall. In all the projects I have had the opportunity to work on, I’ve been able to contribute to developing new Support processes, create new workflow strategies specifically for incident management, work on improving the health and work dynamic of the team, create service desk platforms for customers from scratch, develop on-call processes, etc. I have to admit it has all been very empowering.
With the help of my Discipline Lead and my Practice Lead, I learned that I can express myself when things are not going right. And you know what? I am being listened to and addressed. Product Evolution has taught me new and different ways to support an app in production, it has taught me how to become a leader, and it continues to help me develop the leader in me. Even though 2020 was a rough year for everyone, we were able to watch our discipline grow, and we managed to continue to collaborate and create professional and personal relationships using all the virtual tools available. Of course, this hasn’t been an easy journey; part of our evolution happened during a global pandemic, and we wouldn’t be able to achieve amazing things without the collaboration and support of the whole company.
This has been just a small part of my story and experience as an Application Owner in the Product Evolution discipline. I am really happy that I made the decision to apply for the role and I thank Wizeline for seeing a potential leader in me and helping me to develop new skills, gain new knowledge, and, overall, improve as an Engineer. I can’t wait for my next challenge!