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How DNN Changed My Life - (part 2)

Searching for DNNDOX, the Courtship and the Company’s Culture

After moving on from the Social Services web agency, I was consulting for a few years at some rather interesting companies, with even more interesting people. I worked for Williams-Sonoma, The New York Times and the Food& Wine Magazine in a re-design and re-launch of each of their “Wine Club” websites. They were migrating all three web e-commerce sites to use MS Dynamics to administer the sites and their e-commerce presences. During the initial meetings to discuss client needs, their wish lists, site functionality and UI/UX, I had asked our management team and tech agency who would be doing the work why they weren’t going to be using something like DNN to build the sites, as it made more sense to me to not be forced to use different pieces of software to make one simple change on the site. When I mentioned DNN, everyone would stare blankly at me, ask what “DotNetNuke” was - I tried to explain why it was a better choice and how powerful it is… and it simply proved easier just to get on with the meeting as if I had never said anything. I didn’t understand why I was the only person I knew in the Bay Area who had ever even heard of the software... I knew the people I was working for were missing out, but had no one championing the idea, or anyone really interested in learning more about it.

My last couple of consulting positions were working with management that was either indifferent, inexperienced or lacking confidence. I wondered if those fairy-tale companies I had heard so much about during the initial tech industry bubble had all but disappeared. I remember hearing intriguing stories of Silicon Valley companies employee perks, like in-house chair massages, group company outings and other inspirational team-building exercises that their lucky minions were invited to experience. I remember hearing new buzzwords and tech-industry phrases like “company culture” floating around – synonymous with powerhouse corporations like Zappos and Google and Facebook. I knew that the few companies that believed in the importance of these factors of employee and corporate life were going to succeed in this fragile environment… because the employees were generating the buzz and excitement! But where were the opportunities for me to find one, and land a position with one of them??

I knew I belonged somewhere interesting, where people truly enjoyed their work and appreciated their colleagues… somewhere where the executive team were true Leaders; experienced and wise. I knew somewhere out there were legendary companies where employees were valued and praised for their hard work, and not taken for granted – somewhere the employees were encouraged to participate in group games and social events to unwind and get to know each other better…  where employees are encouraged to get away from their desks occasionally to take breaks from working so hard, and where leaving the office shortly after 5pm was normal… but for me, my opposing alternate reality was that in the past 6 years my only exposure was lacking solid leadership… with an ongoing lack of appreciation, and I had even been a victim of a toxic work environment for many years. I knew there was a magical place where people actually cared about each other, each others success and the success of the company as a whole – but where were they? How do I gain access – and then once I have access, go about landing a job there? Impossible? It sure appeared that way.

While working as a consultant and while I was interviewing every chance I had, I proudly typed in “DotNetNuke” as one of my first competencies on my resume and was excited to talk to people who surely knew about it. Time and time again I would get asked “What is DotNetNuke? Something to with nuclear energy?”… and after being asked these types of questions for many many months, again and again, I made the decision to remove it from my resume and replace it with “CMS Administration & Skinning”. I wasn’t happy to do that, as I felt I wanted to share with everyone how great the product was! I made the change on my resume but had (luckily) forgotten to remove it from my Linkedin profile. This would prove to be an integral part of me getting discovered by Mrs. Rebecca Lipski, the head of HR and the Culture Officer and Ambassador for DNN Corp...

Read part 3...


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