It’s time for me to move to other adventures. The reasons, what I will remember from Citrix, and more importantly what I’m up to next are questions that keep coming since I updated my linked in Profile today. Here is a brief answer to all.
Why did you leave / did they let you go?
First, let’s take care of one of the main question I got: why did you leave? In short, I got a nice severance package at a good time.
Citrix decided to split the GoTo product family a few weeks after I joined, and between all the work to address this complicated process, and the departure of the original executive sponsors of my project, the interest in the projects I had been hired for (Standards, …) was declining.
Part of the splitting process was to relocate all the employees of the GoTo family into a discrete set of locations, and Singapore was not one of them. I was not yet eligible for a US work visa either. Timing was wrong to move me over.
On my side, the anti-compete with my previous company was over, and I was receiving a lot of requests for consulting on interesting projects. That plus all the projects I had put on the side. The timing was great to start taking in projects and have fun (my definition of having fun: making a difference!).
How was it at Citrix ?
My time at Citrix was great. They really know how to take care of their own. Even though we ended up having diverging interest, I have but positive things to say about the team there. On a personal level, both my HR (kathy chan and Soo Lin Peh) and my boss Jug Bath have been incredibly helpful from day one, until the end.
— Dr. Alex. Gouaillard (@agouaillard) April 20, 2016
I met some fantastic engineers there with whom I had a great time working as well. Lots of talents there.
Ms Edge web summit, the past and present Citrix team. pic.twitter.com/s1ySmJ503g
— Dr. Alex. Gouaillard (@agouaillard) April 20, 2016
On the global level, I have been very impressed by the amount of work done by the leadership team in a situation (the split) that can be otherwise very stressful. Every employee in such a situation is worried about the future, their future, and the leadership team did an extraordinary job at communicating down to the teams, and at involving them (as much as possible) in the decision process. The result was a re-motivated team, re-build around key values they have defined themselves and thus truly represent them.
Another point I loved was the equal treatment given to shareholders, clients and employees. Each of them need to be happy for things to really work, however in the past I had always been in situations where the focus was on e one much more than others. One start up would focus on shareholders, another one on the clients, etc. For the first time, the distinction was made explicit, and each king of stakeholder had an happiness indicator and an associated metric. What do shareholders way? A better valuation, better results and better dividends 🙂 How do I know if the clients are happy? Check the growth, the contract renewal rates, etc. How do I know if my employees are happy? Make sure the turn over rate stays below a threshold, etc. It seems easy, it is not, and I think Citrix was doing a great job at it.
LogMeIn also has a great team of engineers, I’m sure that once the merge will be done, those will do great things together.
— Dr. Alex. Gouaillard (@agouaillard) August 3, 2016
What will I do next? This is question is always asked, often with curiosity, sometimes with hope, and for a very small group with fear.
I will stay in the webRTC ecosystem. The W3C nicely accepted to grant me again an Invited Expert status again, recognizing the work done on the Testing part of the standards. I will be in Lisbon for the Technical Plenary meeting and try to contribute actively. Apple should be there as well, hopefully with some interesting statements (and if you read me: some free iPhone 7, just for testing, would be extremely welcome as well, my wife said 😉 )
In the mean time, I’m doing an European tour of webRTC MCU and SFU projects, and some related companies. While it saddens some non European SFU companies (Emil, I promise I will go in Austin next year !), it was long due to visit the meteecho/Janus team in Napoli, Igalia (webkit), Oracle and Tokbox/Mantis in Barcelona, Kurento, Licode/lynckia, MediaSoup and Meedoze in Madrid. Expect some posts this month if I can catch up with all the yummy European food and excellent wine.
Q4 is always the quarter of Asia. Last year TPAC and IETF were in Japan, then webrtc expo was in China for he first time, followed by a one-day INTEL webRTC event. This year, webRTC world is again in chine end of october, before the IETF meeting in Korea and JSConf.asia in Singapore in november, where my friend dan burnett and myself will have the honor of a closing session.
As hinted in the first paragraph, I will for the foreseeable future propose my services as a consultant, and work on some projects I had on hold for some time. I already have a handful of projects and teams I’m working with, and I will likely take on a few others. I’m looking for technical challenges, and exciting teams, to participate in making a difference in the webRTC world.
I’m also looking for a sponsor for a book about webRTC *implementation* (a.k.a. the native stack missing doc) that could be a more practical companion of dan and allan’s reference webrtc book.
This work by Dr. Alexandre Gouaillard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
This blog is not about any commercial product or company, even if some might be mentioned or be the object of a post in the context of their usage of the technology. Most of the opinions expressed here are those of the author, and not of any corporate or organizational affiliation.