Four months ago I joined the WooCommerce development team and I loved it. Lots of time to program cool extensions like Coupon Campaigns, Give Products, Ninja Forms Product Addons, updating the email functionality in WooCommerce, and auditing all of the extensions that go in the catalog. I loved every second of it. Working with awesome people, learning new things, and creating code that's used by hundreds of thousands of websites. My path however is changing a bit. Instead of a developer I'll be the WooCommerce Product Manager.
I'll still be working with WooCommerce but instead of writing the code I'll be focusing on growing WooCommerce and making it the best e-commerce product out there. I'll be taking input from customers (what do people want), the business needs, and the development team (what is easy to build / maintain) and then determining the roadmap for WooCommerce. Something like this:
Day to Day
In my day to day duties I'll be getting input from users. That means reading blog posts, our community forum, our support system, and our ideas board (with 2,000+ ideas!). Once I figure out the features our users want I'll confer with the dev team and try to push through one big feature every release cycle and as many small features as we can manage. This ensures constant improvement to WooCommerce and with that constant improvement we're bound to keep going in an upwards trajectory. And as long as we're growing we can continue development on this amazing free & open source e-commerce platform that helps people sell anything – beautifully. 🙂
I'll still be auditing 3rd party plugins. Instead of looking solely into the code I'll be making higher level decisions about which extensions we want to include in our catalog.
I'm actually not too worried about the business part of my role. It's certainly new and there's lots of learn but as long as we're adding value to WooCommerce people will appreciate that and buy those extensions.
I hope to be getting out to a lot more conferences chatting with store owners and getting their feedback. Honestly, the more feedback the better. There are 2,000 ideas for WooCommerce on our ideas board and I need some help determining which features to build.
Working with an Incredible Team
I think the aspect I'm most looking forward to is working with an incredible team. I'll be working most often with Mike Jolley (lead developer for WooCommerce), Andrew Benbow (lead WooCommerce support), and Matt Cohen (Head of Product). Being able to chat daily with talented and bright individuals is going to be incredible. When you're surrounded by brilliant inspiring people you can't but help some of it rubbing off on you – and I'm hoping lots of it rubs off. 🙂
If I had to summarize my role in one sentence it's no longer how do I build ___. It's why should I build ____.
All in all – I'm unbelievably pumped. It's going to be a wild ride and I can't wait to see how much I can help WooCommerce grow.
Photo credit: Matt Cohen who loves photoshopping people for announcements like this. Also props on the title – this was the title he used for the internal announcement.