I am now a Product Manager.
I've managed to worm my way into Microsoft Corp HQ, as a Product Manager (PM) on the Rich Client Platform team (Silverlight/WPF etc). This for me is a major step forward in my career, as whilst I've enjoyed being one of the first RIA Evangelist for Microsoft, I feel I can offer more impact via this new role than in the field. I will still in part Evangelise Microsoft's offering in the UX space.
What is a Product Manager?
It varies in definition depending on which company a PM works for and what Product(s) they hold in their portfolio. For me, to keep it simple is that I'll be looking to ensure products like Silverlight out-innovate the competitor, as that's my core intent.
Silverlight & WPF have enormous potential going forward, and I will now be apart of this new wave of Microsoft technologies.
What can I offer to this role..
I offer years of experience in this thing we call RIA firstly, but more to the point I have a wide range of technical skills as well as some basic marketing skills. I also have a design portion of the brain, so blending the entire pool together, well, I hope to offer a colourful amount of expertise to the job ahead and looking forward to seeing what level of impact I can make on the product.
I'm going to be working with a lot of really smart people, folks whom I've spent the last year working with in a virtual sense. That alone is the strong motivator as I'll be standing on the shoulder of giants. The three that stand out the most though are Brad Becker, Brian Goldfarb and Pete Faraday. These three are insanely smart, much smarter than me and I'm keen to tap their collective brain power for good instead of evil ;)
Will I stop blogging?
No. In fact I'll have a more focused approach to my blogging and my new team are supportive of my blog going forward. Having a my ear, eyes and voice within the community is critical to the success of this new role.
What will be the direction of the content on my blog?
Still the same, I'll be keen to decompose RIA more so than ever. The market has framed the conversation today under the guise of RIA. I personally think RIA is the wrong worldview, but i don't have an accurate answer on what it should be. Suffice to say, RIA fits and you can call it "Bob" for all I care, provided people are keen to explore the rich experiences associated to RIA.
I'll be also looking to highlight UX within Microsoft more, as I have not only seen but met a lot of creative folks within Microsoft whom far exceed my understanding of UX - yet they go unnoticed. Now that I'm on Microsoft Corp campus, I'll be looking to devote some time unearthing them some more.
What about your current role?
No idea what will happen with it. There maybe a vacant position in Australia for the Evangelism team or they may not. It's entirely up to my peeps in the Oz Team to decide. I will be selling my assets locally, so anyone want a big screen TV? heh. The current team I work with are awesome, and can't think of anyone negative thing to say about them - honestly. At the time of writing this, there is no news about replacing my current role, but be sure to check out Microsoft Australia career page (as this will be the first place to advertise it no doubt - we hire on merit, not who you know).
You're in the US now? Customs allowed this?
Yes. Not sure I'm going to fully embrace Seattle's cold weather, but I'll give it an open chance. Did I mention I grew up most of my life in the Australian outback desert? I've made a lot of new friends in Redmond over the year, so I'm looking forward to listening to their wisdom about all things America (specifically hear Chuck & Frank's thoughts from time to time).
Where to from here?
Well, I have to pack my entire life into a shipping container for one. I'll have to put a lot of stuff in storage and lastly figure out which electrical goods are US friendly vs aren't.
I'm looking forward to moving to the other side of the world. It will be a grand adventure! - in a geeky way.
Nathan Rothlisberg gave me an awesome URL which I'll no doubt make a lot of use of: http://www.simplyoz.com (I can keep my Tim Tams!!!)