What does Tony do in Engineering Productivity?

My full time job is to work on engineering productivity.

Often folks ask me what I do every day / every week?

I often tell them what I’m working on this quarter.

Quarterly Focus

Well, the first quarter in 2019, my focus is on creating coding labs and content for new engineers that join Splunk so they understand what tools are available for them that is uniquely only available at Splunk.

Training New Hires

Every week, I will meet with all newly hired engineers for 2 hours and show them the tools available to them. Every 2 weeks, we will meet for 6 hours and they will do the coding labs we have created for them. I will likely talk with them for 30 minutes about the products at the company, the community, my own story at Splunk and what makes for an effective and impactful engineer. What is the culture in the engineering organization?

Tech Talks

On an ongoing basis, I will solicit internal and external folks who have worked on interesting problems to present during our weekly tech talks. The purpose is to share the work so other might learn and make use of the work themselves. Or the talks are to inspire them to think bigger and beyond their daily work.

Listening

Anther part of my work is just listening to engineers and they may reach out to me to help them get their work done. This could be a wide range of topics. It could range from just looking for the name of someone who could answer a technical problem. It could be just brain storming with me about a problem they have in finding a solution to replicate a problem with a particular mobile app. It could be helping them finding a solution when they feel overwhelmed with too many meetings.

Systemic Solutions

When I listen to an engineer on a specific problem, I often would try to help them solve the initial problem. Make sure they are unblocked. Then my real job kicks it and I need to figure out whether this is a more systemic problem. I would reach out to other engineers and other engineering managers and figure out who else has the same question or problem. Or I would write a document so that others could benefit in the future. I could also create a backlog EPIC so the team of 3 engineers might brainstorm with me on a more longer term and thorough solution.

Non Technical

Still to be written, Saturday badminton awaits

Mentoring

Still to be written, Saturday badminton awaits

Engineering

Still to be written, Saturday badminton awaits

Tony Tam (Li Zhi)

Senior Principal Engineer @ Splunk, ImpactfulEngineer.org & SFBadminton.org